3 Win Nobel Prize in Medicine for Discovering Hepatitis C Virus

Bloomberg QuickTake: Now published this video item, entitled “3 Win Nobel Prize in Medicine for Discovering Hepatitis C Virus” – below is their description.

Americans Harvey J. Alter and Charles M. Rice and British-born scientist Michael Houghton jointly won the Nobel Prize for medicine on Monday for their discovery of the hepatitis C virus, a major source of liver disease that affects millions worldwide. Announcing the prize, the Nobel Committee noted that the trio’s work identified a major source of blood-borne hepatitis that couldn’t be explained by the previously discovered hepatitis A and B viruses. Their work, dating back to the 1970s and 1980s, has helped saved millions of lives, it said. Rice said he received the call at 4:30 a.m. and that at first he thought it was a “crank phone call.” “I let the phone just sort of ring and die, and then I thought, ‘Oh, OK, well, it must have just been a fluke,'” Rice said. So he headed back to bed and “then the bloody thing starts ringing again.” “Suddenly, there is a voice on the other side of the line with a Swedish accent sort of telling me that I had been sort of selected for the sort of Nobel Prize,” Rice recalled. The prestigious Nobel award comes with a gold medal and prize money of 10 million Swedish kronor (over $1,118,000), courtesy of a bequest left 124 years ago by the prize’s creator, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel. Rice said he hasn’t thought about what to do with the prize money. “I’ll probably give it away to some deserving entity,” he told The Associated Press. The medicine prize carried particular significance this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has highlighted the importance that medical research has for societies and economies around the world — and the damage that a single virus can wreak on the planet. Monday’s medicine award is the first of six prizes this year being announced through Oct. 12. The other prizes are for outstanding work in the fields of physics, chemistry, literature, peace and economics.

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