Nobel Prize Inspiration Initiative
Aaron Ciechanover is a distinguished University Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, Israel. He received his MSc (1971) and MD (1973) from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and his PhD from the Technion (1982). There, as a graduate student with Dr Hershko and in collaboration with Dr Rose from Philadelphia, they discovered that tagging of protein substrates with ubiquitin targets them for proteasomal degradation.
It has since become clear that ubiquitin-mediated proteolysis plays major roles in numerous cellular processes, and aberrations in the system underlie the pathogenetic mechanisms of many diseases, including certain malignancies and neurodegenerative disorders. Consequently, the system has become an important platform for drug development. Among the prizes he received are the 2000 Albert Lasker Award, the 2003 Israel Prize and the 2004 Nobel Prize in Chemistry (shared with with Drs Hershko and Rose).