Monday, October 06, 2008

French discoverers of Aids get half a Nobel

The virologists Luc Montagnier and Françoise Barré-Sinoussi who discovered the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes Aids were rewarded with half the 2008 Nobel Prize for Medicine... shared with the German scientist Harold zur Hausen who detected a link between human papilloma viruses (HPV) and cervical cancer. This is the first time since 1980 that French researchers have received a Nobel prize in medicine. This attribution of a Nobel prize to Montagnier and Barré-Sinoussi should end the dispute with the American Robert Gallo concerning the honor of having discovered the Aids virus. The Nobel citation insisted upon the fact that science and medicine were exceptionally rapid in discovering this new disease entity, identifying its origin, and providing treatment for victims.

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