For discovering the cure for the deadly Hepatitis B, three British scientist have been honoured with the Nobel prize.
Houghton, Harvey Alter and Charles Rice won Nobel Prize for their discovery
Three British scientists – Michael Houghton, Harvey Alter and Charles Rice have jointly won the 2020 Nobel Prize in Medicine for discovery of Hepatitis B cure.
This was made public by the Nobel Prize Committee who said their discoveries ultimately “saved millions of lives”.
The virus is a common cause of liver cancer and a major reason why people need a liver transplant.
More than 300 million people have chronic liver infections globally and about 600,000 people die annually from acute or chronic complications of Hepatitis B infection.
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The highest prevalence of Hepatitis B infection is in sub-Saharan Africa with about 19 million Nigerians living with the disease.
Majority of the people in these regions become infected during childhood and between 5–10% of the adult population is chronically infected.
In the 1960s, there was huge concern that people receiving donated blood were getting chronic hepatitis (liver inflammation) from an unknown, mysterious disease.