Top scientists were honoured at a star-studded ceremony in San Francisco on Sunday (8 November) evening. The Breakthrough Prize Organization awarded $21.9m (£15m) to the best life scientists, physicists and mathematicians, as well as one outstanding high school student.

"When I became a scientist, nothing in my life had prepared me for the intense thrill of those experiments that reveal something new, that they're a start of a scientific story so rewarding to tell," said Helen Hobbs, one of the recipients for the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences.

The ceremony, in its third year, was held at Nasa's Ames Research Center in San Francisco, California. The Oscar-style ceremony boasted several Hollywood celebrities and entertainers. Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane was master of ceremonies for the event.

"It is thrilling I have to say to be here in the same room with some of the smartest people in the world or as Donald Trump calls you, 'Egghead idiots,'" said MacFarlane.

Actors Russell Crowe and Hillary Swank were award presenters at the ceremony and there was a live performance by singer Pharrell Williams. The Breakthrough Prizes were founded by Sergey Brin and Anne Wojcicki, Jack Ma and Cathy Zhang, Yuri and Julia Milner, and Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan.