Go to contents

Dr. Watson’s 1962 Nobel Prize medal to be put on auction

Dr. Watson’s 1962 Nobel Prize medal to be put on auction

Posted November. 26, 2014 08:35,   


Dr. James Watson, now 86, who won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1962 for deciphering the structure of DNA, put his medal up for auction, Christie’s said on Monday.

A Nobel Prize medal was sold at auction before but it is the first time that a medal is offered by a living recipient.

The medal will be auctioned in New York on next Thursday. It is expected to be sold for up to 3.5 million U.S. dollars, the auction house said. Watson plans to donate a portion of the proceeds to support scientific research and charitable causes.

The medal given to Watson was minted at the Swedish National Mint and is plated with 24 karat gold. In addition to the medal, Watson`s handwritten notes for his acceptance speech will also be offered at the auction (up to 400,000 dollars including the manuscript), along with his corrected drafts for his Nobel speech (a pre-sale estimate of 200,000 to 300,000 dollars).

Watson, along with Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins, unraveled the double-helix structure and function of DNA in England in 1953 in a discovery which heralded the modern era of biology. The medal given to Crick, who died in 2004, was sold at 2.27 million dollars at auction last year.