The scientists who discovered HIV will share the Nobel prize for medicine with the expert who linked human papillpoma virus (HPV) to cervical cancer.

Frenchmen Fran?oise Barr?-Sinoussi and Luc Montagnier were recognised for their groundbreaking work in uncovering the virus responsible for Aids.

Harald zur Hausen, of Germany, received the prize for making the link between the HPV and cervical cancer.
He received half of the prize with the Frenchmen splitting the other half.

In its citation, the Nobel Assembly said Barre-Sinoussi and Montagnier's discovery was vital in enabling scientists to begin to understand the biology of a virus which has killed millions of people worldwide.

More than 25 million people have died of HIV/AIDS since 1981.

Globally, over 40 million people are living with HIV.
The pair's work in the early 1980s made it possible to clone the HIV-1 genome.

"This has allowed identification of important details in its replication cycle and how the virus interacts with its host," the citation said.

"Furthermore, it led to development of methods to diagnose infected patients and to screen blood."

The assembly said zur Hausen "went against current dogma" to discover that HPV caused cervical cancer - the second most common cancer among women.


About 3,000 UK women are diagnosed with this type of cancer every year UK.
The discovery of the link between HPV and cervical cancer has led to the development of vaccines to immunise young girls against HPV.

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