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Frances Arnold, Gregory Winter and George Smith controlled evolution in the lab to produce greener technologies and new medicines.

Ways to speed up and control the evolution of proteins to produce greener technologies and new medicines have won three scientists the 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

Chemical engineer Frances Arnold, at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, is just the second woman to win the prize in the past 50 years. She was awarded half of the 9-million-Swedish-krona (US$1 million) pot. The remaining half was shared between Gregory Winter at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, UK, and George Smith at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

Arnold carried out pioneering work in the 1990s on ‘directed evolution’ of enzymes. She devised a method for inducing mutations in enzyme-producing bacteria and then screening and selecting the bacteria to speed up and direct enzyme evolution. These enzymes, proteins that catalyse chemical reactions, are now used in applications from making biofuels to synthesizing medical drugs.

“Biology has this one process that’s responsible for all this glorious complexity we see in nature,” she told Nature shortly after the prize announcement on 3 October. But although nature operates blindly, scientists know what chemical properties they want to get from an enzyme, and her techniques accelerate natural selection towards those goals. “It’s like breeding a racehorse.”

Antibody breakthrough

 

In 1985, Smith pioneered a method known as phage display. The technique uses a bacteriophage — a virus that infects bacteria — as a host that displays a protein on its outer coat, allowing researchers to find other molecules that interact with the protein. Winter developed and improved this technology, and invented ways to use it to evolve antibodies adapted for use as human therapeutics. Today, antibodies evolved using this method can neutralize toxins and counteract autoimmune diseases.

The first humanized antibody, called adalimumab (Humira), was discovered by Cambridge Antibody Technology — a company that Winter co-founded in 1989 — and was approved for treating rheumatoid arthritis in 2002. It is also used to treat psoriasis and inflammatory bowel diseases. In 2017, it was the world’s top-selling drug, generating revenues of $18.4 billion.

Scepticism abounded when the company was founded, says co-founder David Chiswell, and it struggled to find investors. “It was one of the earliest generations of European biotechs,” says Chiswell, who is now chief executive of Kymab, an antibody company also in Cambridge. “It was exciting times because we didn’t know what we were doing. And nobody in the world believed that antibodies were really good.”

Cold reception

 

Arnold also faced an uphill battle when she put forward the idea of evolving proteins in the lab, says Dane Wittrup, a protein engineer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. At the time, researchers thought that they would be able to sit down at a computer and rationally design proteins to carry out specific functions. “It was counter-cultural at the time,” he says. “But now, by and large, directed evolution is how the work is done.”

Nicholas Turner, an organic chemist at the University of Manchester, UK, agrees. “Pretty much every enzyme that is used for commercial-scale application will have been through some form of directed evolution,” he says.

Winter previously told Nature Biotechnology that he was lucky because the Laboratory of Molecular Biology had given him “carte blanche” to get on with his work without distinguishing between pure and applied science. “It would have been very difficult to have made my inventions on classic grant funding (it would have been seen as too applied) or on industry money (it would have been seen as too early, and anyway most companies weren't interested in antibodies at the beginning),” he said.

When asked about the impact of Brexit on UK science during a press conference on 3 October, Winter expressed some optimism. “So long as it’s not made difficult for us or more difficult than it is in the moment, then I think it won’t be too much of a problem,” he said. But, he added, if it becomes difficult to bring in top-ranked researchers from the rest of Europe, the outlook could be grim. “We need to stress to the government that they could end up killing a lot of UK science,” he said.

Winter also said that his drive to push his research out of the laboratory and into the clinic came from an early encounter with a woman with cancer who had received an early, experimental version of one of his humanized antibodies against a cancer-related protein. When Winter warned her that the effects of the therapy might not last, she told him not to worry: she only needed to live for a few more months, so that she could help her dying husband. “I was so choked by that,” Winter says..

During the prize announcement, Claes Gustafsson, chair of the Nobel Committee for Chemistry 2018, noted the benefits of the researchers’ work for humanity: “Our laureates have applied principles of Darwin in the test tubes, and used this approach to develop new types of chemicals for the greatest benefit of humankind.”

Female laureates

 

Before Arnold, the last woman to win the Nobel Prize in Chemistry was Ada Yonath, a crystallographer at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, who won in 2009 for mapping the structure of the ribosome, which generates proteins from the genetic code in cells. Before her, the most recent woman to win was crystallographer Dorothy Hodgkin, in 1964. Arnold is just the fifth female winner in the prize’s history. In 2016, she won the Millennium Technology Prize for her research.

Arnold was “stunned” when she received the call from Stockholm in the middle of the night. “It took me a minute to collect my wits.” She says that she realized early on how powerful her methods could be. “It was clear to me right away, but not yet to the rest of the world.”

And her favourite applications of directed evolution have yet to be realized. One of her dreams is to create an enzyme that can take carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and convert it to materials and fuels.

Nature 562, 176 (2018)

doi: 10.1038/d41586-018-06753-y
 


Europe’s €100-billion science plan

Budget proposed for European Union’s next big research-funding programme.

 

 


TOULOUSE (CENTRE DE CONGRÈS PIERRE-PAUL RIQUET)

Ces rencontres internationales, sont ouvertes à l’ensemble des pays de la francophonie et en particulier à l’Afrique francophone. Elles sont un rendez-vous unique pour renforcer les échanges entre les différents acteurs (recherche-enseignement, entreprises, instituts…) pour un développement durable des légumineuses dans les systèmes agricoles et les filières.

Pour la terre et les hommes, les légumineuses au cœur de l’innovation

Les légumineuses, formidable vivier d’innovations, sont un levier majeur pour relever les défis mondiaux du changement climatique et de la sécurité alimentaire.
Grâce à leur capacité à fixer l’azote atmosphérique et à leurs propriétés nutritionnelles, les légumineuses sont au cœur des transitions agroécologiques, environnementales et alimentaires.
Les regards croisés de ces journées favoriseront la construction de stratégies et de partenariats pour le développement des légumineuses.
Ces rencontres s’intéressent à l’ensemble des légumineuses – à graines, fourragères ou ligneuses – et visent à couvrir la diversité des systèmes agricoles dans lesquels elles sont insérées, ainsi que la diversité de leurs usages en alimentation humaine, animale et non-alimentaire.

Appel à communication

 

TOULOUSE (CENTRE DE CONGRÈS PIERRE-PAUL RIQUET) 17 - 18 oct17 - 18 


Les inscriptions et les soumissions des résumés pour les communications Orales et Affichées uniquement en ligne sur le site www.biolival.com.

Ouverture des inscriptions : 

Les dates limites de soumission et d’inscription sont fixées pour :

  • La soumission des résumés 
  • La sélection des résumés
  • L’envoi des e-Posters (Communications Affichées) 
  • La confirmation de la participation & Réservation de l’Hôtel 
  • La soumission des papiers pour le Journal of Bioressources Valorization JBV (pour les meilleurs travaux sélectionnés) 

https://www.biolival.com/8es-journees-dates-importantes/


L’ouverture de l’Institut des Sciences et Techniques Appliquées – ISTA- à l’Université de Constantine 1 dans les industries de Mécanique est une réponse concrète aux préoccupations des autorités du pays en matière d’employabilité des jeunes diplômés de l’université et de leur insertion dans le secteur socioéconomique.

 

L’Institut dispense actuellement deux parcours de formations en licences professionnalisantes (Bac+3). Ces formations  ont été élaborées en partenariat avec le secteur professionnel concerné de la région de Constantine et l’ADIUT (Association des IUT de France) avec le soutien de l’Ambassade de France à Alger

FICHE TECHNIQUE DE L’ISTA DE CONSTANTINE


إعلان للمترشحين المقبولين في السنة الأولى ماستر عن بعد إدارة محلية

ليكن في علم الطلبة المقبولين للتسجيل في السنة أولى ماستر عن بعد ادارة محلية أن آجال التسجيل تم تمديدها الى يوم 22/1/2018 و بعد فوات هذا التاريخ يسقط حق كل واحد في التسجيل

نعلم جميع المترشحين المقبولين في السنة أولى ماستر عن بعد إدارة محلية دفعة 2017 -2018 أنهم مدعوون للحضور إلى كلية الحقوق تيجاني هدام لإتمام عملية التسجيل مرفوقين بالوثائق التالية :

    • نسخة من شهادة البكالوريا بالنسبة لطلبة كلية الحقوق قسنطينة و نسخة أصلية من شهادة البكالوريا بالنسبة لطلبة كليات الحقوق الأخرى .
    • كشف النقاط أصلي
    • شهادة ليسانس أصلية للتأكد
    • (2)صورتان شمسيتان
    • تصريح شرفي
    • شهادة حسن السيرة و السلوك
    • تكاليف التكوين في السنة أولى ماستر المقدرة ب 20.000 دج

 

ملاحظة :الالتزام ببرنامج التسجيل و توقيته ضروري وأكيد

        • يكون التسجيل وفق المواعيد المدونة في الجدول
        • يكون التسجيل حسب التوقيت التالي :من 9 صباحا إلى 14 مساء .
        • مكان التسجيل في قاعة الانترنيت كلية الحقوق الدخول من الباب الخلفي للكلية
        • نعلم جميع المترشحين غير المقبولين أن لهم الحق في تقديم تظلم في أجل 48 ساعة في رئاسة قسم العلوم الإدارية

  إظغط على الرابط التالي لإظهار النتائج  https://apps.umc.edu.dz/master-online17


L’université Frères Mentouri - Constantine 1, lance le 1er appel d’une série de formations dans les différents logiciels de la suite Microsoft Office pour une utilisation approfondie.

Formation proposée :

Excel niveau 1 (débutant):

Objectif : avoir les connaissances de base du logiciel pour une manipulation et une utilisation quotidienne.

Contenu de la formation :

-Apprendre le vocabulaire d’Excel. 

-Se familiariser avec l’interface de Microsoft Excel. 

-Gestion des cellules. 

-La mise en forme des feuilles de calcul. 

-La mise en page et impression. 

-Gestion des feuilles de calcul et des classeurs. 

-Gestion des Formules et Fonctions. 

-Gestion des Graphiques.

 

Prix : 3500DA (Tarif étudiants 1500DA).

Durée : 5 jours en présentiel de 9h30 à 12H30.

Inscription : Via le site http://apps.umc.edu.dz/formation-office-excel/

 

 

 

 


13 Novembre 2017
500 Places Pédagogiques Tidjani Haddam
Public cible :
- Responsables des matières concernées (anglais, communication, PPPE et entrepreneuriat) dans les
licences professionnalisantes et les responsables de parcours
- Enseignants de d’autre licence

 

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