Local academic receives US National Medal of Science

Staff Writer, with CNA, Washington

Sun, Oct 23, 2011 - Page 2

Chien Shu (錢煦), an academic at Taiwan’s leading research institute Academica Sinica, received the US National Medal of Science from US President Barack Obama at an awards ceremony held at the White House on Friday.

The medal is the highest honor bestowed by the US government on scientists, engineers and inventors. Chien was the only ethnic Chinese recipient out of 12 awardees.

He was given the prestigious award for his pioneering work in cardiovascular physiology and bioengineering.

Such research has impacted the study of rheology, microcirculation and mechanotransduction (mechanisms in which cells convert mechanical stimuli into chemical activity).

A bioengineering professor based in the US, Chien is a world leading researcher on the impact of blood flow and pressure on blood vessels.

Upon receiving the award, Chien thanked Academica Sinica and other research partners for their long-term support and said the secret to his success was giving his all in research and excelling at what he loved.

He has been able to dedicate so many years to research because for him scientific research is like a hobby, and science a form of entertainment, Chien later told the press.

However, it was still important for scientists to maintain a balance between research and society and to make time for family, he added.

Chien plans to continue his research on the impact of blood flow and pressure on the cell lining of blood vessels and the mechanisms that regulate blood flow in blood vessels under healthy and diseased conditions to help improve the people’s health and quality of life.

The National Medal of Science awardees are selected from over 1,000 science researchers by the US National Science Foundation and is administered by the White House.

At the awards ceremony, Obama said that although the National Medal of Science awardees would not be appearing on the covers of People magazine, their contributions to improving people’s lives exceed imagination.