Born: 14 March 1854, Strehlen (now Strzelin), Prussia (now Poland)
Died: 20 August 1915, Bad Homburg vor der Höhe, Germany
Affiliation at the time of the award: Goettingen University, Göttingen, Germany, Königliches Institut für experimentelle Therapie (Royal Institute for Experimental Therapy), Frankfurt-on-the-Main, Germany
Prize motivation: "in recognition of their work on immunity"
Prize share: 1/2
Our immune system protects us from attacks by microorganisms. As part of its defenses, the immune system forms antibodies in the blood that neutralize poisons, or toxins, that are formed by bacteria. One of Paul Ehrlich's contributions to immunology was the transfer of blood serum with antibodies to treat and counteract diphtheria, which he carried out with Emil von Behring. Paul Ehrlich speculated that cells have a kind of receptor that binds to the harmful substances. The receiving elements are knocked off of the cell and become antibodies.
"for his work on serum therapy, especially its application against diphtheria, by which he has opened a new road in the domain of medical science and thereby placed in the hands of the physician a victorious weapon against illness and deaths"
"for their discoveries concerning the specificity of the cell mediated immune defence"
"in recognition of his work on anaphylaxis"