Alter, Harvey James

Alter, Harvey James, 1935–, American virologist, b. New York City, M.D. Univ. of Rochester, 1960. He has been a researcher at the National Institutes of Health since 1969. The 2020 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2020 was awarded jointly to Alter, Michael Houghton, and Charles Rice for the discovery of the virus that causes hepatitis C. In the 1970s, Alter led a team of scientists who discovered that most cases of post-transfusion hepatitis could not be linked to the known type A or B viruses, which indicated the existence of an as-yet undescribed pathogen. Collectively, the work of the three scientists led to the treatment and control of the spread of hepatitis C, a significant global health problem.

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