Two Japanese professors awarded esteemed medical research prize
Two Japanese professors will be awarded the 2015 Canada Gairdner International Awards, an esteemed medical research prize considered to be a good predictor of future Nobel Prize winners, the Gairdner Foundation said Wednesday.
The two are Yoshinori Osumi, a 70-year-old honorary professor at Tokyo Institute of Technology, and Shimon Sakaguchi, a 64-year-old professor at Osaka University.
According to the foundation, Osumi was “the first person to visually observe the function of autophagy (self-eating), whereby cells clean up the garbage within them by killing invaders and keeping healthy cells.”
“Autophagy is now regarded as a vital cell-recycling system and may aid in future developments to treat neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, cancer and other age-related diseases,” it said.