Born 8 Dec 1947
From Today In Science History:
Cech was an American biochemist and molecular biologist who, with Sidney Altman, was awarded the 1989 Nobel Prize for Chemistry for their discoveries concerning RNA (ribonucleic acid). Prior to Cech's research on RNA, most scientists believed that proteins were the only catalysts in living cells. Cech showed that RNA could have an independent catalytic function, a "ribozyme", aiding a chemical reaction without being consumed or changed.