Russian-American biochemist Alexander Jacob Varshavsky received the Debrecen Award for Molecular Medicine this year; the professor received the recognition on Tuesday, at a ceremony organized in the hall of the University of Debrecen (DE), and then gave a lecture about his scientific activities, the institution’s press center announced.
According to a press release, the worker in the United States advocates that it is due to the discovery of the most internationally professional protein degradation processes realized through ubiquitin.
The Debrecen Award for Molecular Medicine was founded in 2003.
The recognition is awarded to the researcher or the research group who obtains research for the development of molecular medicine,
and its results can be used in modern patient care.
The awardees, chosen annually by the professors of the Faculty of General Medicine at DE, include key figures in the field of life sciences, such as Craig Venter, the apostle of the study of human genetic material, or Ralph Steinman, who – after the Debrecen Prize – was also awarded the Nobel Prize for the discovery of dendritic cells, considered the conductor of the immune system. , as well as Sir Stephen O’Rahilly, awarded in 2014 for the discovery of the genetic mechanisms responsible for obesity.
Last year, Katalin Karikó, a Széchenyi Prize-winning Hungarian research biologist and biochemist living in the United States, who patented the technology of synthetic mRNA vaccines, received the award. In 2020, based on Katalin Karikó and Drew Weissman’s patent, the world’s first clinically proven third-generation Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against Covid-19 was completed (Comirnaty).
This year’s recipient, Professor Alexander J. Varshavsky, is a molecular biologist and works with his biochemical work group at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.
The focus of his research is the controlled breakdown of proteins responsible for the properties of cells, and other ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis, they wrote in the announcement.
Thanks to Professor Varshavsky’s work, the interpretation of aging, cancer, neurodegenerative syndromes, immunological disorders, congenital diseases and many other diseases, as well as the development of new, effective treatments, were announced in the justification for awarding the award.