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Academia Sinica E-news No.146
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Academia Sinica Lecture Series Commences with Nobel Laureate Dr. Roger Yonchien Tsien
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Academia Sinica Lecture Series Commences with Nobel Laureate Dr. Roger Yonchien Tsien

Dr. Roger Yonchien Tsien, a 2008 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry, will deliver two keynote speeches at Academia Sinica and National Taiwan University on December 11 and 14, respectively. The lectures are entitled "Painting cell signals with a palette of fluorescent proteins" and "Building molecules to image and help treat cancer and inflammatory disease" and will mark the inauguration of the Academia Sinica Lecture series.

The Academia Sinica Lecture series is organized by President Chi-Huey Wong in an effort to build on the spirit of research and free exchange of scholarly knowledge fostered at the Academy Presidents’ Forum held on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the establishment of Academia Sinica last year. Invitations to speak as an Academia Sinica Lecturer will be extended to top scholars from around the world and represents the most prestigious lecture at Academia Sinica. 

Dr. Tsien, presently a professor of the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department at the University of California, San Diego, was awarded the Nobel Prize with two other chemists, Martin Chalfie of Columbia University and Osamu Shimomura of Boston University, in recognition of their discovery richard mille and development of the green fluorescent protein (GFP). GFP is commonly used in biology as a reporter of gene expression. Among the co-winners, Dr. Tsien made unprecedented contributions to the general understanding of how GFP fluoresces, and "extended the color palette beyond green allowing researchers to give various proteins and cells different colors."

The discovery of GFP has led to its widespread use as a tagging tool in bioscience research. By using DNA technology, researchers can now use GFP as a fluorescent marker to help better observe the movements, positions and interactions of tagged proteins.

Dr. Tsien comes from a line of top academics. Dr. Tsien's uncle Dr. Hsue-Shen Tsien was a renowned rocket scientist regarded as the founding father of Chinese ballistic missile. Dr. Tsien's father, Hsue-Chu Tsien, was a mechanical engineer who graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. Tsien graduated from Harvard University with a Bachelor of Science in chemistry and physics in 1972. He received his PhD degree in physiology from the University of Cambridge in 1977.

From 1982 to 1989, Dr. Tsien was appointed to the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley. Since 1989 he has been working at the University of California, San Diego where his current research interests are chemical biology on design, synthesis, and application of molecular probes of biological function.

Dr. Tsien has received many awards from around the world, including the United States, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, and Israel. He is also the recipient of a number of honorary positions from a number of top-ranking academies, including the United States Institute of Medicine of 1995, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences of 1998, the National Academy of Sciences of 1998, and the Royal Society UK of 2006.  

Dr. Tsien's first lecture will be moderated by President Chi-Huey Wong, and the second will be chaired by the president of National Taiwan University, Dr. Si-Chen Lee.

Lecture A

Title: Painting cell signals with a palette of fluorescent proteins
Time: 15:30 - 17:00, December 11, 2009 (Friday)
Venue: 1F, Auditorium in the Academic Activity Center of Academia Sinica.
             No.128, Sec.2, Academia Road, Nankang District, Taipei City
Moderator: Dr. Chi-Huey Wong, President, Academia Sinica

Lecture B

Title: Building molecules to image and help treat cancer and inflammatory disease
Time: 10:30 - 12:00, December 14, 2009 (Monday)
Venue: International Conference Hall at Gis NTU Convention Center.
             B1, No.85, Sec. 4, Roosevelt Road, Da'an District, Taipei City
Moderator: Dr. Si-Chen Lee, President, National Taiwan University

Related Websites: http://chem-web.ucsd.edu/research/profile.cfm?cid=C01821
Online Registration: http://iao.sinica.edu.tw/ASL

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