PARIS — The L’Oréal Foundation, in partnership with UNESCO, recognized the achievements of five female scientists during the company’s 14th annual For Women in Science awards, which were held March 29 here.
The five laureates, who each hail from a different geographical region, were chosen in acknowledgement of their achievements and contribution to the scientific process. Each of the laureates, who all work in the field of life sciences, wins an award of $100,000 to support their area of scientific research.
Representing North America, Bonnie Bassler received the prize for her discovery of the chemical communication between bacteria, which could lead to developing new antibiotics. Jill Farrant, representing Africa and the Arab States, was recognized for discovering how plants survive under dry conditions, with the ultimate goal of developing drought-tolerant crops.
Representing Latin America, Susana López received the award for identifying how rotaviruses infect cells, helping to diagnose and treat the viruses. Ingrid Scheffer of Australia represented the Asia-Pacific region, and was acknowledged for her work in identifying the genes involved in some forms of epilepsy. And Frances Ashcroft of Oxford University, who represented Europe, was lauded for her role in advancing the understanding of insulin secretion and of neonatal diabetes.
The laureates were recognized alongside 15 L’Oréal-UNESCO fellows, a group of female scientists at the doctoral and postdoctoral level, who each received $40,000 to pursue their research at an international university.