Three British scientists win 2016 Brain Prize

Comments (0)

Three British scientists have won the prestigious 2016 The Grete Lundbeck European Brain Research Prize, also known as The Brain Prize for discovering the secrets of how memories are formed in the brain. This is the first time the Brain Prize has been won by an entirely UK team.

Winners of 2016 Brain Prize :

Timothy Bliss : Timothy Vivian Pelham Bliss born on 27 July 1940  is a British neuroscientis. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 1994. He is a visiting worker at the Crick Institute in London.  

♦ Graham Collingridge : Graham  is a British neuroscientist and professor at the University of Toronto and at the University of Bristol. He was elected as the Fellow of  Royal Society in 2001.

♦ Richard Morris : He is a professor of neuroscience at the University of Edinburgh. He is known for developing the Morris water navigation task, ne of the currently most-widely used rodent-learning tests, and for his work on the function of the hippocampus.

About the research work

⇒ "Memories change the brain - the brain is plastic" . Those changes occur at the junctions between nerve cells - synapses. The scientists recorded brain cells in anaesthetised rabbits and found that repeatedly stimulating two connected neurons caused their connection to get stronger. 

⇒ The human brain consists of roughly 100 billion neurons (nerve cells), each with about 5,000 synapses, adding up to a total of something like 500 trillion synapses per brain.

⇒ Their research shows how neurons in the hippocampus collaborate and provide a basis for understanding how humans remember. Hippocampus is located deep in the centre of the brain. It is the brain’s learning portal that enables us to store information. 

Grete Lundbeck European Brain Research Prize

► The Brain Prize, is an international scientific award that honours scientists who have distinguished themselves by an outstanding contribution to European neuroscience and who are still active in research.

► It is awarded by the Grete Lundbeck European Brain Research Foundation, based in Copenhagen. It is largest prize for neuroscience in the world and regarded as 'Nobel Prize of neuroscience'. The prize carries  monetary award of 1 million Euros.

► The winners of the prize are selected by a committee of eight neuroscientists that makes the decision. It is awarded to scientist of any nationality although, research for which they are nominated must be carried in Europe or in collaboration with European researchers.

Practice Questions