UC Berkeley celebrates Jennifer Doudna winning Nobel Prize in Chemistry

Source: Xinhua| 2020-10-08 05:53:33|Editor: huaxia

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 7 (Xinhua) -- Biochemist Jennifer Doudna on Wednesday won the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, making her "the first woman on the UC Berkeley faculty to win the coveted award," the university said in a statement.

Doudna, the campus' 25th Nobel laureate, shared the prize with Emmanuelle Charpentier for the co-development of CRISPR-Cas9, a genome editing breakthrough that has revolutionized biomedicine, UC Berkeley said.

Doudna and Charpentier were the first women to win a Nobel Prize in the sciences together, according to the university.

Doudna and Charpentier, director of the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology, will share the 10 million Swedish Krona (more than 1 million U.S. dollars) prize.

"Many women think that, no matter what they do, their work will never be recognized the way it would be if they were a man," said Doudna, adding that the prize made a strong statement that "women can do science, women can do chemistry."

CRISPR-Cas9 allows scientists to rewrite DNA -- the code of life -- in any organism, including human cells, with unprecedented efficiency and precision. The groundbreaking power and versatility of CRISPR-Cas9 has opened up new and wide-ranging possibilities across biology, agriculture and medicine, including the treatment of thousands of intractable diseases, UC Berkeley said in the statement.

"This great honor recognizes the history of CRISPR and the collaborative story of harnessing it into a profoundly powerful engineering technology that gives new hope and possibility to our society," said Doudna. "What started as a curiosity-driven, fundamental discovery project has now become the breakthrough strategy used by countless researchers working to help improve the human condition."

"I encourage continued support of fundamental science as well as public discourse about the ethical uses and responsible regulation of CRISPR technology," she added. Enditem