14th Annual L’Oréal-UNESCO Awards For Women Honors Singapore Scientist
April 5, 2012
An outstanding woman scientist from Singapore was announced this week as the recipient of the prestigious 2012 L’Oréal-UNESCO International Fellowship award.
AsianScientist (Apr. 5, 2012) – An outstanding woman scientist from Singapore was announced this week as the recipient of the prestigious 2012 L’Oréal-UNESCO International Fellowship award.
Dr Patricia Ng, Research Fellow at the Agency for Science, Technology and Research’s (A*STAR) Singapore Immunology Network, was among 15 winners from around the world to receive the International Fellowship accolade at the 14th Annual L’Oréal-UNESCO Awards for Women in Science held at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France.
This year’s fellows were selected by an independent, international jury presided by Jury President Professor Günter Blobel.
The L’Oréal-UNESCO International Fellowship program was created in 2000 to encourage distinguished women scientists at doctoral or postdoctoral level and provide visibility and recognition for their excellent work, contribution to scientific advancement and impact on society.
Three International Fellows are chosen from each of the five UNESCO regions to continue their research in prestigious institutions outside their home country. Winners are also entitled to USD$20,000 for their work; with a potential extension of 12 additional months with up to USD$20,000 additional funding.
Dr Patricia Ng’s doctorate research focuses on the challenge of re-engineering antibodies, the body’s main arm against infection, so that they become more effective in fighting disease.
Recent research has shown that some antibodies can bind to adenoviruses (medium-sized nonenveloped viruses), allowing them to follow the viruses into the cell. Within the cell, a protein called TRIM21 is able to detect the antibody, while triggering a biological mechanism which destroys the virus and prevents it from multiplying inside the cell.
Ng’s study focuses on strengthening the antibody interaction with TRIM21, which may allow the cell to kill viruses more readily.
“I want to contribute to the development of protein-based therapy, so that these drugs can become more affordable and lead to effective treatments for infectious diseases,” said Ng.
For the past 14 years, the L’Oréal Corporate Foundation and UNESCO have provided global support to women researchers who contribute to moving science forward. To date, International Fellowships have been granted to 180 women from 83 countries, enabling them to pursue their research at home or abroad.
Source: L’Oréal Singapore.
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