01:50 GMT +317 October 2019
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    The Nobel Prize laureates for Medicine or Physiology 2018 are James P. Allison, US and Tasuku Honjo, Japan

    Nobel Prizes in Physiology or Medicine Awarded For Discovery of Cancer Therapy

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    American immunologist James Allison and Japanese immunologist Tasuku Honjo have been jointly awarded the 2018 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for their discoveries in cancer therapy, the Nobel Committee at the Karolinska Institute stated.

    The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, administered by the Nobel Foundation, is awarded yearly for outstanding discoveries in the fields of life sciences and medicine.

    Tasuku Honjo has discovered a protein on immune cells and revealed that it also operates as a brake, but with a different mechanism of action.

    "Therapies based on his discovery proved to be strikingly effective in the fight against cancer," the Nobel Committee posted on Twitter.

    "The ‘Immune checkpoint therapy’ has revolutionized cancer treatment and has fundamentally changed the way we view how cancer can be managed," the Nobel Committe said in a statement.

    According to the press service, Allison studied a protein that functions as a brake on the immune system. The scientist developed a new approach for treating cancer patients by releasing the brake and unleashing the immune cells to attack tumors, the academy specified.

    Allison is a professor at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and the director of the US Cancer Research Institute Scientific Advisory Council. Honjo is a professor at the Department of Immunology and Genomic Medicine at Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine.

    READ MORE: Haruki Murakami Withdraws His Nomination for Alternative Nobel Award — Reports

    The Nobel prize for laureates is a sum of nine million Swedish kronor (about $1.01 million or 870,000 euros) that will be given to them from King Carl XVI Gustaf at a formal ceremony in Stockholm on December 10.

    The Nobel Prize announcements will last until October 8.

    Last year, US geneticists Jeffrey Hall, Michael Rosbash and Michael Young became Nobel Prize laureates in physiology or medicine for their research on the role of genes in setting the "circadian clock" which regulates sleep and eating patterns, hormones and body temperature.​


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