Friday, Oct. 10, 2008

Phillip Sharp

Phillip Sharp, a cancer researcher and professor of molecular biology and biochemistry at MIT, is well off compared with most other academic scientists. That is, today. As co-founder of the biotech companies Biogen (now Biogen Idec), Alnylam Pharmaceuticals and Magen Biosciences Inc., he's made millions. But when he received his Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine back in 1993 for his discovery of RNA splicing, he wasn't nearly there yet. He used his half of the prize money (he shared the prize with British scientist Richard Roberts, who used his winnings to install a croquet lawn in his front yard) to buy an old Federalist house. — R.F.