An Indian-Australian scientist has been awarded the prestigious "Top Invention Prize" for 2006 for his work on stem cell research.
Kuldip Sidhu, an Associate Professor at University of New South Wales, was acknowledged for the work on the derivation of a new human embryonic stem cell line, Endeavour-1, and the cloning technique, according to a statement released by University.
Both innovations are now protected by international patents (IPs), it said.
"We will endeavour to take these IPs to the next level - commercialisation - with the primary aim of better care for patients," Sidhu said in the statement.
The prize is awarded by BioMed North Limited, a not-for-profit agency for the management and commercialisation of intellectual property generated within the state of New South Wales.
Sidhu has produced a human embryonic stem cell line without the use of any animal product. The breakthrough eliminates the risk of animal-to-human contamination in potential stem cell therapy treatments.
"These lines could eventually lead to safer treatments for conditions such as diabetes, Parkinson's disease, spinal cord injury and even breast cancer," Sidhu claimed.
"This cloning of cells involves a new technique, which is a very accurate way of extracting and then growing a single cell," Sidhu, who is leading the research and is based at the Diabetes Transplant Unit at the Prince of Wales Hospital,said.
Hailing from Moga in Ferozepur district of Punjab, Sidhu completed his doctorate from Punjab Agricultural University in Ludhiana and did his post-doctoral work in reproductive physiology at Washington University.