The trophy includes an ornamental replica of the staff of Aesculapius, the ancient Greek symbol of medicine. The piece shows a golden snake, with diamonds for eyes, entwined around a staff. The trophy was designed and produced by Simons Jewellers.

The Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for Medicine honours pioneering work and research excellence in medical sciences.

Alfred Heineken established the prize in 1989. At that time, he felt that medical researchers were not given the recognition they deserved. Every two years, the prize is awarded to a renowned researcher worldwide who has made groundbreaking discoveries within the field.

Laureates of the Dr H.P. Heineken Prize for Medicine include some of the world’s leading scientists and future Nobel laureates. Among them are Paul Lauterbur, who revolutionized medical research and practice with the invention of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); Elizabeth Blackburn, who made the innovatory discovery of how telomeres protect chromosomes and identified the enzyme that produces their DNA; and Eric Kandel, who bridged the gap between the physiology of behaviour and classical psychology by his pioneering research on the molecular mechanisms underlying learning processes and memory.

All laureates of the prize have contributed to cutting-edge research that has great potential to positively impact people’s lives worldwide, inspire young researchers, and promote knowledge valorisation and effective scientific communication. The prize consists of a freely disposable cash prize of 250,000 USD and a trophy, funded by the Alfred Heineken Fondsen Foundation.

With great care, the board of the Foundation has decided not to award the Dr. A.H. Heineken Prize for Medicine in 2024. In line with the legacy of the awards, the prize will be presented again in 2026. For more information, please visit our news page