Elizabeth Murchison won the award for her ground-breaking work with the Tasmanian Devil. Photo: The Wellcome Trust
A researcher at the Wellcome Sanger Trust Institute in Cambridge, UK, has won the 17th Eppendorf Award for Young European Investigators.
This year’s award will be officially presented to Elizabeth Murchison on 9 May at the EMBL Advanced Training Centre in Heidelberg, Germany.
Murchison receives the prize for her discoveries concerning a deadly cancer that is spreading among the endemic population of Tasmanian devils in Tasmania and threatening the survival of the species. She found that the cancers are all derived from the same clone, leading to the conclusion that cancer cells are physically transferred between animals.
The results are ground-breaking and offer novel approaches towards the understanding of clonal cancers. Furthermore, her findings have been instrumental for developing strategies aimed at saving the Tasmanian devil from extinction, Eppendorf says.
The Eppendorf Young Investigator Award, established in 1995, honours outstanding work in biomedical research and supports young European scientists up to the age of 35.
The Eppendorf Award is presented in partnership with the scientific journal Nature.