March 22, 2001
Duy H. Hua
Department of Chemistry
Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS 66506 U. S. A.
I would like to express my sincere thanks to Dr. Lou-Sing Kan for his kind invitation, hospitality, and arrangement of my trip to Taiwan. I am very grateful to have the opportunity to participate in the Symposium on Medicinal Chemistry and Drug Design on March 13, 2001 at the Institute of Chemistry, Academia Sinica (ICAS) and to visit National Taiwan University on March 15, National Central University on March 16, Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) on March 19, and Academia Sinica on March 21. Visits of the above places were most educational and enjoyable. I am greatly appreciated the kind hospitality from various excellent researchers from the above places.
First, the symposium on Medicinal Chemistry and Drug Design was well organized. I presented a seminar on our work of biologically active compounds and enjoyed lectures from other speakers who provided various studies on the investigation of new drug discovery. The symposium also provided opportunity for interaction and discussion among international and domestic researchers.
Second, I visited the Department of Chemistry, National Taiwan University at Taipei and presented a seminar. Discussion with a number of young professors, such as Shiuh-Tzung Liu (Chairman of the department), Yeun-Min Tsai, Tong-ing Ho, Lee-Chiang Lo, Man-kit Leung, Ken-Tsung Wong, and Jim-Min Fang, were carried out. Many interesting chemistry are being studied by the above young chemists, and impressive instrumentation and financial support are available in the Department. Research on material science including biomaterial and biophysics is concentrated.
Third, I also presented a seminar in the Department of Chemistry, National Central University. I had the opportunity to discuss chemistry with Professors Jye-Shane Yang, Wen-Ren Lee, Chung-kung Lai, and Kwang-Hwa Lii. It appears that biomaterial and supramolecular chemistry are being focused. The facilities are adequate and more professors will be hired and instruments will be added in the near future. There is a great potential for the department to grow.
Fourth, I visited Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) and presented a seminar. Again, discussion with Vice President, Dr. Johnsee Lee, Director Chung-Cheng Liu, Researchers York Yeuk-Chuen Liu, Shang-Chia Chang, and Kuo-Chang Tang were most educational. Many different developments from ITRI, especially the Biomedical Engineering Center, were described. A possible collaboration is being considered.
Last, I presented a seminar at the Institute of Chemistry, Academia Sinica and discussed with various researchers such as Professors Tahsin Chow, Lou-sing Kan, and Ling-Kang Liu. The chemistry was stimulating and exciting. I am impressed with the level of enthusiasm and productivity of the research carried out in the Institute of Chemistry.
Overall, the visit was most educational and enjoyable. I think most of the organic chemistry are concentrated on material and biotechnological science areas, which are good. There is a lack of traditional synthetic organic chemistry including development of new methodology, synthesis of biologically active natural and unnatural products, and asymmetric catalysis. These areas may be out of fashion, but are the basis and core of bioorganic, new drug development, and material science. In ten years, if most of our students (undergraduate and graduate) were not trained in traditional synthetic organic chemistry, there will be no chemist to prepare new materials or drugs. Again, I appreciate greatly to Professors Sunney I. Chan and Lou-Sing Kan for their generous hospitality and effort to inviting me to Taiwan and arranging a wonderful visit for me.
Professor Duy H. Hua