Yoshinori Ohsumi wins Nobel Medicine Prize

Yoshinori Ohsumi, a Japanese cell biologist, has awarded with Noble Prize for his discoveries in Physiology or Medicine on Monday in Stockholm. He was awarded for his discoveries on how cells recycle their content which is known as the process of autophagy.

The word ‘Autophagy’ is derived from the Greek word Self-eating. It is a natural destructive mechanism that disassembles unnecessary and dysfunctional cell components. Autophagy allows orderly degradation and recycling of cellular components.

The term Autophagy was coined by the Medicine Laureate, Christian de Duve in the year 1974. Mutation in autophagy genes can cause disease and the process involved in several conditions cause to cancer and neurological disorder.

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Currently, Yoshinori Ohsumi was a Professor at the Tokyo Institute of Technology. This Noble Prize in medicine category is the 107th award since the Noble prize is started awarded from 1905.

While announcing the awards, the Nobel Committee said in a statement that the cell biologist “discovered and elucidated mechanisms underlying autophagy, a fundamental process for degrading and recycling cellular components.

This concept emerged during the 1960s, when researchers first observed that the cell could destroy its contents by enclosing it in membranes, forming sacklike vesicles that were transported to a recycling compartment, called the lysosome, for degradation.”

Last year the Noble prize in the medical category was shared by three persons namely William C. Campbell, Tu Youyou and Satoshi Omura for discovering anti-parasitic drugs for Malaria and Tropical Diseases. The next five more awards that are presented in upcoming days are:

  • Nobel Prize in Physics will be announced on Tuesday (4th October) in Sweden.
  • Nobel Prize in Chemistry will announce on Wednesday (5th October) in Sweden.
  • Nobel Peace Prize will be announced on Friday (7th October) in Norway.
  • Nobel Memorial Prize will announce on Monday (10th October) in Sweden.
  • Nobel Prize in Literature will be announced on Thursday (13th October) in Sweden


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