Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine 2020 has been jointly awarded to Harvey J Alter, Michael Houghton and Charles M Rice for their discovery of the Hepatitis C Virus.
Their contribution has helped fight against blood borne hepatitis which is a major global health problem causing cirrhosis and liver cancer in many people around the world.
It was the discovery of the hepatitis C virus which revealed the cause of various unexplained cases of hepatitis and their discovery also made possible blood test for the easy detection of the Hepatitis C virus and the development of new medicines for the cure of the Hepatitis C virus.
There are two main forms of hepatitis, one form is an acute disease which is caused by the Hepatitis A virus. Hepatitis A virus is transmitted by contaminated food and water.
Hepatitis B virus and hepatitis C virus are blood borne diseases and caused by blood transmission and are often a chronic disease that can progress to cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma.