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Benjamin L. Ebert receives Sjöberg Prize for breakthrough research on blood cancer

Benjamin L. Ebert, USA, receives this yr’s Sjöberg Prize, price a million US {dollars}, for his analysis into how lenalidomide works as a therapy for blood most cancers. His discovery of the mechanism that promotes protein breakdown in most cancers cells could also be vitally necessary to the long run growth of latest prescribed drugs.

The story of this pharmaceutical begins with a tragedy as, within the 1950s and 1960s, pregnant ladies with extreme morning illness had been typically given thalidomide. This triggered a variety of beginning defects and the remedy was faraway from the market.

Years later, thalidomide and, specifically, a brand new substance known as lenalidomide, had been proven to be efficient within the therapy of some bone marrow illnesses. Nevertheless, researchers didn’t perceive precisely why they labored.

That is the place Benjamin L. Ebert enters the stage, as he mapped the mechanism liable for the substance’s operate. Lenalidomide acts like glue, redirecting the proteins which are essential for the most cancers cell’s survival to the cell’s waste disposal, the place they’re damaged down. This results in the loss of life of the cell.

This precept is necessary and the mechanism itself could be very elegant. As well as, this was a wholly new idea.”


Bengt Westermark, Chair of the Prize Committee

He calls Benjamin Ebert’s discovery “epoch-making” and believes that will probably be extraordinarily necessary within the growth of latest most cancers medicine.

“To date, the best medical profit is within the therapy of a number of myeloma, which is a bone marrow illness. Most of the proteins that drive most cancers progress have confirmed tough to focus on utilizing prescribed drugs. Benjamin Ebert’s discovery reveals that it could be doable to direct such proteins in order that they’re degraded and thus cease the expansion of the tumour.”

The Sjöberg Prize is awarded as 100,000 US {dollars} within the type of a private prize and 900,000 US {dollars} that have to be used for continued analysis. This shall be extraordinarily helpful for Benjamin L. Ebert, who’s an lively researcher in the course of his profession.

“It´s actually an exquisite sum of money for the laboratory. We´ll be capable of ask increasingly more daring questions and head into novel areas. I used to be definitely not anticipating this, he says.”

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