Scientists win medicine Nobel for COVID vaccine work

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STORY: “The 2023 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine has been awarded to Katalin Kariko and Drew Weissman for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19.’’

One of the most prestigious prizes in the scientific world has been awarded to two scientists whose discoveries helped in the fight against the global pandemic.

The Hungarian and American duo worked on the breakthrough research through the University of Pennsylvania.

Kariko found a way to prevent the immune system from launching an inflammatory reaction against lab-made mRNA, a major hurdle against any therapeutic use of mRNA.

Together with Weissman, she showed in 2005 that adjustments to nucleosides, the molecular letters that write the mRNA’s genetic code, can keep the mRNA under the immune system’s radar.

Here they are speaking to Reuters back in April.

"I'm not a Hollywood actor, who loves to be in front of the audience and take credit for things like this. My job was to make a vaccine and I did it."

“It is a very safe and very important vaccine and more will come and all will be very beneficial for the people.''

The prize of one million dollars kicks off the year’s awards with the remaining five to be unveiled in the coming days.