Home / News / World /  Engineer gets 2022 Lasker Award for building COVID-19 world tracker

The 2022 Lasker Award for public service was given to an engineer from Johns Hopkins University for building a website to monitor COVID-19 cases around the world. The Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation has announced $250,000 in awards to honour breakthroughs in medical research.

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The public service honour went to Lauren Gardner, an engineer who studies the spread of diseases. Her lab team developed the COVID-19 tracker when the coronavirus began to spread internationally in January 2020. The dashboard evolved into a useful tool that today tracks cases, deaths, immunizations, and other things on a global scale. The team has always made the tracker accessible to the public.

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According to a press release from the Lasker Foundation, the dashboard set "a new standard for public health data science" and assisted in guiding both private decisions and public policy.

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Yuk Ming Dennis Lo, a molecular biologist at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, received the award for medical research for developing a prenatal blood test that can screen for Down syndrome and other genetic disorders. Lo discovered that the mother's blood included foetal DNA, enabling genetic screening to be performed by blood test rather than a more invasive operation.

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Three researchers—Richard O. Hynes of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Erkki Ruoslahti of the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute in California, and Timothy A. Springer of the Harvard Medical School—shared the fundamental research prize. They were honoured for their work on important immunity proteins known as integrins, which assist cells in adhering to molecules and other adjacent cells. Their research assisted in the establishment of the discipline of integrin study, which later produced fresh approaches to the management of disease.

(With AP inputs)


Sounak Mukhopadhyay

Sounak Mukhopadhyay, who also goes by the name Sounak Mukherjee, has been producing digital news since 2012. He's worked for the International Business Times, The Inquisitr, and Moneycontrol in the past. He's also contributed to Free Press Journal and TheRichest with feature articles. He covers news for a wide range of subjects including business, finance, economy, politics and social media. Before working with digital news publications, he worked as a freelance content writer.
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