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OIDP Congratulates 2020 Nobel Laureates Who Discovered Hepatitis C Virus

The 2020 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded to American researchers Harvey J. Alter and Charles M. Rice and British-born scientist Michael Houghton, for their discovery of the hepatitis C virus.

Three scientists, including an NIH medical researcher, were awarded the 2020 Nobel Prize in Medicine for their work identifying the hepatitis C virus (HCV). Their discovery of the virus allowed development of diagnostic tests to identify the virus in blood and safe and effective treatments that can cure hepatitis C in one course of treatment. The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine is part of a set of international awards that recognize groundbreaking academic, cultural, or scientific advances.

The HHS Office of Infectious Disease and HIV/AIDS Policy (OIDP) congratulates this year’s winners: Harvey J. Alter, M.D., Senior Scholar at the NIH Clinical Center’s Department of Transfusion Medicine; Michael Houghton, Ph.D., Canada Excellence Research Chair in Virology and the Li Ka Shing professor of virology at the University of Alberta; and Charles M. Rice, Ph.D., professor at Rockefeller University in New York and former scientific and executive director at the Center for the Study of Hepatitis C.

Eliminating Hepatitis C by 2030

The discovery of the hepatitis C virus and subsequent diagnostic and treatment tools allows the United States to make progress towards hepatitis C elimination. OIDP leads development across the federal government of the next Viral Hepatitis National Strategic Plan, a framework for the nation to eliminate viral hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030. The draft Viral Hepatitis National Strategic Plan: A Roadmap to Elimination (2021-2025) is currently open for public comments. See the Federal Register for information on how to submit your comments, which are due to [email protected] no later than 5:00 pm ET on October 8, 2020, to be considered.

Posted In: 
Prevention and Wellness
Public Health and Safety
Tagged: Hepatitis C