The 2015 Nobel prize in medicine or physiology has been won by William C Campbell, Satoshi Ōmura and Youyou Tu.
Campbell and Ōmura discovered a new drug Avermectin, the derivatives of which have radically lowered the incidence of river blindness and lymphatic filariasis, caused by roundworm parasites.
Tu, the 12th woman to win the medicine prize, discovered Artemisinin, a drug that has significantly reduced the mortality rates for patients suffering from malaria.
We joined over 4000 people online to witness the announcement in the auditorium at The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm before delving into the background of these scientists work.
As with the vast majority of the work awarded Nobel prizes in the past, animal research played a key part in their work.
Avermectin is used for and was tested on sheep, cattle and poultry: see this Satoshi Omura’s paper which used mice http://aac.asm.org/content/15/3/361.full.pdf and http://aac.asm.org/content/15/3/372.full.pdf for more details.
Artemisin was tested on monkey and mouse models of malaria, see http://www.tm.mahidol.ac.th/seameo/2004/35_2/02-3334.pdf for more.