Yoshinori Ohsumi wins Nobel prize in medicine

Yoshinori Ohsumi wins Nobel prize in medicine

Yoshinori Ohsumi wins Nobel prize in medicine

Written by Staff Writer

04 Oct, 2016 | 4:33 pm

Yoshinori Ohsumi, a Japanese cell biologist specializing in autophagy and a professor in Tokyo Institute of Technology’s Frontier Research Centre, won Nobel prize in medicine for work on autophagy.

He has been awarded this prize for his discoveries on how cells break down and recycle their own components.

Autophagy is the body’s internal recycling programme – scrap cell components are captured and the useful parts are stripped out to generate energy or build new cells. The process is crucial for preventing cancerous growths, warding off infection and, by maintaining a healthy metabolism, it helps protect against conditions like diabetes

Speaking to reporters, on Monday October 3, Ohsumi said, “As a boy, the Nobel prize was a dream, but after starting my research, it was out of my picture.”

He went on to note that he chose to focus on the cell’s waste disposal system, an unfashionable subject at the time, as he wanted to work on something different.

He added, “I don’t feel comfortable competing with many people, and instead I find it more enjoyable doing something nobody else is doing”…”in a way, that’s what science is all about, and the joy of finding something inspires me.”

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