The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization on 22 October announced that three scientists from China, the United States and Ireland shared 2019 UNESCO-Equatorial Guinea International Prize for Research in the Life Sciences.
Chinese professor Tu Youyou, along with American doctor Cato Laurencin and Professor Kevin McGuigan from Ireland, won the fifth edition of the award following their “outstanding scientific research projects in the life sciences that have led to an improvement in the quality of human life.”
Tu Youyou, laureate of the 2015 Nobel Prize for Medicine, “is recognized for her research into parasitic diseases. She discovered an entirely new anti-malarial treatment, artemisinin, which made possible the treatment of thousands of patients in China in the 1980s,” UNESCO said in a press release.
The prize also rewarded “the fundamental contribution of Dr. Cato Laurencin to regenerative engineering applied to the development of biomaterials for clinical use; stem cell science, nanotechnology and drug delivery systems.”
According to the Paris-based UN body, the Irish laureate is recognized “for his cutting-edge research on the development and implementation of solar water disinfection technology to combat waterborne diseases among people without access to safe drinking water in Africa and Asia.”
The winners will share a financial award worth 350,000 U.S. dollars and each will receive a statuette by the Equatorial Guinean artist Leandro Mbomio Nsue, and a diploma.
The award ceremony will take place at the African Union Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, during the African Union Heads of State Summit in February 2020. [APBN]