Prize Recipient

Ada Yonath
Weizmann Institute


Ada Yonath focuses on genetic code translation by ribosomes, on antibiotics paralyzing this process, on designing novel antibiotics for fighting resistance, on human ribosomal diseases and on the origin of life. She graduated from Hebrew University, earned PhD from Weizmann Institute (WIS) and completed postdoctoral studies at CMU and MIT, USA. In 1971 she became a WIS faculty member and established the first biological-crystallography laboratory in Israel, which was the only lab of this kind in the country for almost a decade. In 1978-9 she spent a Sabbatical in Chicago U, and during 1980-2004 she headed the Max-Planck-Research-Unit in DESY, Hamburg, in parallel to her activity at WIS. Since 1989 she is the Director of Kimmelman Center for Biomolecular Structures at WIS. Among others, she is a member of the Israel Academy of Sciences & Humanities; the US National Academy of Sciences; the German Academy for Sciences Leopoldina; the Royal Society (UK), the European Molecular Biology Organization; the Pontifical Academy of Sciences of the Vatican; the Korean Academy; the Royal European Academy and Academia Nazionale dei Lincei, Rome. She holds honorary doctorates from almost all universities in Israel and from over 40 universities in USA, Latin America, Europe, UK and the Far East. Her awards include the Israel Prize; Linus Pauling Gold Medal; the Albert Einstein World Award for Excellence; UNESCO-L'Oréal Award; the WOLF Prize; the Golden DESY Pin; the Paul Ehrlich Medal; the Erice Peace Prize; the Israel Prime Minister EMET award; the Louisa Gross Horwitz Prize; the Maria Sklodowska-Curie Medal; the Massry Award and Medal; the Paul Karrer Gold Medal; the Anfinsen Prize; the Harvey Prize; the Cotton medal and the 2009 NOBEL Prize for Chemistry.