2019 Wolf Prize Laureates were announced yesterday 16.1.19 at an event attended by Israel’s President and Education Minister
Among this year’s Laureates: the scientist who discovered the hormone responsible for regulating body weight and obesity and famous architect Moshe Safdie
At an event attended by Israel’s President, Mr. Reuven (Rubi) Rivlin, the Minister of Education and chairman of the Wolf Foundation Naftali Bennet, Prof. Dan Shechtman, acting chairman of the Wolf Foundation Board and a former Wolf Prize Laureate, and Reut Inon Berman, director general of the Wolf Foundation, the laureates of the Wolf Prize for 2019 were announced today. The five prizes, $100 thousand per category ($ 0.5 million in total) will be divided this year between seven laureates from three countries: USA, France and Israel. The prize will be awarded to the laureates by Israel’s President and the Wolf Foundation chairman and Minister of Education at the end of May in an official ceremony at the Knesset Building in Jerusalem.
The Wolf Prize for Medicine is awarded to Prof. Jeffrey Friedman from Rockefeller University, for the identification of Leptin, the hormone responsible for regulating body weight and obesity. Mutations of the Leptin hormone or its receptor trigger excessive obesity in mammals and leptin treatment is effective in treating obesity in patients who lack the hormone. Little was known about the biological systems that regulate body weight before Friedman’s research and many have even questioned the existence of such systems.
The Wolf Prize for Architecture is awarded to Moshe Safdie, a world renowned architect who came into the limelight as a young architect with his trailblazing Habitat 67 Project in Montreal. Since the beginning of his career in the 1970’s, Safdie left a unique mark with works across the globe. Some of his most notable projects in Israel include the Yad VaShem Museum, Terminal 3 at the Ben Gurion International Airport, the city of Modiin, the Yitzchak Rabin Center in Tel Aviv, the Mamilla Compound and the David Citadel Hotel in Jerusalem, and more.
The Wolf Prize for agriculture is awarded to Prof. David Zilberman from University of California at Berkeley, for developing economic models that address fundamental issues in agriculture, economics and policymaking. Zilberman, who was born in Jerusalem, has built his career around the economics of agriculture, environment, technology and the risks they involve. He seeks to leverage economic theories to solve global problems in developed and developing nations alike.
The Wolf Prize for Chemistry is awarded to prof. Stephen L. Buchwald from MIT and to Prof. John F. Hartwig from University of California at Berkeley, for the development of efficient transition-metal catalysts that have revolutionized drug manufacturing, leading to a breakthrough in molecule and synthetics design.
The Wolf Prize for Mathematics is awarded to Prof. Gregory Lawler from Chicago University, for his comprehensive and pioneering research on erased loops and random walks and to Prof. Jean Francois le Gall from Paris Sud Orsay University, for his profound and elegant works on stochastic processes. The work undertaken by these two mathematicians on random processes and probability, which have been recognized by multiple prizes, became the stepping stone for many consequent breakthroughs.
The laureates are expected to arrive in Israel for the Prize Awarding Ceremony as well as for a series of related events that will be held at the end of May 2019.