The 10Th Annual L’Oreal-Unesco Awards For Women In Science Honor Five Distinguished Women Scientists Group

Paris, 9 November 2007 – In anticipation of World Science Day on November 10th, five distinguished women researchers in the life sciences have been announced as Laureates of the 10th annual L’OREAL-UNESCO Awards For Women in Science. The international Awards Jury for 2008, which was presided by Professor Gunter Blobel, Nobel Prize in Medicine 1999, is made up of 18 eminent members of the scientific community. Professor Christian de Duve, Nobel Prize in Medicine 1974, is the Founding President of the Awards.

The 2008 Award Laureates in life sciences are:

Laureate for Africa & the Arab States: Professor Lihadh AL-GAZALI
Clinical Genetics & Pediatrics, UAE University, United Arab Emirates
“For the characterization of new hereditary diseases”

Laureate for Asia-Pacific: Assistant Professor V. Narry KIM
School of Biological Sciences, Seoul National University, Republic of Korea
“For elucidating several key steps in the formation of a new class of gene-regulating RNA molecules”

Laureate for Europe: Professor Ada YONATH
Structural Biology, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel
“For structural studies of the protein-synthesizing system and the mode of action of antibiotics”

Laureate for Latin America: Professor Ana Belen ELGOYHEN
Institute for Genetic Engineering and Molecular Biology (CONICET), Buenos Aires, Argentina
“For her contribution to the understanding of the molecular basis of hearing”

Laureate for North America: Professor Elizabeth BLACKBURN
Biology and Physiology, University of California, San Francisco, USA
“For the discovery of the nature and maintenance of chromosome ends and their roles in cancer and aging”

The Awards will be presented at a ceremony on March 6th, 2008 at UNESCO headquarters in Paris by Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of UNESCO, and Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones, Chairman of L’Oréal.

Created in 1998, the L’OREAL-UNESCO Awards For Women in Science recognize five laureates annually, one from each of the five continents, who have contributed to the advancement of science. The candidates are proposed by a international network of more than 2,000 scientists.

Ten years of advances in science

The result of a unique partnership, the L’ORÉAL-UNESCO Awards aim to recognize the contributions of outstanding women researchers to scientific progress and encourage the participation of women in scientific research. The Laureates serve as role models for future generations, encouraging young women around the world to follow in their footsteps.

The Awards are conferred in life sciences and material sciences in alternating years. With the 2008 Awards in life sciences, a total of 52 women from 26 countries, whose exemplary careers in science have opened up new and sometimes revolutionary ways of improving human well-being, will have been recognized. Each Laureate receives US$ 100,000.

Through their work in life and material sciences, L’OREAL-UNESCO Awards Laureates are actively tackling the major challenges facing modern science. Award Laureates have made notable advances in such widely diverse fields as ecology and sustainable development; gene therapy and inherited diseases; materials and medicines of the future; and innovative technologies. (

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