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Scientists who helped identify Hepatitis C virus win 2020 Nobel Medicine Prize

Scientists who helped identify Hepatitis C virus win 2020 Nobel Medicine Prize
epaselect epa08721716 Thomas Perlmann (R), Secretary of the Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institut and of the Nobel Committee for Physiology or Medicine, announces the winners of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine during a press conference at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, 05 October 2020. (L-R) on the screen are Harvey J.  Alter, Michael Houghton and Charles M  Rice, the three laureates who win the 2020 Nobel Medicine Prize. EPA-EFE/Claudio Bresciani / POOL SWEDEN OUT

STOCKHOLM, Oct 5 (Reuters) - Two Americans and a Briton won the 2020 Nobel Prize for Medicine on Monday for work in identifying the Hepatitis C virus, which causes cirrhosis and liver cancer.

The discoveries by scientists Harvey Alter, Charles Rice and Briton Michael Houghton meant there was now a chance of eradicating the Hepatitis C virus completely, the award-giving body said.

“Prior to their work, the discovery of the Hepatitis A and B viruses had been critical steps forward,” the Nobel Assembly at Sweden’s Karolinska Institute said in a statement on awarding the prize of 10 million Swedish crowns ($1.1 million).

“The discovery of Hepatitis C virus revealed the cause of the remaining cases of chronic hepatitis and made possible blood tests and new medicines that have saved millions of lives.”

While the Nobel awards will go ahead as planned this year, they have been overshadowed by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Nobel Foundation has cancelled the traditional banquet, which forms the centre-piece of the celebrations in December, and will hand out the medals and diplomas in a televised event rather than live in Stockholm.

This year’s winners will be invited to celebrate alongside the 2021 laureates, assuming the pandemic has eased by then.

Medicine is the first of the Nobel Prizes awarded each year. The prizes for achievements in science, peace and literature have been awarded since 1901 and were created in the will of dynamite inventor and businessman Alfred Nobel. ($1 = 8.9053 Swedish crowns)

(Reporting by Simon Johnson in Stockhol and Douglas Busvine in Berlin; additional reporting by Niklas Pollard, Johannes Hellstrom, Supantha Mukherjee and Anna Ringstrom; Editing by Hugh Lawson and Giles Elgood)

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  • Darryl van Blerk says:

    As one would expect, no prizes to the rest of the world for the idiotic response to Corona, and none in picture are wearing masks.

  • Kanu Sukha says:

    I am surprised that Trump did not win a Nobel prize in medicine …for recommending the ingestion of bleach as cure for the corona virus ! What a useless committee!

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