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HFSP Nakasone Award

Angelika Amon

2020 - Angelika Amon

Angelika Amon of the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT has been awarded the 2020 HFSP Nakasone Award for 'discovering aneuploidy-induced cellular changes and their contribution to tumorigenesis.'

Michael Hall

2019 - Michael Hall

Michael N. Hall of the Biozentrum at the University of Basel in Switzerland is awarded the 2019 HFSP Nakasone Award for the 'discovery of the master regulator of cell growth, the target of rapamycin (TOR) kinase.'  

 

S Paabo

2018 - Svante Pääbo

Svante Pääbo received the 2018 HFSP Nakasone Award for his discovery of the extent to which hybridization with Neanderthals and Denisovans has shaped the evolution of modern humans, and his development of techniques for sequencing DNA from fossils.

D Julius

2017 - David Julius

David Julius was awarded the 2017 HFSP Nakasone Award for his 'discovery of the molecular mechanism of thermal sensing in animals' because it has defined a field of sensory reception.

Charpentier and Doudna

2016 - Emmanuelle Charpentier & Jennifer Doudna

Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna have been awarded the  2016 HFSP Nakasone Award for their seminal work on the CRISPR-Cas9 system.

J Collins

2015 - James Collins

James Collins received the 2015 HFSP Nakasone Award for his innovative work on synthetic gene networks and programmable cells that launched the exciting field of synthetic biology.

 

U Alon

2014 - Uri Alon

Uri Alon received the 2014 HFSP Nakasone Award for his pioneering work in discovering network motifs, which provided the single most important foundation of the field of systems biology, opening up the previously impenetrable complexity of genetic circuits to systematic analysis and understanding.

S Quake

2013 - Stephen Quake

Stephen Quake of Stanford University received the 2013 HFSP Nakasone Award for his prolific inventions that advanced biological measurement techniques. 

G Turrigiano

2012 - Gina Turrigiano

The 2012 HFSP Nakasone Award has been conferred upon Gina Turrigiano at Brandeis University for her pioneering work on homeostatic plasticity in the nervous system.

M Elowitz

2011- Michael Elowitz

The 2011 HFSP Nakasone Award has been conferred upon Michael Elowitz of the California Institute of Technology for his pioneering work on gene expression noise.

K Deisseroth

2010 - Karl Deisseroth

The first HFSP Nakasone Award has been conferred upon Karl Deisseroth of Stanford University for his pioneering work on the development of optogenetic methods for studying the function of neuronal networks underlying behavior.

2021 HFSP Nakasone Award
 

The call for nominations for the 2021 HFSP Nakasone Award is now closed. The next call for nominations will open in spring 2O21.

Nominations are invited for the 2021 HFSP Nakasone Award.  Nominations must be submitted using the simple nomination form, which can be downloaded HERE.  Instructions are included in the form.

Proposers must provide:

1. The completed nomination form
2. The candidates CV

Nominations are to be submitted by 24 April 2020 by email to Click here to show mail address

The idea for the establishment of the prestigious HFSP Nakasone Award was proposed in Tokyo in July 2009 during the HFSP 20th anniversary celebrations in the presence of former Prime Minister Nakasone. The award honours the vision of former Prime Minister Nakasone for his efforts to launch a program of support for international collaboration and to foster early career scientists in a global context. Mr. Nakasone presented the idea of the Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP) at the G7 economic summit in Venice in 1987 and, after an intense phase of preparation, the International Human Frontier Science Program Organization was established in Strasbourg, France in the autumn of 1989 to implement the Program. Since then it has supported approximately 7000 scientists from 70 countries, 28 of whom have gone on to win the Nobel Prize.

The HFSP Nakasone Award is designed to honour scientists who have undertaken frontier-moving research in biology, encompassing conceptual, experimental or technological breakthroughs. Both senior and junior scientists are eligible and peer-recognised excellence is the major criterion for selection. However, the jury will pay particular attention to recent breakthroughs by younger scientists. The prize is open to all scientists, not only those who have received funding within the HFSP.

The awardee(s) will receive an unrestricted research grant of USD 10,000, a medal and a personalised certificate. The award ceremony will be held at the annual HFSP Awardees Meeting, where the awardee will deliver the HFSP Nakasone Lecture.

Proposers should take into account the following points when choosing nominees:

The award is for scientific excellence of a clearly defined discovery or series of discoveries in basic life science research, in accord with HFSP’s mission to support basic research into the “complex mechanisms of living organisms”. Areas have traditionally ranged from molecular and cellular approaches to biological functions to systems neuroscience including cognitive functions. However, all levels of complexity involving mechanisms of biological phenomena or the interactions between organisms will be considered.

The discovery or discoveries shall:

  • be frontier contributions to knowledge in the life sciences;
  • have resulted in a notable conceptual breakthrough that has had significant consequences for scientists throughout the world;
  • be identifiable via (a) specific publication(s).

Experimental, conceptual and technological contributions are all eligible.

The award is not for life-time achievement.

Eligibility:

This is an open award, not restricted to HFSP funded scientists and there are no restrictions on who may be nominated. However, HFSP has a focus on early career scientists through its Fellowship and Research Grant funding programs and so nominations of scientists who have achieved a recent significant breakthrough at an early stage of their careers are especially encouraged.

Both the nomination and the nominees may be from any country.

Up to three scientists may be jointly nominated and share the HFSP Nakasone Award. These scientists should be co-authors on breakthrough publications or collaborators of key discoveries. Separate nominees for the same breakthrough will not be considered.

Self-nominations are not accepted.

Coordinated multiple nominations for a candidate(s) will be considered as a single nomination. While nominations for a scientist may be submitted by several different parties, there is no advantage to submitting several nominations for the same person. Multiple nominations will be merged for the purpose of the review.

Members of the HFSPO Board of Trustees and Council of Scientists are not eligible for nomination and may not nominate candidates in order to avoid a perception of conflict of interest. The current members may be consulted here: Board of Trustees; Council of Scientists.  

Previous Awardees

2020 Angelika Amon of the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT, Cambridge, USA for discovering aneuploidy-induced cellular changes and their contribution to tumorigenesis.

2019 Michael Hall of the Biozentrum at the University of Basel, Switzerland for the discovery of the master regulator of cell growth, the target of rapamycin (TOR) kinase. 

2018 Svante Pääbo from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany for his discovery of the extent to which hybridization with Neanderthals and Denisovans has shaped the evolution of modern humans, and his development of techniques for sequencing DNA from fossils.

2017 David Julius from the University of California San Francisco, USA for his discovery of the molecular mechanism of thermal sensing in animals.

2016 Emmanuelle Charpentier from the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin, Germany and Jennifer Doudna from the University of California at Berkeley, USA for their groundbreaking work on the CRISPR-Cas 9 system.

2015 James Collins from Boston University, USA for his innovative work on synthetic gene networks and programmable cells.

2014 Uri Alon from the Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel for his groundbreaking work on network motifs.

2013 Stephen Quake from Stanford University, USA for his pioneering work advancing biological measurement techniques.

2012 Gina Turrigiano from Brandeis University, Waltham, USA for introducing the concept of homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

2011 Michael Elowitz from the California Institute of Technology, USA for his key studies on gene expression noise.

2010 Karl Deisseroth  from Stanford University, USA for his pioneering work on the application of microbial opsins as "optogenetic" tools in neurobiology.