For the discovery of cyclic AMP and elucidation of this key chemical mechanism that regulates hormonal action.
Dr. Sutherland, in a series of brilliantly designed and carefully controlled experiments, discovered a new chemical intermediary—cyclic adenylic acid (AMP)—and showed that it participates in a wide range of biochemical and physiological control and regulatory mechanisms.
By providing a comprehension of the role of cyclic AMP in regulating hormonal action at the cellular level, Dr. Sutherland has constructed a conceptual basis for understanding endocrine physiology in health and disease—a monumental contribution.
Dr. Sutherland demonstrated that cyclic AMP mediates a considerable variety of hormone actions. Subsequent work of many other scientists, all over the world, has contributed to the structure now arising on the foundation of Dr. Sutherland's discoveries. Thus, cyclic AMP is now known to be an intracellular agent, a key regulatory substance, and a master molecule of metabolic control and regulation, which is even involved in the control of the expression of genetic information at the level of the chromosomes.
For his far-reaching pioneering contributions to biochemistry and medicine; for his discovery of cyclic AMP and how it operates; for the formulation of bold and original new concepts; and for opening the eyes of the world to an important class of regulatory mechanisms in cells, Dr. Sutherland is given the 1970 Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research.