Professors Katalin Kariko and Drew Weissman have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their pioneering work in developing the technology behind mRNA Covid vaccines. Before the pandemic, this technology was experimental, but it has since been administered to millions globally to combat severe Covid-19. The same technology is now under investigation for potential treatments for other diseases, including cancer. Traditional vaccines typically use dead or weakened versions of the virus or bacterium, whereas mRNA vaccines employ a different method. Both the Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech Covid vaccines utilize mRNA technology. The two professors began their collaboration in the early 1990s at the University of Pennsylvania. Despite skepticism from the scientific community about mRNA's potential, they persisted in their research. Upon learning about their Nobel Prize win, both professors initially doubted the authenticity of the news, with Professor Weissman suspecting a prank by an anti-vaxxer, but they were overjoyed upon confirmation.
Photo Credit: Brands&People