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2021 Nobel Prize in Medicine awarded for discoveries in human senses

This year’s medicine prize is awarded to David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian.

• October 5, 2021
David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian [Photo Credit: BBC]

David Julius of the University of California, San Francisco, and Ardem Patapoutian of Scripps Research in La Jolla, California, have been awarded the 2021 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

The prize website said the discoveries of Messrs Julius and Patapoutian explains the “molecular basis for sensing heat, cold and mechanical force, which is fundamental for our ability to feel, interpret and interact with our internal and external environment.”

Mr Julius and Mr Papapoutian were awarded for discovering the molecular bases of how nerves convert stimuli into signals that can be sensed by the brain.

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine is awarded by the Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.

On Monday, Patrik Ernfors, a member of the prize committee, said “the work by David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian has unlocked one of the secrets of nature.”

Mr Julius is a professor and chair of the Department of Physiology and Morris Herzstein Chair in Molecular Biology and Medicine at the University of California.

Mr Papapoutian on the other hand is a neuroscience professor and Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at Scripps Research in La Jolla, California.

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