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Professor Ben L. Feringa, 2016 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry, gave a lecture at Sun Yat-sen University

Last updated :2017-11-02

Source: School of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Written by: School of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Photo by: Zhou Qian
Edited by: Wang Dongmei

On October 27, 2017, the 17th Session of Nobel Laureates Series Lectures at Sun Yat-sen University organized by the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, the Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs of Guangdong Province, and Sun Yat-sen University was held in Swasey Hall on Guangzhou South Campus. Professor Ben L. Feringa, winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2016, was invited to give a lecture entitled “The Art of Building Small”.

The lecture was hosted by Prof. Albert S. C. Chan, Academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, professor at the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences of Sun Yat-sen University. Prof. Albert S. C. Chan delivered a welcome speech and read a letter of congratulation sent by the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs. About 300 faculty and students from the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Chemistry, School of Life Sciences, and School of Medicine attended the lecture. 

Professor Ben L. Feringa giving a lecture entitled “The Art of Building Small” at Sun Yat-sen University
During the lecture, Professor Feringa used a vivid image and video to introduce the principle of molecular motors and showed applications of molecular switches developed in light-switchable protein channels for nanoscale drug delivery systems, responsive catalysts and photopharmacology. He also showed us a lot about how to control the molecular activation and deactivation, molecular 'nanocar’, nano robots and other aspects. He had a great vision for the development and application of nanomolecular machines and encouraged us to work together to apply these molecular machines to biomedical science in the near future. In the Q&A session, Prof. Feringa won a burst of applause by answering students' and teachers' questions with patience and care.

Professor Wenhao Hu, dean of the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences of Sun Yat-sen University, presented the certificate of honorary professor to Professor Feringa.

Ben L. Feringa obtained his PhD degree at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands under the guidance of Professor Hans Wynberg. After working as a research scientist at Shell in the Netherlands and at the Shell Biosciences Centre in the UK, he was appointed lecturer and in 1988 full professor at the University of Groningen. He was elected Foreign Honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and is member and vice-president of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences. In 2008 he was appointed Academy Professor and was knighted by Her Majesty the Queen of the Netherlands. Professor Feringa's research has been recognized with a number of awards including the Koerber European Science Award (2003), the Spinoza Award (2004), the Prelog gold medal (2005), the Norrish Award of the ACS (2007), the Paracelsus medal (2008), the Chirality medal (2009), the RSC Organic Stereochemistry Award (2011), Humboldt Award (2012), the Grand Prix Scientifique Cino del Duca (French Academy 2012), the Marie Curie medal (2013) and the Nagoya Gold Medal (2013). His research interest includes stereochemistry, organic synthesis, asymmetric catalysis, molecular switches and motors, self-assembly and molecular nanosystems. In 2016, he shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry together with Sir James Fraser Stoddart and Jean-Pierre Sauvage for the design and synthesis of molecular machines.