Three Scientists Honored With Future Science Prize

The second edition of the Future Science Prize featured a new prize category and saw three scientists awarded with US$1,000,000 each.

AsianScientist (Oct. 2, 2017) – In recognition of their significant contributions to their respective fields, Professor Shi Yigong of Tsinghua University, Professor Pan Jianwei of the University of Science and Technology of China and Professor Xu Chenyang of the Beijing International Center of Mathematics Research have each been awarded US$ 1,000,000 in research funding under the 2017 Future Science Prize.

Jointly established in 2016 by scientists and entrepreneurs in mainland China, the Future Science Prize is seen as the Chinese equivalent of the Nobel Prize and aims to inject private capital into academic pursuits of fundamental scientific knowledge. In its second edition this year, a third prize category was introduced—the Mathematics and Computer Science Prize—in addition to the Life Science and Physics Prizes.

Shi, a structural biologist, received the Life Science Prize for obtaining high-resolution structures of the eukaryotic spliceosome, a protein complex responsible for processing messenger RNA (mRNA) in biological systems. Using the technique of cryo-electron microscopy, he was able to observe the active site of the spliceosome and determine the molecular mechanism by which the spliceosome matures mRNA.

The Physics Prize was awarded to Pan who is a quantum physicist, in honor of his work on quantum optical technology. Leveraging the principles of quantum mechanics and quantum entanglement, two parties can produce a random secret key for the encryption of messages. Hence, Pan’s discoveries have major implications for secure communications.

Finally, Xu was conferred the inaugural Mathematics and Computer Science Prize for his contributions to birational algebraic geometry, a specific branch of mathematics that has applications in statistics, geometric modelling and computing, among others.

An award ceremony will be held at the China World Hotel in Beijing on October 29, 2017.


Copyright: Asian Scientist Magazine; Photo: Future Science Prize.
Disclaimer: This article does not necessarily reflect the views of AsianScientist or its staff.

Jeremy received his PhD from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, where he studied the role of the tumor microenvironment in cancer progression.

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