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Nobel Chemistry Prize Awarded for Advances in DNA Repair

  • VOA News

A view of the screen showing the winners of the 2015 Nobel Prize for Chemistry, during a press conference, in Stockholm, Oct. 7, 2015.

The Nobel Prize committee in Stockholm, Sweden, has awarded this year's Nobel Prize in Chemistry to three scientists for their work on human DNA repair, which can be used in treatment of cancer.

The laureates are Tomas Lindahl of the Sir Francis Crick Institute and Clare Hall Laboratory in Britain, Paul Modrich of Duke University, and Aziz Sancar of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, both in the eastern U.S. state of North Carolina. Lindahl is Swedish, Modrich is American, and Sancar is Turkish.

On Tuesday, the 2015 Nobel Physics prize was awarded to Takaaki Kajita and Arthur MacDonald for their discovery of neutrino oscillations, which show that neutrinos - the second-most abundant particles in the universe, next to photons - have mass and change identities.

On Monday, the Nobel committee announced the prize winners for medicine: scientists from Ireland, Japan and China.

William Campbell from Ireland and Satoshi Omura from Japan shared the prize for their discovery of a new therapy for infections caused by roundworm parasites.

And China's Tu Youyou discovered a drug that has significantly reduced the mortality rates for patients suffering from malaria, so she will also share in the prize.

Nobel Prizes are awarded each year in medicine, physics, chemistry, literature, and peace. The money comes from a bequest by Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel and the awards, in existence since 1901, have become a top achievement award in each field. The Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences is also awarded by the committee, although it is not one of the original prizes set up by Alfred Nobel.

Winners are awarded a monetary prize that varies slightly in amount from year to year. They are also given a medal and a Nobel diploma, awarded at ceremonies in Oslo and in Stockholm in December.

Multiple winners divide the prize equally among themselves.