Nobel Prize for Medicine Shared by Three Pioneers in Parasitic Diseases

Nobel Prize for Medicine Shared by Three Pioneers in Parasitic Diseases
Fecha de publicación: 
6 October 2015
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Campbell and Omura discovered a new drug, Avermectin, whose derivatives have drastically reduced the incidence of river blindness and elephantiasis, and have also proved to be effective against many other parasitic diseases.

They will share the prize with China’s Tu Youyou, who discovered artemisinin, a drug which has significantly reduced malaria mortality rates.

“This year’s Nobel Laureates have developed therapies that have revolutionized the treatment of some of the most devastating parasitic diseases,” the Nobel Committee said while announcing the winners.

These two discoveries, the committee stressed, have provided humanity with new and potent means to fight grave diseases that affect hundreds of millions of people every year.

“The global impact of their discoveries and the resulting benefit to mankind are immeasurable,” the Committee said, recalling that parasitic diseases are among some of the major health problems across the world, especially among the poorest sections.

Campbell, born in 1930 in Ramelton (Ireland), is a professor emeritus at Drew University, in the U.S. state of New Jersey.

Omura, born in 1935 in Japan’s Yamanashi prefecture, is a professor emeritus at Kitasato University in Tokyo.

Tu, born in 1930 in China’s Ningbo, is a medical researcher and pharmaceutical chemist, and is currently a professor and director at the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences.

The winners will share the prize money of 8 million Swedish crowns ($954,000).

Last year, the Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded to the American May-Britt Moser and Edvard I Moser “for their discoveries of cells that constitute a positioning system in the brain.”

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