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Axelrod | Berliner | Bowman | Brodie | Shannon | Udenfriend
image of molecule Julius Axelrod (1912-2004)

ulius "Julie" Axelrod won the Nobel Prize in 1970 for neurotransmitter research conducted in part with the spectrophotofluorometer (SPF). Dr. Axelrod was born in 1912 in New York City and attended the College of the City of New York. After graduation he worked as a lab assistant and a research chemist. He then moved on to Goldwater Memorial Hospital, where he worked as Dr. Brodie's lab technician for many years. In 1949 both Axelrod and Brodie joined the newly formed National Heart Institute (NHI) and while at NHI Axelrod earned his doctoral degree at George Washington University.

In 1955, after completing his doctoral work, Dr. Axelrod became chief of the Section on Pharmacology at the Laboratory of Clinical Science at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and began using the new SPF in his research on neurotransmitters. With the SPF, he was able to measure tiny amounts of neurotransmitters in the brain. He studied norepinephrine and described the process for storage, release, and "re-uptake" by the cells as needed. For this work, he was awarded the 1970 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Dr. Axelrod formally retired from NIMH in 1984, though he continued to keep up a laboratory and be active in NIH research.

Photograph of Dr. Julius Axelrod

Dr. Julius Axelrod.

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