Award winner

2022 Edition

Philippe J. Sansonetti

Professor Sansonetti holds a degree in Biochemistry/Microbiology (University of Paris, 1978); PhD in Biology (Marie Curie University of Paris, 1992); M.D. (University of Paris Descartes, 1995); fellowship from the National Research Council of the United States (1979-1981); and completed his postdoctoral training at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (Washington DC, USA).

Currently, he is a professor at the Institute Pasteur and since 2008, he was elected to the Chair of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases at the Collège de France

He is the author of more than 500 publications in scientific journals and for several years has been editor of numerous professional publications. His prestige in the field of sciences has been recognized with numerous awards, among which stand out Officer of the National Order of the Legion of Honor and Commander of the National Order of Merit, Prix Louis Jeantet of Medicine, Grand Prix de l’INSERM.

He is a member of: EMBO (European Molecular Biology Organisation), French Academy of sciences, Academy of Sciences Deutsche Akademie der Natursforscher, Leopoldina US National Academy of Sciences and Royal Society.

Jury Decision

The jury of the ABARCA PRIZE in its second edition, made up of Professors Juan Luis Arsuaga, Silvia Priori, Jean-Laurent Casanova and Federico de Montalvo, chaired by Professor Alberto Muñoz, agrees to award the ABARCA PRIZE to Professor Philippe J. Sansonetti for his research on shigellosis (commonly known as bacillary dysentery), a diarrheal disease caused by the Shigella bacterium that is responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths annually in developing countries, particularly of children.

His work has been essential for understanding the stages of infection by this bacterium, how it develops and how the body’s immune system reacts to the infection and the bacteria against it, studies that make up his definition of Cellular Microbiology.

Professor Sansonetti has carried out an ambitious study on the pathogenesis of childhood stunting and associated pediatric environmental enteropathy in sub-Saharan Africa. This is the first etiology of malnutrition in infants in low-income areas and responds to the overgrowth of an abnormal microbiota or dysbiosis in the small intestine. This study made it possible to identify the composition of this dysbiosis, elucidate the pathogenesis of the disease and offer biomarkers for early detection, as well as preventive and therapeutic solutions to eliminate growth and psychomotor retardation that are the main consequences of pediatric environmental enteropathy.

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