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Medical News & Perspectives
November 5, 2003

2003 Nobels Awarded for Pioneering Research in MRI, Cellular Channels

JAMA. 2003;290(17):2245-2246. doi:10.1001/jama.290.17.2245

The 2003 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine rewarded a chemist and a physicist who had no inkling their work would lead to medical applications, while the Nobel Prize in Chemistry went to a pair of bench researchers who discovered how cells regulate water and ion transport.

Spin doctors

Paul Lauterbur, PhD, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and Peter Mansfield, PhD, Nottingham University, London, England, won the $1.3 million prize for physiology or medicine for discoveries that led to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Both men said that they did not foresee their work leading to a revolutionary medical technology involving some 60 million imaging scans each year .