A British and a Spanish biologist have been awarded Spain's prestigious Prince of Asturias Prize for scientific and technical research.

The Prince of Asturias Foundation Wednesday named Peter Lawrence and Ginés Morata as the winners of the prize for their study on the genetic development of a common fly.

The Foundation, in a statement, said their research on gene changes that cause diseases such as cancer will have a far-reaching effect on medicine in the future.

The fly at the center of their research is an important biological model, because it shares 60 percent of its genes with all other animals, including humans.

Award winners receive about $67,000 and a reproduction of a sculpture by Spanish artist Joan Miro.

Last week, the foundation announced that this year's Asturias arts prize will go to U.S. singer and songwriter Bob Dylan.

The foundation, headed by Spanish Crown Prince Filipe, awards eight Asturias prizes every year, covering such fields as the arts, science, and sports. The prizes are presented in October.

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