Dubai: The Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Prize for Medical Sciences for 2021-2022, worth a total of 2.8 million dirhams, was awarded on Wednesday evening to international vaccine pioneers and other stalwarts of medicine in Dubai.
Supreme Chairman of the Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation for Distinguished Academic Performance and Patron of the Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Prize for Medical Sciences, Sheikh Rashid bin Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, paid tribute to the 14 winners of the 12th term of the prize medical .
The ceremony was held at the Museum of the Future in the presence of sheikhs, ministers and officials from the UAE’s health sector.
Tribute to Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid
In his welcome speech, Abdul Rahman Al Owais, Minister of Health and Prevention and Chairman of the Board of Hamdan Medical Award, said the ceremony this term greatly missed the presence of its founder, the late Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
He paid tribute to the big heart and generosity of the late Sheikh Hamdan, who were inspiring role models for the nation. “He formed a unique example in his dedication to improving the lives of millions of people as well as in his appreciation of the importance of science and knowledge. His belief in achieving and enjoying excellence had the greater impact by inspiring new generations to pursue progress, keeping its legacy and impact alive,” the Minister added.
A video on late Sheikh Hamdan’s contributions in various fields was also screened to pay tribute.
Focus on infectious diseases
The theme of this term of the Prize was the theme of infectious diseases.
“‘Infectious Diseases’ has been chosen to be the subject of this award’s mandate as a contribution to efforts to support the health sector and improve its preparedness in line with the UAE’s vision and goals for sector,” the minister said.
He stressed that the UAE attaches great importance to its people and their health. “The health sector will therefore remain at the forefront of the country’s priorities and an important part of the UAE’s development vision.”
Congratulating the winners, he commended their efforts to support medical science and develop avenues of research, so as to help improve the quality and well-being of life.
A video retracing the works of the winners was also shown.
Sheikh Rashid bin Hamdan honored the winners by presenting them with their trophies.
The Grand Hamdan International Award was given to the co-developers of the HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) vaccine.
Professor Ian Hector Frazer of the University of Queensland Medical School, and Founding CEO and Research Director of the Institute for Translational Research, and the late Dr Jian Zhou, Lion Principal Investigator and Chair of HPV Structure Protein Laboratory at the Center for Immunology and Cancer Research at the University of Queensland Medical School, represented by his son, received their awards.
Excellence in medical research
There were also two winners of the Hamdan Award for Excellence in Medical Research. On the topic of prevention, the winner was Professor F. Marc LaForce, Clinical Professor of Medicine at NYU Langone School of Medicine and Director of the Meningitis Vaccine Project, in recognition of his role in providing a vaccine against the meningococcal bacteria that cause meningitis. to sub-Saharan Africa.
The second winner in this category, on the subject of immunity, was Professor Dr. David Ho, Clyde ’56 and Helen Wu Professor of Medicine at Columbia University and Founding Scientific Director of the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center. Professor Ho has been recognized for his studies aimed at unraveling the dynamic nature of HIV replication in vivo and revolutionizing the basic understanding of this horrific disease.
Volunteers in humanitarian medical services
Sheikh Rashid bin Hamdan also honored the winners of the Hamdan Award for Volunteers in Humanitarian Medical Services. They were Professor William M. Novick, who founded the International Children’s Heart Foundation, based in Memphis, and the Al Basar International Foundation, KSA.
As Professor William’s foundation works to make heart surgeries accessible to those who don’t have access to them or can’t afford them in 30 countries in resource-limited settings, the A Basar Foundation provides its services through “eye camps” in 45 countries.
In the category of Arab World Awards, the winner of the Hamdan Award for Best College, Institute or Center of Medicine in the Arab World was King Abdulaziz University College of Medicine, Saudi Arabia. The Hamdan Prize for Eminent Personalities of the Arab World was awarded to Professor Fowzan Alkuraya, an authority in the field of Mendelian genetics.
At the UAE Awards, the Genetics Department of Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital won the Hamdan Award for Outstanding Clinical Department in the Public Sector.
Sheikh Rashid also honored four personalities as winners of the Hamdan Prize to honor people working in the field of medicine and health. These included Dr. Wael Al Mahmeed, a staff physician at the Cardiac, Vascular and Chest Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Abu Dhabi, who established a research grant called “MBRU – AlMahmeed Collaborative Research Award”; and Dr. Nawal Al Kaabi, Chairman of the National COVID-19 Clinical Committee, and the late pioneers Dr. Ahmed Kazem and Dr. Muawiya Al Shannar who were honored posthumously.
Original research paper
The Hamdan Prize for an Original Research Paper published in the Hamdan Medical Journal was awarded for the paper entitled “Identification of a Novel OXCT1 Frameshift Mutation by WholeExome Sequencing and Evidence for NonsenseMediated mRNA Decay”.
Authors Abdullah Al Mutery, Zamzam Yousef, Mona Mahfood, Abdelaziz Tlili, Jihen Chouchen, University of Sharjah received the award.