During a press conference on the Stanford campus this morning (captured in the video above), Nobel Laureate Brian Kobilka, MD, discussed his work, shared memorable discoveries in his career, and talked about adversity. On the topic of “eureka” moments, he said:
There have probably been a couple of eureka moments in my career. But the one that stands out above all others is seeing for the first time a G-protein-coupled receptor in the active actually signally. This was a crystal structure that was reported last year. When we actually saw [that interaction] it was just amazing, and so exciting.
Later on, he discussed staying motivated in the face of tough challenges:
A colleague, who is now a professor at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, describes it as irrational optimism. Even though something fails… you’ll think of an idea and it’s, ‘Oh, this one is going to work!’ So you just keep thinking that something’s going to work.