HHMI investigators Stephen Elledge, Roel Nusse and Huda Zoghbi are among the scientists honored for transformative advances toward understanding living systems and extending human life.
- The Breakthrough Prizes recognize pioneering work in physics and genetics, cosmology, and neurology and mathematics.
- Founded in 2013, the Breakthrough Prize Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to advancing breakthrough research, celebrating scientists and generating excitement about the pursuit of science as a career.
The Breakthrough Prize Foundation announced this evening that Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigators Stephen Elledge of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Roel Nusse of Stanford University, and Huda Zoghbi of Baylor College of Medicine are among scientists awarded this year’s Breakthrough Prizes in Life Sciences. The prizes honor transformative advances toward understanding living systems and extending human life.
The Breakthrough Prizes recognize pioneering work in physics and genetics, cosmology, and neurology and mathematics. Each prize carries an award of $3 million. The Breakthrough Prize Symposium will be held at the University of California, San Francisco and begins at 10 a.m., PST, on December 5, 2016.
“There has never been a more important time to support science,” said Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. “The 2017 Breakthrough Prize laureates represent the leaders in scientific research in physics, math and life sciences. Their breakthroughs will unlock new possibilities and help make the world a better place for everyone.”
Elledge was recognized for elucidating how eukaryotic cells sense and respond to damage in their DNA and for providing insights into the development and treatment of cancer. Nusse was selected for pioneering research on the Wnt pathway, one of the crucial intercellular signaling systems in development, cancer and stem cell biology. Zoghbi was honored for discoveries of the genetic causes and biochemical mechanisms of spinocerebellar ataxia and Rett syndrome, findings that have provided insight into the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative and neurological diseases.
Prize recipients are invited to serve on the selection committee to select recipients of future prizes. Last year, HHMI investigators Karl Deisseroth of Stanford University and Helen Hobbs of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center were awarded Breakthrough Prizes in Life Sciences. Winners are chosen by selection committees, comprised of prior Breakthrough Prize laureates.
Founded in 2013, the Breakthrough Prize Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to advancing breakthrough research, celebrating scientists, and generating excitement about the pursuit of science as a career. The Breakthrough Prizes were founded by Sergey Brin and Anne Wojcicki, Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan, and Yuri and Julia Milner.
The Howard Hughes Medical Institute plays an important role in advancing scientific research and education in the United States. Its scientists, located across the country and around the world, have made important discoveries that advance both human health and our fundamental understanding of biology. The Institute also aims to transform science education into a creative, interdisciplinary endeavor that reflects the excitement of real research. HHMI's headquarters are located in Chevy Chase, Maryland, just outside Washington, D.C.