Carl Ferdinand Cori Biochemist and pharmacologist Discovered Catalytic Conversion Of Glycogen

Carl Ferdinand Cori – discoverer of catalytic conversion of glycogen

Article on Carl Ferdinand Cori

Biography & contributions

Carl Ferdinand Cori was a Czech biochemist and pharmacologist and Nobel laureate born on December 05, 1896 – died on October 20, 1984. The Cori’s most notable contribution to science was their series of discoveries that elucidated the pathway of glycogen breakdown in animal cells and the enzymic basis of its regulation. Those discoveries formed a linear sequence that fell into four parts: the Cori Cycle - “cycle of carbohydrates”.

Cori was the winner of many notable awards and prizes in his lifetime like Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research in the year of 1946, shared Nobel Prize with Argentine physiologist Bernardo Houssay in the year of 1947, Willard Gibbs Medal, St Louis Award and Garvan Medals in the year of 1948, Sugar Research Prize in the year of 1950, Borden Award in the year of 1951.

Facts about Glycogen

Glycogen is a branched biopolymer consisting of linear chains of glucose residues and it is also called animal starch. Glycogen is synthesized and stored mainly in the liver and the muscles. Glycogen can be utilized a fuel substrate in the absence of oxygen. It maintains body’s glucose levels. Glycogen is the source of energy for exercise. Glycogen supplies energy during the first few minutes of any sport. In humans, glycogen is made and stored primarily in the cells of the liver and the muscles, and functions as the secondary long-term energy storage. Glycogen is found in the form of granules in the cytosol/cytoplasm in many cell types, and plays an important role in the glucose cycle. Glycogen forms an energy reserve that can be quickly mobilized to meet a sudden need for glucose, but one that is less compact than the energy reserves of triglycerides.

Marathon runners often experience condition called 'glycogen debt' where around the 20th mile or so, the athletes glycogen stores are depleted due to all the running ,therefore additional amount of glucose can be produced to provide instant energy and at this point. The average person stores enough glycogen to last its levels 12 to 14 hours.

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