Who stands a chance of winning the 2015 Nobel Prize?

Who stands a chance of winning the 2015 Nobel Prize?

This is the most titillating time of the year! As the date of the Nobel Prize announcements is drawing closer, speculations are rife about who is likely to win the title of Nobel Laureate in physics, chemistry, medicine or physiology, and economics.

It has been noted that some of the winners of the Lasker Awards and the Wolf Prize have gone on to win the Nobel Prize in the past. Hence, many in the scholarly circle believe that these winners stand a chance of becoming Nobel Laureates. Another source of predictions for Nobel winners is the Thomson Reuters’ list of Citation Laureates.

Thomson Reuters released its annual list of researchers called Thomson Reuters Citation Laureates on September 24. The researchers who make it to this list are those “whose work has achieved quantifiable esteem and influence in the scientific community, at a level far beyond the norm” and “signals that they are ‘of Nobel class’ and likely to earn the Nobel someday.” Reportedly, since it began in 2002, the Thomson Reuters forecast has picked 37 researchers who have gone on to win, albeit not necessarily in the year in which the list was released.

The Thomson Reuters Citation Laureates list includes the following researchers:

Chemistry

  • Carolyn R. Bertozzi

For founding the field of bioorthogonal chemistry, which enables observation of biochemical reactions in living systems without altering them, affording novel insights into cellular processes associated with many conditions, including cancer   

  • Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna

For developing the CRISPR/CAS-9 method for genome editing, a “find and replace” utility which helps identify potential drug targets and may even be used to treat specific genetic diseases in humans

  • John B. Goodenough and M. Stanley Whittingham

For laying the scientific foundation for the development of the ubiquitous lithium-ion battery, which powers cell phones, tablets, and other portable consumer electronics, as well as implantable medical devices such as cardiac pacemakers

Medicine

  • Jeffrey I. Gordon

For exposing the elaborate relationship inbetween humans and intestinal microbiota and how this interaction affects nutrition, obesity, and overall health

  • Kazutoshi Mori and Peter Walter

For elucidating the “unfolded protein response,” a cellular “quality-control” system whose workings have provided insights into many diseases and possible treatments

  • Alexander Y. Rudensky, Shimon Sakaguchi, and Ethan M. Shevach

For advances in the understanding of T cells and their function in autoimmune diseases, allergy, inflammation, and other processes

Physics

  • Paul B. Corkum and Ferenc Krausz

For pioneering the field of attophysics, which uses lasers to detect molecular phenomenon taking place in a quintillionth of a 2nd, with potential applications in engineering and medicine

  • Deborah S. Jin

For creating the very first fermionic condensate at ultra-low temperatures, work that might be harnessed in precision measurement, quantum computing, and superconductors

  • Zhong Lin Wang

For inventing power-generating nano-systems that convert mechanical energy into violet wand to power sensors and other little devices; applications include clothing that converts physical movement into energy

Economics

  • Master Richard Blundell

For advancing, through virtuoso empirical microeconometric studies, our understanding of policy decisions impacting labor markets and consumer request, and in particular, how families are affected by adverse economic conditions

  • John A. List

For extending the application of field experiments in economics, opening a fresh understanding over a range of subjects by designing, for example, experiments to gauge whether subjects’ behavior in natural settings is consistent with economic theory

  • Charles F. Manski

For explaining the range and thresholds of social policy decisions and prediction subject to partial skill and social effects—examining how people choose inbetween alternatives when only one outcome will ever be known; for example, in criminal sentencing and medical treatment

All the best to all of the researchers!

The Nobel Prize announcements will begin on October Five. See this space to know who won the prestigious prizes. 

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