Two female scientists awarded Nobel Prize in chemistry

Stockholm Two female scientists have been awarded the 2020 Nobel Prize for Chemistry for the development of a method for genome editing.

Emmanuelle Charpentier, from France, and American Jennifer Doudna on Wednesday became the sixth and seventh women to win a Nobel for chemistry, joining the likes of Marie Curie, who won in 1911, and more recently, Frances Arnold, in 2018.

Emmanuelle Charpentier, pictured in 2015, is one of two receipients of the Nobel Prize in chemistry.Credit:AP

The award comes with a gold medal and a monetary prize of 10 million Swedish krona ($A1.5 million).

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said the scientists"discovered one of gene technology's sharpest tools: the CRISPR/Cas9 genetic scissors".

"This technology has had a revolutionary impact on the life sciences, is contributing to new cancer therapies and may make the dream of curing inherited diseases come true.

"The ability to cut the DNA where you want has revolutionised the life sciences," Pernilla Wittung Stafshede, member of the academy of sciences, said.

Nobel Prize for chemistry winner Jennifer Doudna, pictured in 2015.Credit:AP

The Nobel Committee awarded the prize for physiology and medicine on Monday to Americans Harvey J. Alter and Charles M. Rice and British-born scientist Michael Houghton for discovering the liver-ravaging hepatitis C virus.

Tuesday's prize for physics went to Roger Penrose of Britain, Reinhard Genzel of Germany and Andrea Ghez of the United States for their breakthroughs in understanding the mysteries of cosmic black holes.

The other prizes are for outstanding work in the fields of literature, peace and economics.

AP, Reuters

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