Profile of Nobel Prize winner Katarina Kariko, who was forced to retire

Bisnis.com, JAKARTA – Awards Nobel in the field of physiology or medicine took place again this year and was won by the developer of the Covid-19 mRNA vaccine technology.

Katalin Karikó, one of this year’s Nobel Prize winners, is a biochemist and researcher best known for her contributions to mRNA technology and COVID-19 vaccines.

Karikó and his colleague Drew Weissman discovered the modified mRNA technology used in the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines to prevent Covid-19 infection.

More than 15 years ago at Penn Medicine, Karikó and Weissman discovered a way to modify mRNA and then developed a delivery technique to package the mRNA into lipid nanoparticles.

This allows the mRNA to reach the right places in the body and trigger an immune response to fight the disease.

This laboratory breakthrough makes mRNA safe, effective and practical for use as a vaccine against Covid-19.

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine received FDA approval in August 2021, and the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine was authorized by the FDA for emergency use.

Almost got kicked out and told to retire immediately

Katalin Karikó, one of the winners of the 2023 Nobel Prize, honors his extraordinary achievements. He expressed his joy at winning the famous award.

In a video uploaded on India Today, he also stated that he was almost thrown out and forced into retirement 10 years ago. However, with the support of her husband and family, she continued her work.

Profile of Katalin Karikó

Citing Penn Medicine’s official website, Karikó is a senior vice president at BioNTech and an assistant professor of neurosurgery at the University of Pennsylvania.

He joined the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine in 1989 and began working with Weissman in 1997.

Karikó received a bachelor’s degree in biology in 1978 and a doctorate in biochemistry in 1982 from the University of Szeged in his native Hungary. He worked at the Biological Research Center of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Szeged before emigrating to the United States in 1985.

Through this Nobel Prize, Katalin Karikó and Drew Weissman share prize money of 1.02 million US dollars or around 15.5 billion rupees.

The mRNA vaccine developed by the two has been administered more than 13 billion times. Together, these two honorees have saved millions of lives, prevented severe Covid-19 illness, reduced the overall burden of disease and enabled society to return to normal pre-pandemic life.

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