University of Dundee

CLS Alumnus Dr. Nicholas Lydon Wins 2012 Japan Prize

26 Jan 2012

The Japan Prize Foundation has announced the laureates of its 2012 Japan Prize, one of the world’s most prestigious awards in science and technology, and one of them is Dr Nick Lydon, an alumnus and honorary graduate of the University of Dundee.

The 2012 Japan Prize for the field of healthcare and medical technology was awarded jointly to Dr Lydon, Dr Janet Rowley, the Blum-Riese Distinguished Service Professor of the University of Chicago, and  Dr Brian Druker, Director of the Knight Cancer Institute at the Oregon Health & Science University, in recognition of their contribution to the development of a new therapeutic drug targeting cancer-specific molecules, called Imatinib.

Dr Lydon is the Founder and Director of Blueprint Medicines in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He received his PhD in biochemistry from the University of Dundee on 1982 and returned to the University last year to receive an honorary degree. Dr Lydon has a further local connection - he was a student at Strathallan High School near Perth. 

Dr Lydon said, “I consider myself extremely blessed in having been able to contribute to a field that has made a difference to cancer patients. I thank you for this great honor, and hope that it will inspire young scientists to work on translating basic discoveries into treatments that have an impact on patient’s lives.”

The 2012 Japan Prize laureates will each receive a certificate of recognition and a commemorative gold medal at an award ceremony during Japan Prize Week in Tokyo on April 25, 2012. A cash award of 50 million Japanese yen (approximately US$650,000) will also be given to each field - this year the three laureates in the healthcare and medical technology field will split the prize equally.


About Japan Prize Foundation

Since its inception in 1985, the Japan Prize Foundation has awarded the Japan Prize to 74 people from 13 countries. In addition to awarding the Japan Prize, which is endorsed by the Japanese government, the Foundation has been hosting "Easy-to-Understand Science and Technology" seminars and awarding research grants to help nurture young scientists and further promote the advancement of science and technology. For additional details about the Japan Prize Foundation and its activities, please visit