43rd Edition of King Faisal Prize Winners Announced in Prize’s 5 Branches
Under the patronage of His Royal Highness Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, Adviser to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, Governor of Makkah Al-Mukarramah region and Chairman of the King Faisal Prize Authority, the award winner were announced today, with their names declared in the prize’s 43rd session in its five branches.
The Secretary-General of the King Faisal International Prize, Dr.Abdulaziz Al-Sabeel, stated that the selection committees for the King Faisal Prize, with its five branches (Service to Islam, Islamic Studies, Arabic Language and Literature, Medicine, and Science), held a series of sessions to deliberate, and were informed of the nominated works and the arbitrators’ reports.
The committees decided to award the King Faisal Prize for the Service of Islam to the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Sakhr Company for Computer Programs, Muhammad bin Abdul Rahman Al-Sharekh from the state of Kuwait, Al-Sabeel indicated.
He granted the award to Al-Sharekh for several reasons, including: his production of the first computer program for the Holy Quran, the nine books of Hadith in English, and the update of the Islamic Information Archive that includes the Holy Qur’an, the Encyclopedia of Noble Hadith, the Encyclopedia of Islamic Jurisprudence, programs, and other Islamic information databases.
On the other hand, he pointed out that the committee decided to withhold the King Faisal Prize for Islamic Studies and its subject “Endowment in Islam” for this year, due to the failure of the nominated works to meet the award criteria.
In the course of the King Faisal Prize for Arabic Language and Literature entitled “The New Rhetoric,” the committee decided to endow the award for this year to Dr. Mohamed Mishbal, a Moroccan professor at the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of Abdelmalek Saadi in Tetouan.
Mishbal was granted the award for the following reasons: he is the owner of a scientific project. Most of his works are on the subject of “New Rhetoric,” which is characterized by depth, novelty and originality, combining both theory and practice. He seeks to link rhetorical research with the fields of literature, language and communication, and the theoretical and procedural foundation of the beginnings of modern Arab rhetorical discourse, according to an expanded vision that rises to the call for renewal.
In the course of the King Faisal Prize for Medicine and its topic “Regenerative Medicine in Neurological Cases,” the committee decided to give the award for this year jointly to: Prof. Dr. Stephen Mark Stretmater, an American national, Professor of Neurology and Director of the Alzheimer Research Center at Yale University of America, and Prof. Dr. Robin James Franklin, British national, Professor of Neuroscience and Director of the Myelin Therapy Center at Cambridge University, UK.
Prof. Dr. Stephen Mark Stretmater received the award for many reasons, including: his outstanding contributions to understanding the causes of axon growth failure and limited recovery after spinal cord injuries. This scientific contribution had a major impact on the possibility of restoring the growth of the axon, as he determined the role of the gene transcription inhibitor protein (RW). Prof. Dr. Stretmater translated these discoveries to develop new therapeutic approaches and to regenerate the central nervous system in adult mammals.
Prof. Dr. Robin James Franklin received the award for these purposes: his pioneering and fundamental contributions to the biology of the myelin sheath remodeling, as he identified the main causes of stem cells in the adult central nervous system to form oligodendrocytes .Thus creating a scientific basis for clinical studies to regenerate myelin.
In the course of the King Faisal Prize for Science and the subject of “Physics”, the committee decided to award this year’s award to Prof. Dr. Stuart Stephen Barkin, a British professor, professor of experimental physics at Martin Luther Hall-Wittenberg, Director of the Max Planck Institute for Microphysics in Germany. He was granted the award for: his basic discoveries and innovations represented in enabling storage devices with rotational geometry that led to an increase in the storage capacity of magnetic drives by 1,000 times.
Barkin developed practical techniques based on rotary valves that enabled human access to data and led to the “big data revolution”, This has made it possible to solve intractable problems that depend on rapid access to vast amounts of data through machine learning and artificial intelligence, including predictions of the impact of climate change, as well as the discovery of the non-volatile magnetic random access memory (MRAM), which has been made available for recent use.