STOCKHOLM (AP) — Two scientists have won the Nobel Prize in medicine for their discoveries into how the human body perceives temperature and touch.
The revelations could lead to new ways of treating pain or even heart disease.
Americans David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian separately identified receptors in the skin that respond to heat and pressure. Researchers are working on drugs to target them.
But the breakthroughs happened decades ago and have not yet yielded many effective new treatments for pain.
The Nobel Committee announced the winners Monday.
Julius used capsaicin, the active component in chili peppers, to help pinpoint the nerve sensors that respond to heat.
Patapoutian found pressure-sensitive sensors in cells that respond to mechanical stimulation.