CLOSE

Thomas Perlmann, far right, Secretary of the Nobel Assembly announces the 2020 Nobel laureates in Physiology or Medicine during a news conference at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, Monday Oct. 5, 2020. (Photo: Claudio Bresciani, AP)

STOCKHOLM — Americans Harvey J. Alter and Charles M. Rice, and British scientist Michael Houghton were awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine or Physiology on Monday for the discovery of the hepatitis C virus.

Announcing the prize in Stockholm on Monday, the Nobel Committee noted that the trio’s work helped explain a major source of blood-borne hepatitis that couldn’t be explained by the hepatitis A and B viruses. Their work make possible blood tests and new medicines that have saved millions of lives, the committee said.

“Thanks to their discovery, highly sensitive blood tests for the virus are now