4th Edition of the Sanofi - Institut Pasteur Awards

Press release

Sanofi and the Institut Pasteur have attributed today the Sanofi - Institut Pasteur Awards for the fourth year in a row. Four major researchers with international recognition have been rewarded for their works in two major fields for global health: tropical and neglected diseases and immunology.

logo Prix Sanofi - Institut Pasteur 2015


  • Doctor Marco Vignuzzi - laureate in the Junior category - Viral Populations and Pathogenesis Research Unit, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France, and CNRS researcher, for his works on viral mutations presenting a short-term epidemic potential.
  • Doctor Mohamed-Ali Hakimi - laureate in the Junior category - Host-Pathogen Interactions & Immunity to Infections, Institut Albert Bonniot, Université Grenoble Alpes, France, Inserm - CNRS, for his researches on the functioning of the parasite Toxoplasma gondii responsible for toxoplasmosis.
  • Professor Keith Matthews - laureate in the Mid-career category - Center for Immunity, Infection and Evolution, School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom, for his researches on the parasite Trypanosoma brucei responsible for sleeping sickness.
  • Professor Emil Unanue - laureate in the Senior category - Department of Pathology and Immunology, Washington University School of Medicine, Saint Louis, USA, for his work on the recognition of proteins by the immune system, paving the way to the research of therapies against autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis or rheumatoid polyarthritis.

Created in 2012, the Sanofi – Institut Pasteur Awards are the result of a historical and privileged collaboration between two partners, Sanofi and the Institut Pasteur, to encourage and support scientific excellence and innovation in the service of global health. They are the first international scientific prizes to honor researchers, recognized both by an international academic research center and a leader in the pharmaceutical industry. The overall allocation of the Prizes amount to 300,000 euros.

The laureates received their Awards at the occasion of a ceremony on November 4th at the Institut Pasteur (Paris) in the presence of Christian Bréchot, President of the Institut Pasteur, and Olivier Brandicourt, Chief Executive Officer, Sanofi, and the jury members.

The Sanofi - Institut Pasteur Awards are today among the most prestigious international scientific prizes with the strongest allocation” declared Christian Bréchot. “We are proud to welcome the new promotion of the laureates of the Sanofi - Institut Pasteur Awards whose contributions enable to make concrete progress in the field of life sciences.

The Sanofi - Institut Pasteur Awards show our long-term commitment to scientific progress” said Olivier Brandicourt. “The therapeutic areas in which the researchers were attributed today the Sanofi - Institut Pasteur Awards remind us that a lot still needs to be accomplished in the field of global health.”


The jury awarding the Prizes is independent and composed of 11 distinguished members in the research community:

Pr. Peter C. Agre, Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2003, University Professor and Director of the Paludism, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA.
Pr. Elizabeth H. Blackburn, Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2009, Professor of Biology and Physiology in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of California, San Francisco, USA.
Pr. Pascale Cossart, Member of the French Academy of Sciences, Head of Bacteria-Cell Interactions Research Unit, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.
Pr. Catherine Dulac, Member of the French Academy of Sciences, Higgins Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, USA.
Pr. Alain Fischer, Director of the Pediatric Immunology Unit (Inserm), Hôpital Necker-Enfants malades, Professor at the Paris Descartes University, Paris, France.
Pr. Jörg Hinrich Hacker, President of the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, Halle, Germany.
Pr. Jules A. Hoffmann, Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2011, Distinguished Class Research Director at CNRS (Emeritus), Invited Professor at Strasbourg University, France.
Dr. Gary J. Nabel, Chief Scientific Officer, Global R&D Sanofi, Cambridge, USA.
Pr. Staffan Normark, Professor of Medical Microbiology, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden, Member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Sweden.
Pr. Jeffrey V. Ravetch, Professor and Head of the Leonard Wagner Laboratory of Molecular Genetics and Immunology at the Rockefeller University, New-York, USA.
Pr. Philippe Sansonetti, Member of the French Academy of Sciences, Professor at the Collège de France, Head of the Molecular Microbial Pathogenesis Unit, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.



About the Institut Pasteur and the Institut Pasteur International Network

The Institut Pasteur, a private foundation with officially recognized charitable status set up by Louis Pasteur in 1887, is today an internationally renowned center for biomedical research with a network of 33 institutes worldwide. In the pursuit of its mission to prevent and fight against diseases in France and throughout the world, the Institut Pasteur operates in four main areas: scientific and medical research, public health and health monitoring, teaching, and business development and technology transfer.

More than 2,400 people work on its Paris campus. The Institut Pasteur is a globally recognized leader in infectious diseases, microbiology, and immunology. Its 130 units also focus their research on certain cancers, genetic and neurodegenerative diseases, genomics and developmental biology. This research aims to expand our knowledge of living organisms in a bid to lay the foundation for new prevention strategies and novel therapeutics. Since its inception, 10 Institut Pasteur scientists have been awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine, including two in 2008 for the 1983 discovery of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS. www.pasteur.fr/en


About Sanofi

Sanofi, a global healthcare leader, discovers, develops and distributes therapeutic solutions focused on patients’ needs. Sanofi has core strengths in diabetes solutions, human vaccines, innovative drugs, consumer healthcare, emerging markets, animal health and the new Genzyme. Sanofi is listed in Paris (EURONEXT: SAN) and in New York (NYSE: SNY).

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