On March 7th, Hiroshima University held a lecture meeting titled “From Hiroshima University to the world: Wisdom from world-renowned researchers” inviting two Nobel Prize winning researchers, Professor Sir John Gurdon of the Wellcome Trust / Cancer Research UK Gurdon Institute at the University of Cambridge and Professor Shinya Yamanaka of Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA) at Kyoto University. They were awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine together in 2012.
About 1,000 people were able to enjoy the lecture at Satake Memorial Hall, including students from “Super Science High Schools”, Hiroshima University students, and members of the local community.
Both of the Nobel Prize winning researchers have a connection with our university. Professor Sir Gurdon visited Hiroshima in 1962 and is currently engaged in a joint genome editing research project between his institution and the Graduate School of Science, Hiroshima University. Professor Yamanaka has delivered a lecture about regenerative medicine twice at Kasumi campus. They kindly accepted our request to come to the university and give a lecture.
During his lecture, Professor Yamanaka said that what motivated him to start research was his hope to find cures for those diseases that have no cure in the current medical practice. He told the audience, “Having a clear vision of why you are researching is very important as well as working hard on your research.”
Professor Sir Gurdon talked about his research on cell nuclear transfer using Xenopus. During his lecture, he said that “There are ethical and legal issues for cell replacement therapy. But it should be the patient’s right to choose which treatment he or she will have,” showing his vigorous keenness for research.
At the question and answer time, there were questions from high school students, sometimes in English, and both professors answered politely saying, “Your question is great.”
After the lecture meeting, President Mitsuo Ochi praised their achievements by giving both professors the title of “Hiroshima University Honorary Distinguished Professor.”
|Professor Shinya Yamanaka||Professor Sir John Gurdon|
|A commemorative photograph after presenting a bouquet of flowers to the two professors||The audience of the lecture meeting|
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