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Team behind Oxford jab to be honoured at GQ Men of the Year Awards

PIC: John Cairns/University of Oxford

Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert and her colleagues will be given the 'heroes of the year' award tonight.

Professor Gilbert, Professor Catherine Green and the team behind the Oxford vaccine will be named 'heroes of the year' at the 2021 GQ Men of the Year Awards.

The team was recognised on the Queen’s Birthday Honours list, with Prof Gilbert made a dame after helping mastermind the new vaccine and Prof Green awarded an OBE for services to science and public health.

The annual award ceremony, held in association with Boss, will be hosted by actor and musician Idris Elba and his wife Sabrina this evening.

The married couple will jointly host the 24th edition of the awards at an in-person ceremony which will also see Sir Anthony Hopkins receive the legend award.

Speaking ahead of the ceremony, Prof Green told of the “emotional moment” when she received her first dose of the vaccine in April.

She said: “It was an emotional moment for me because I’m there along with other people receiving the AstraZeneca jab. And that meant a lot, because it was the culmination for us of the project that started back in January the year before.”

Dame Sarah, who co-designed the Oxford jab, has had a Barbie doll created in her honour by toy company Mattel and she was among the medical staff and other “inspirational individuals” who were given a standing ovation at this year’s Wimbledon tennis tournament while a guest in the Royal Box.

She told GQ of the moment: “I didn’t know it was going to happen and would rather not have been filmed when it suddenly, unexpectedly did.”

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