Yoshinori Ohsumi – cell biologist at the Tokyo Institute of Technology – has been awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
Nobel Prizes are annual, extremely prestigious honours, awarded to people for their outstanding contribution to various categories.
Yoshinori won his prize for his “discoveries of mechanisms for autophagy”.
Autophagy is a cell-recycling system, in which cells destroy bacteria and their own contents, in order to keep healthy.
Yoshinori’s research could be crucial in giving us a wider understanding of the development of a number of diseases and disorders.
Alzheimer’s and cancer can form as a result of mutations in autophagy genes, meaning that his work could open doors to new forms of prevention.
Yoshinori has spoken of the honour, reportedly saying, “I’d like to tell young people that not all can be successful in science, but it’s important to rise to the challenge”.
He will receive the award at the Nobel Prize ceremony, on 10 December in Stockholm.