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UK and Japanese scientists receive Nobel Medicine Prize for stem cell study

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Kyoto University Professor Shinya Yamanaka (L) and John Gurdon of the Gurdon Institute in Cambridge

John Gurdon from the UK and Shinya Yamanaka from Japan have won the 2012 Nobel Prize for medicine or physiology for their research on stem cell.

Both scientists were awarded for their groundbreaking discovery of changing adult cells into stem cells, which can become any other type of cell in the body.

The Nobel committee called the discovery, which may be used for treating diseases like Parkinson’s and diabetes by growing customized tissue for transplant, “revolutionized” science.

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine is awarded once a year by the Swedish Karolinska Institute.

The first Medicine Nobel Prize was awarded in 1901 to the German physiologist Emil Adolf von Behring, for his work on “serum therapy.”

The medicine award was this year’s Nobel Prize first announcement. The physics award will be released on October 9, followed by chemistry on October 10, literature on October 11 and the Nobel Peace Prize on October 12.

The economics prize, which was not among the original awards, was established by the Swedish central bank in 1968, and will be announced on Oct. 15.


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