Updated on 9 July 2012
Dr Chi-huey Wong, president, Academia Sinica, Taiwan
Academia Sinica is an autonomous research institution in Taiwan that is doing pioneering work in the field of science and technology, including biotechnology. Its present president, Dr Chi-Huey Wong, leads from the front with his path-breaking work in glycoscience.
He has been interested in and actively involved in the research of glycoscience in the past 30 years, initially with focus on technology development and then on application to study diseases, especially cancer and some infectious diseases. His work has helped in better understanding how cell surface carbohydrates play a role in disease progression. It has also helped in identifying important carbohydrate molecules associated with diseases for drug discovery and diagnostic development.
In Taiwan, as the chief scientific adviser to the government, he plays an important role in shaping the biotechnology industry. Excerpts from an email interview with him:
Tell us about the work being done by Academia Sinica in the field of biotechnology.
Dr Wong: Academia Sinica is the highest ranking academic institution in Taiwan with heavy research activities in sciences and humanities. Both discovery research and translational innovation are the major efforts in the life science division. In addition, there is an incubation center for start-up companies that receive technologies invented by scientists in Academia Sinica for development into products, mainly in the area of new medicines and to some extent new medical tools and instruments.