This year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry was given to three scientists who made vital contributions in the study of how cells repair DNA and maintain genomic integrity. Dr. Tomas Lindahl from Francis Crick Institute had discoveries in base excision repair, the pathway that constitutes the bulk of DNA restoration during the cell cycle from alkylation, methylation, and oxidative stress. Dr. Paul Modrich from Duke University was recognized for his efforts in elucidating how cells resolve errors that happen during DNA replication. Dr. Aziz Sancar from the University of North Carolina was acknowledged for his pioneering study on the nucleotide excision repair pathway.
The discoveries of these three Nobel laureates provided essential insights into how cells function and maintain their genomic stability. This knowledge is integral to the development of new cancer treatments, and lately find application in crop improvement through new breeding techniques.