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Cell transport scientists receive Nobel Prize

By News team

A trio of scientists who between them identified how cells transport material has been awarded the 2013 Nobel Prize for physiology or medicine.

James Rothman, of Yale University, Randy Schekman, of the University of California at Berkeley, and Thomas Südhof, of Stanford University, have each been working on the principles that govern how molecules are delivered to cells with exact precision.

Professor Schekman discovered a set of genes required for vesicle traffic; Professor Rothman unravelled protein machinery that allows vesicles to fuse with their targets to permit transfer of cargo; and Professor Südhof revealed how signals instruct vesicles to release their cargo with precision.

The prize committee said their discoveries “give an insight into disease processes”, since disturbances in this precise transport system can “contribute to neurological diseases, diabetes and immunological disorders”.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2013.11128281

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