WASHINGTON – A U.S. foundation sponsored by top U.S. business executives said Wednesday it has selected 11 researchers, including Japanese stem cell researcher and Nobel laureate Shinya Yamanaka, as inaugural winners of the newly launched Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences for their past achievements in the field of life sciences.
The winners will each receive a $3 million cash prize, more than double that of the Nobel Prize. The new prize is aimed at providing the recipients with more opportunities to pursue greater future accomplishments, the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences Foundation said.
The 11 winners agreed to serve on the selection committee of the foundation to choose recipients of future prizes, it said, adding that anyone will be able to nominate a candidate online for consideration for future prizes to ensure transparency in the selection process.
Apple Inc. Chairman Arthur Levinson chairs the foundation, while Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer of Facebook Inc., is among the founding sponsors.
The 10 other recipients are Cornelia Bargmann of Rockefeller University, David Botstein of Princeton University, Lewis Cantley of Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, Hans Clevers of Hubrecht Institute of the Netherlands, Titia de Lange of Rockefeller University, Napoleone Ferrara of University of California, San Diego, Eric Lander of Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Charles Sawyers of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, Bert Vogelstein of Johns Hopkins University and Robert Weinberg of MIT.