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2 Americans Win 2006 Nobel Prize in Medicine

Two physicians from the United States have won this year's Nobel Prize for medicine, for their discovery of a fundamental mechanism controlling the flow of genetic information.

In Stockholm, Sweden, the Nobel Assembly said Andrew Fire and Craig Mello won the award for the discovery of "R.N.A. interference," which they published in a 1998 report. R.N.A. interference is important in the defense against viruses and may lead to unprecedented therapies to reverse crippling diseases.

Fire is a professor at Stanford University School of Medicine, while Mello is professor of molecular medicine at Massachusetts Medical School.

The two men will share the Nobel prize for medicine, which this year is worth over $1.3 million. Their Nobel medals will be presented at a ceremony in Stockholm in December.

Last year's medicine prize went to Australians Barry J. Marshall and Robin Warren for discovering that bacteria, not stress, causes ulcers.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, and AP .