The international scientific community will gather for the 18th edition of the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Awards to celebrate five exceptional women scientists and their ground breaking works.
The event scheduled for March 24 this year will also celebrate 15 promising young researchers for their accomplishment so far in the area of science and technology.
In the face of unprecedented global challenges, from climate change to healthcare to sustainable energy, their discoveries are offering new solutions and answering vital questions. They are proving time and time again that women in science have the power to change the world, according to the organizers.
This year, five brilliant women are recognised from each of the following regions: Africa and the Arab States, Asia-Pacific, Europe, Latin America and North America.
The five Laureates were nominated by more than 2,600 leading scientists and then selected by an independent and international jury of 13 prominent scientists in the global scientific community.
Professor Elizabeth H. Blackburn, 2008 Laureate L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science, 2009 winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, is this year President of the jury and the first woman to be at the head of the Jury in the history of the Awards.
The 5 Laureates will be awarded on March 24 at the Grand Amphitheater of the Sorbonne in Paris and will receive a Prize of €100,000 each to reward their contribution to science. They include:
AFRICA AND THE ARAB STATES
Professor Quarraisha ABDOOL KARIM
CAPRISA, Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
FOR CONTROLLING THE SPREAD OF HIV.
36.9 million people live with HIV infection worldwide. Professor Abdool Karim’s research has empowered women to help prevent HIV infection in Africa.
Professor Hualan CHEN
Harbin Veterinary Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Harbin, China
FOR PROTECTING LIVES FROM DEADLY FLU VIRUSES.
Thanks to her research, the world has been protected from pandemics through innovative vaccines.
Professor Andrea GAMARNIK
Molecular Virology Laboratory, Fundación Instituto Leloir, Conicet, Buenos Aires, Argentina
FOR LIMITING THE SPREAD OF DENGUE VIRUS.
Every year, 390 million people suffer from Dengue infection. Professor Gamarnik’s research has the potential to control the spread of the disease.
Professor Emmanuelle CHARPENTIER
Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology, Berlin, Germany
FOR REINVENTING GENETIC RESEARCH.
There are over 10,000 incurable conditions caused by single genetic defects. The gene editing technology developed by Professor Charpentier has the power to “rewrite” DNA.
Professor Jennifer DOUDNA
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley, United States
FOR REINVENTING GENETIC RESEARCH.
There are over 10,000 incurable conditions caused by single genetic defects. The gene editing technology developed by Professor Doudna has the power to “rewrite” DNA.
For Professor Blackburn, the “2016’s laureates bring an extraordinary vision and immediate solutions to major human health issues, encompassing HIV, avian flu or dengue fever and have revolutionized genome editing, enabling precise ‘rewriting’ of the DNA genetic code. All their careers are exceptional, their discoveries truly new, and they epitomize top-level research.”