The Swedish Karolinska Institute in Stockholm announced on Monday (October 7, 2019) that Americans William Kyleen, Greg Siemensa and British Sir Peter Ratcliffe have won the 2019 Nobel Prize for Medicine, discovering molecular mechanisms in which cells sense oxygen content and adapt to its levels. The award committee said knowledge of these mechanisms is important for the treatment of many diseases, adding that the finding paved the way for highly promising strategies to combat anemia, cancers and many other diseases.


"The intrinsic importance of oxygen has been known for centuries, but the process of adapting cells to fluctuations in oxygen levels has been a mystery for a long time," said the Karolinska Institute's Nobel Council. "This year's Nobel Prize rewards work that has revealed the molecular mechanisms responsible for adapting cells to the fluctuating oxygen level," he said.