The 2020 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine has been awarded.
“This year’s Nobel Prize is awarded to three scientists who have made a decisive contribution to the fight against blood-borne hepatitis, a major global health problem that causes cirrhosis and liver cancer in people around the world.
Harvey J. Alter, Michael Houghton and Charles M. Rice made seminal discoveries that led to the identification of a novel virus, Hepatitis C virus. Prior to their work, the discovery of the Hepatitis A and B viruses had been critical steps forward, but the majority of blood-borne hepatitis cases remained unexplained. 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.’Press release: The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2020. NobelPrize.org. Nobel Media AB 2020. Wed. 7 Oct 2020. https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/medicine/2020/press-release/
Good article in Nature (10/5/200): Virologists who discovered hepatitis C win medicine Nobel (Link).
The Nobel press release has graphics and an overview of the contributions by each prize winner.
The discovery was about thirty years ago; this prize, it is hoped, will remind people that HCV is still a problem and will speed up efforts to eradicate it globally in the near future.
For the tens of thousands of HCV-afflicted veterans (dead and alive), I hope this Nobel Prize will lead to unbiased public research (open access) about the likely service-connection transmissions routes of HCV.
Laura (Guest author)