Du måste aktivera javascript för att sverigesradio.se ska fungera korrekt och för att kunna lyssna på ljud. Har du problem med vår sajt så finns hjälp på http://kundo.se/org/sverigesradio/

Medicine Nobel for pioneering "self-eating" discovery

Published måndag 3 oktober 2016 kl 11.51
Christer Höög of Nobel Assembly: A system for remodeling, rebuilding in cells
(2:37 min)
Cell biologist Yoshinori Ohsumi has won the Medicine Nobel for 2016.
1 av 2
Cell biologist Yoshinori Ohsumi has won the Medicine Nobel for 2016. Credit: Stina Stjernkvist / TT.
A photo of Yoshinori Ohsumi of Japan can be seen on the screen at the Nobel Forum in Stockholm, after the announcement he won the Nobel Prize in Medicine on October 3, 2016.
2 av 2
A photo of Yoshinori Ohsumi of Japan can be seen on the screen at the Nobel Forum in Stockholm, after the announcement he won the Nobel Prize in Medicine on October 3, 2016. Credit: Jonathan Nackstrand / AFP / TT.

A "very surprised" Yoshinori Ohsumi was named as the sole 2016 laureate of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his discoveries about autophagy - how the body's cells detoxify and repair themselves.

The word autophagy derives from two Greek words meaning “self-eating”, and is a process for degrading and recycling cellular components.

The concept emerged in the 1960's but it was not until the early 1990's and Ohsumi's pioneering studies of bakers yeast which identified 15 genes that regulate the "self eating" process.

"Ohsumi's discoveries led to a new paradigm in our understanding of how the cell recycles its content," said Thomas Perlman, Secretary of the Nobel Committee at Sweden's Karolinska Institute when awarding the prize of SEK 8 million.

The Nobel Assembly said that the 71-year-old Japanese microbiologist's work is also important to help explain what goes wrong in a range of diseases, from cancer to Parkinson's.

The prize for Physiology or Medicine is the first of the Nobel prizes awarded each year. The winners of the physics, chemistry and peace prizes are to be announced later this week.

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
Har du frågor eller förslag gällande våra webbtjänster?

Kontakta gärna Sveriges Radios supportforum där vi besvarar dina frågor vardagar kl. 9-17.

Du hittar dina sparade avsnitt i menyn under "Min lista".