Canadian Manufacturing

COVID-19 vaccine creators win prestigious Spanish prize

The awards are among the most prestigious in the Spanish-speaking world

June 23, 2021  by The Associated Press

MADRID (AP) — Seven researchers whose work contributed to designing COVID-19 vaccines have won Spain’s prestigious Princess of Asturias award for scientific research.

The award panel announced it had chosen Hungary’s Katalin Kariko, Americans Drew Weissman and Philip Felgner, Germany’s U?ur ?ahin and ?zlem Tureci, Canadian Derrick Rossi and Sarah Gilbert of the United Kingdom as this year’s prizewinners.

The panel said the seven were “leading figures in one of the most outstanding feats in the history of science.”

“With their long careers in pure research, they led the way to innovative applications such as obtaining, in an extraordinarily short space of time, effective vaccines to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic,” the citation said.

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“Their work constitutes a prime example of the importance of pure research for the protection of public health the world over,” it added.

The annual 50,000-euro ($60,000) award is one of eight Asturias prizes handed out each year by a foundation named for Crown Princess Leonor. Other categories include art, sport and social sciences.

The awards are among the most prestigious in the Spanish-speaking world. An awards ceremony typically takes place in October in the northern Spanish city of Oviedo.