STOCKHOLM — The Nobel Prize within the discipline of physiology or drugs has been awarded to U.S.-based scientists David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian.
They have been cited for his or her discovery of receptors for temperature and contact.
The winners have been introduced Monday by Thomas Perlmann, secretary-general of the Nobel Committee.
Patrik Ernfors of the Nobel Committee mentioned Julius, 65, used capsaicin, the energetic element in chili peppers, to determine the nerve sensors that permit the pores and skin to answer warmth.
Patapoutian discovered separate pressure-sensitive sensors in cells that reply to mechanical stimulation, he mentioned.
“This really unlocks one of the secrets of nature,” mentioned Perlmann. “It’s actually something that is crucial for our survival, so it’s a very important and profound discovery.”
The pair additionally shared the celebrated Kavli Award for Neuroscience final yr.
Last yr’s Nobel drugs prize went to three scientists who found the liver-ravaging hepatitis C virus, a breakthrough that led to cures for the lethal illness and exams to maintain the scourge from spreading although blood banks.
The prestigious award comes with a gold medal and 10 million Swedish kronor (over $1.14 million). The prize cash comes from a bequest left by the prize’s creator, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel, who died in 1895.
The prize is the primary to be awarded this yr. The different prizes are for excellent work within the fields of physics, chemistry, literature, peace and economics.