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Medical News & Perspectives
November 12, 2008

Nobel Prize Honors HIV, HPV Discoveries

JAMA. 2008;300(18):2109. doi:10.1001/jama.2008.616

Researchers who discovered two of the most significant viruses that cause human disease were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for 2008.

Françoise Barré-Sinoussi , PhD, of the Institut Pasteur and Luc Montagnier , PhD, of the World Foundation for AIDS Research and Prevention, both in Paris, France, were honored for their discovery of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The prize was shared with Harald zur Hausen , MD, of the German Cancer Research Centre in Heidelberg, Germany, who hypothesized and proved that the human papilloma virus (HPV) causes cervical cancer, a finding that laid the foundation for current standardized cervical cancer screening and prevention strategies used around the globe.