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Pioneering antibiotics researcher to visit Taiwan

2012/03/02 22:02:45

Taipei, March 2 (CNA) Nobel laureate and pioneering chemist Ada E. Yonath of Israel will visit Taiwan to speak about her studies that have helped develop antibiotics, Taiwan's top research institute said Friday.

At the invitation of Academia Sinica, Yonath will give speeches titled "Is there a Limit to Life Expectancy? Wishes, Predictions and Reality" and "From Basic Research to Advanced Antibiotics," at the institute and at National Taiwan University March 6 and March 7, respectively, the institute said.

Yonath is currently the Kimmel professor of structural biology at the Weizmann Institute of Science and director of the Kimmelman Center for Biomolecular Structure and Assembly in Israel.

In 2009, she won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry along with two other chemists for her studies on the structure and function of the ribosome, becoming the first woman from the Middle East to win a Nobel prize in the sciences, and the first woman to win a Nobel Prize in Chemistry since 1964.

Her research focuses on the mechanisms underlying protein biosynthesis using ribosomal crystallography, a research line that she pioneered over 20 years ago despite considerable skepticism from the international scientific community.

Her findings, which are crucial for developing advanced antibiotics, are now used by scientists to develop new antibiotics, directly assisting the saving of lives and decreasing humanity's suffering, according to the Nobel Prize Academy.

(By Lin Szu-yu and Hanna Liu)