February 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
11 Inaugural winners receive
US$3 million each for Groundbreaking Achievements in Life Science Research
Priscilla Chan and
Yuri Milner announced today the launch of the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences ("Breakthrough Prize"), recognizing excellence in research aimed at curing intractable diseases and extending human life. The prize will be administered by the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences Foundation, a not-for-profit corporation ("Foundation") dedicated to advancing breakthrough research, celebrating scientists and generating excitement about the pursuit of science as a career.
The first 11 recipients of the Breakthrough Prize are:
- Cornelia I. Bargmann
- David Botstein
- Lewis C. Cantley
- Hans Clevers
- Napoleone Ferrara
- Titia de Lange
- Eric S. Lander
- Charles L. Sawyers
- Bert Vogelstein
- Robert A. Weinberg
- Shinya Yamanaka
All prize winners have agreed to serve on the Selection Committee of the Foundation to choose recipients of future prizes.
Founding sponsors of the Breakthrough Prize include
, who collectively have agreed to establish 5 annual prizes,
each, going forward.
, Chairman of the Board of Apple and Chairman and former CEO of Genentech, will serve as the Chairman of the Board of the Foundation, while additional directors will include
"I am delighted to announce the launch of the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences and welcome its first recipients," said
. "I believe this new prize will shine a light on the extraordinary achievements of the outstanding minds in the field of life sciences, enhance medical innovation, and ultimately become a platform for recognizing future discoveries. I also want to thank our founding sponsors,
. Without their contribution, this prize would not have been possible."
"We are thrilled to support scientists who think big, take risks and have made a significant impact on our lives. These scientists should be household names and heros in society," said
"Curing a disease should be worth more than a touchdown," said
"Priscilla and I are honored to be part of this," said
. "We believe the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences has the potential to provide a platform for other models of philanthropy, so people everywhere have an opportunity at a better future."
"Solving the enormous complexity of human diseases calls for a much bigger effort compared to fundamental physics and therefore requires multiple sponsors to reward outstanding achievements," said
Going forward, each year's prize winners will join the Selection Committee for future awardees. One of the distinguishing characteristics of the Breakthrough Prize will be a transparent selection process, in which anyone will be able to nominate a candidate online for consideration. Also, the prize can be shared between any number of deserving scientists and can be received more than once. In addition, there are no age restrictions for nominees.
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