Professor Barry Marshall and Doctor Robin Warren, the Australian Nobel Prize winners for medicine received their awards from the King of Sweden in a glitzy ceremony at Stockholm yesterday.
The Nobel Committe was unequivocal in praising the team for their belief in their concept. Professor Marshall and Dr Warren were of the opinion that stomach ulcers are caused by bacteria and not by stress or lifestyle changes as previously believed. To prove this point Professor Marshall drank a very potent brew containing the helicobacter pylori bacterium. Subsequently, he became very ill, but proved this point that ulcers are caused by bacteria. Professor Marshall became very famous for offering himself as a guinea pig. However, their discovery means that ulcers can now be easily treated by administering the appropriate antibiotics. "It will teach us a lot for the stomach environment and I think that'll help new drugs and new vaccine developments in the future, so that's our hope," Professor Marshall said, adding that he hoped their effort would open the door for many other breakthroughs in the medical field.
Dr Warren was pleased that their efforts had been recognized on an international basis and said, "The best thing that could come out would be that it would encourage younger people to do the same sort of thing. That would be the best thing, I think, something for the future." Professor Marshall and Dr Warren are now working on a vaccine for the ulcer-causing bacteria.