The Implications of the Discoveries

  The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2001    

The basic discoveries made by this year’s Laureates will have broad applications within many fields of biology and medicine. The discoveries are important in understanding how chromosomal instability develops in cancer cells, i.e. how parts of chromosomes are rearranged, lost or distributed unequally between daughter cells (figure to the left). The findings in the cell cycle field are about to be applied to tumour diagnostics, and the discoveries may in a long term perspective open new possibilities for cancer therapy.

Chromosomal instability in cancer cells may be the result of defective cell cycle control. The figure shows three pairs of chromosomes (1, 3 and 14) in normal cells (left), compared with the same pairs in cancer cells (right). In cancer cells, the chromosome number may be altered (aneuploidy) and parts of chromosomes may be rearranged (visualized by different colours).

| The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2001 | Introduction | Leland HartwellPaul Nurse |
Tim Hunt
| The Implications of the Discoveries |
Play the “Control of the Cell Cycle” game! 
Based on materials from the 2001 Nobel Poster for Physiology or Medicine
Nobel Poster from the Nobel Committee for Physiology or Medicine, web adapted by Nobel Web

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