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Albany Medical Center Prize

One of America's Largest Prizes in Medicine

Esteemed Cell Biologist Honored for Landmark Discoveries

Albany Price in Medicine and Biomedical Research

America's Most Distinguished Prize in Medicine


Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine

Alexander Varshavsky, Ph.D., is the 2014 Recipient of America’s Most Distinguished Prize in Medicine

Alexander Varshavsky, Ph.D., whose lifetime landmark discoveries transformed the understanding of how cell behavior impacts diseases including cancer, autoimmune disorders and other illnesses, has been awarded the prestigious Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research for 2014. Dr. Varshavsky is the Howard and Gwen Laurie Smits Professor of Cell Biology at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena, CA. The $500,000 award has been given annually since 2001 to those who have altered the course of medical research and is one of the largest prizes in medicine and science in the United States. It will be awarded on May 21 during a celebration in Albany, NY, at Albany Medical Center.

Dr. Varshavsky received the award for his discoveries related to fundamental aspects of cellular mechanisms that control such vital processes as cell growth and division, responses to stress, and many other biological processes. His insights into what is known as the “ubiquitin system of intracellular protein degradation” underlie one of most promising and active avenues for development of new drugs for treating cancer, neurodegeneration syndromes, autoimmune disorders, and other major diseases.   It has been estimated that studies focused on the ubiquitin system and regulated protein degradation encompass, by now, 30 to 40 percent of all biomedical research worldwide.

Dr. Varshavsky will present a special Grand Rounds lecture at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 21, 2014, at Albany Medical College (Room ME-700).

Alexander Varshavsky, Ph.D. biography

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The $500,000 Prize is one of the largest awards in medicine and science in the United States.

View the Press Release