The Wang Ying-Lai Memorial Lecture was initiated in memory of Professor Wang Ying-Lai (1907-2001) in 2001 in recognition of his significant contributions to science and medicine.

Professor Wang was a pioneer in the chemical synthesis of insulin in the 1950s and transfer-RNA in the 1960s. He was also instrumental in the founding of the Institute of Biochemistry of the Academia Sinica in Shanghai. He founded, and was for many years the editor-in-chief of China's premier journal in the field, Acta Biochimica et Biophysica Sinica. The most significant scientific contribution of Professor Wang was the chemical synthesis of crystalline insulin from individually synthesized amino acids, the building blocks of protein. This monumental accomplishment represented a conceptual breakthrough in converting lifeless chemicals to a protein with biological activity. Because of his successful work with insulin as well as its significant contributions to science and medicine, Swedish scientist A. Tiselius, a member of the Nobel Prize committee and Chinese-American Nobel laureate C.N. Yang independently suggested Professor Wang be nominated for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. He was denied the opportunity due to some unfortunate circumstances. However, Professor Wang was allowed to receive a special achievement award at the Miami Biotechnology Lecture in 1988.

The Memorial Lecture brings together scientists from various related fields so as to further advance the knowledge and experience in the field to which Professor Wang had devoted his entire scientific career. Meanwhile the Memorial Lecture offers an opportunity to recapitulate the contributions made by Chinese scientists in the field of science and beyond.

2017 Wang Ying-Lai Memorial Lecture

Speaker: Wah Chiu, Stanford University
Date: 3:00 pm, November 17
Location: Levin North Auditorium

Title: CryoEM for Molecular and Cell Biology