Singapore’s Top Scientists Honored At PSTA 2017

Seven of Singapore’s best scientists were recognized at the ninth President’s Science and Technology Awards.

AsianScientist (Nov. 14, 2017) – Four individuals have been awarded this year’s President’s Science and Technology Awards, the highest honors conferred upon research scientists and engineers in Singapore whose work have resulted in significant scientific, technological or economic benefits for the country.

The PSTA comprises the President’s Science and Technology Medal (PSTM), President’s Science Award (PSA), and President’s Technology Award (PTA). The winners received their awards from Singapore’s President, Madam Halimah Yacob, during a ceremony held yesterday at the Istana.

Professor Edward Warren Holmes, Department of Medicine, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore (NUS); Senior Fellow at the Agency for Science Technology and Research (A*STAR) and Advisor, National Research Foundation, was one of two recipients of the PSTM. An honorary citizen of Singapore, Holmes was conferred the medal for his pioneering work in developing the human capital, program and infrastructure that galvanized translational and clinical research in Singapore’s health and biomedical sciences ecosystem.

Professor Sir David Philip Lane, Chief Scientist of A*STAR, also received the PSTM for his important role in the strategic development of Singapore’s biomedical sciences and distinguished contributions to cancer therapeutics and research.

Lane’s accomplishments in cancer therapeutics and research have also had far-reaching impact locally and internationally. He played a significant role in the landmark discovery of the p53 cancer gene in 1979. Known as the ‘guardian of the genome,’ p53 is mutated in more than half of all cancers. Lane’s discovery has led to the identification of several promising targets for developing new cancer drugs using p53 as a model system, one of which is the utilization of antibodies and peptides to interrogate cancer targets.

Meanwhile, this year’s PSA was awarded to Professor Gan Wee Teck, Distinguished Professor at the Department of Mathematics under NUS Faculty of Science, for his illustrious contributions to the field of mathematics, and his outstanding work on the Langlands program and the Gan-Gross-Prasad conjecture. His research has helped to link the two mathematical fields of number theory and representation theory. This has been lauded as ground-breaking and a step forward in the field of mathematics.

Professor Ng Wun Jern from the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), was awarded the PTA for his outstanding research and development of a space-efficient, transient-state cyclic bio-system, and realization of the contiguous value chain from research to industry full-scale deployment for wastewater management and resource recovery.

Three outstanding young individuals were also recognized with the Young Scientist Award for their achievements in research and innovation, receiving their awards from Mr. Heng Swee Keat, Minister for Finance, at the Istana.

Dr. Li Jingmei, Senior Research Scientist at the Genome Institute of Singapore, A*STAR, was honored for her research on mammographic density and its impact on women’s health; Dr. Gao Weibo, Assistant Professor, from the School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, NTU Singapore, was lauded for his distinguished research on quantum information and quantum photonics; and Dr. Justin C.W. Song, scientist at the Institute of High Performance Computing, A*STAR, was recognized for his research unveiling novel electronic properties of quantum materials.

More photos of the event can be found here.


Source: Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore; Photo: A*STAR.
Disclaimer: This article does not necessarily reflect the views of AsianScientist or its staff.

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