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Last night, (thanks to both Per-Ola Norrby and a whim), I tweeted right before bed:I am down for some hot Karplus action. That is who I am rooting for. #chemnobelI'm stunned to find that Professor Karplus won. Congratulations to him, Pro...
Last night, (thanks to both Per-Ola Norrby and a whim), I tweeted right before bed:I am down for some hot Karplus action. That is who I am rooting for. #chemnobelI'm stunned to find that Professor Karplus won. Congratulations to him, Professors Levitt of Stanford and Professor Warshel of USC for winning the 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.Here is the initial NPR report on the computational chemistry Nobel Prize; listen as host Steve Inskeep and science report Richard Harris attempt to explain this work. (Here's a more detailed story from NPR.) Inskeep is known for his jokey demeanor, so I won't get too bent out of shape about his professions of ignorance; that said, it's hard not to take it as a sign of how far chemists have to go in communicating their science.
about 3 hours ago
Last night, (thanks to both Per-Ola Norrby and a whim), I tweeted right before bed:I am down for some hot Karplus action. That is who I am rooting for. #chemnobelI'm stunned to find that Professor Karplus won. Congratulations to him, Pro...
Last night, (thanks to both Per-Ola Norrby and a whim), I tweeted right before bed:I am down for some hot Karplus action. That is who I am rooting for. #chemnobelI'm stunned to find that Professor Karplus won. Congratulations to him, Professors Levitt of Stanford and Professor Warshel of USC for winning the 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.Here is the initial NPR report on the computational chemistry Nobel Prize; listen as host Steve Inskeep and science report Richard Harris attempt to explain this work. (Here's a more detailed story from NPR.) Inskeep is known for his jokey demeanor, so I won't get too bent out of shape about his professions of ignorance; that said, it's hard not to take it as a sign of how far chemists have to go in communicating their science.
about 3 hours ago
THE Nobel prize in physics highlights the flaws of the awards process, Twitter prepares to go public and an electric car catches fire
THE Nobel prize in physics highlights the flaws of the awards process, Twitter prepares to go public and an electric car catches fire
about 6 hours ago
Just a note, in case any investors didn't realize it: no, drugs (and a drug companies) are not out of the woods after a compound has been approved and is on the market. Take a look at what's happening to Ariad and their BCR-ABL compound ...
Just a note, in case any investors didn't realize it: no, drugs (and a drug companies) are not out of the woods after a compound has been approved and is on the market. Take a look at what's happening to Ariad and their BCR-ABL compound Iclusig (ponatinib). This is used to treat patients that have become resistant to Gleevec, and it's a very big deal for both those patients and for Ariad as a company. But the percentage of patients on the drug showing serious complications from blood clots has been rising, and that's prompted a number of moves: enrollment in further clinical trials is on hold, dosages are being lowered for current patients, and the product's label is being changed to add warnings of cardiovascular effects. If you're wondering how this affects Ariad as a whole, well, the stock is down 66% in premarket trading as I write. . .
about 6 hours ago
Just a note, in case any investors didn't realize it: no, drugs (and a drug companies) are not out of the woods after a compound has been approved and is on the market. Take a look at what's happening to Ariad and their BCR-ABL compound ...
Just a note, in case any investors didn't realize it: no, drugs (and a drug companies) are not out of the woods after a compound has been approved and is on the market. Take a look at what's happening to Ariad and their BCR-ABL compound Iclusig (ponatinib). This is used to treat patients that have become resistant to Gleevec, and it's a very big deal for both those patients and for Ariad as a company. But the percentage of patients on the drug showing serious complications from blood clots has been rising, and that's prompted a number of moves: enrollment in further clinical trials is on hold, dosages are being lowered for current patients, and the product's label is being changed to add warnings of cardiovascular effects. If you're wondering how this affects Ariad as a whole, well, the stock is down 66% in premarket trading as I write. . .
about 6 hours ago
For some, a 40th birthday can be a harbinger of a midlife crisis. Not so for the National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists & Chemical Engineers, or NOBCChE (pronounced no-buh-shay). Last week, the organizat...
For some, a 40th birthday can be a harbinger of a midlife crisis. Not so for the National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists & Chemical Engineers, or NOBCChE (pronounced no-buh-shay). Last week, the organization held its 40th annual meeting, and just like NOBCChE’s first meeting in New Orleans in 1973, this year’s meeting in Indianapolis provided minority chemists and chemical engineers with an opportunity to present research, reconnect with old friends, and meet new ones. Even the Newscripts gang had an opportunity to mingle with some meeting attendees. Below are a sampling of the fun and interesting people that Newscripts stumbled upon in between visits to local steakhouses and rides on Formula 1 race cars. Windmon. Credit: Jeff Huber/C&EN (all) Name: Nicole Windmon Background: Fifth-year graduate student at Notre Dame University researching ?-lactam mimics in an effort to facilitate antibiotic development. Number of years attending NOBCChE meeting: First year. Reasons for attending NOBCChE meeting: “I’m entering the job market very soon, so I’m looking to work on my résumé writing skills and my cover letter writing skills and learn how to do a good interview.” Thanthirige. Name: Viraj Thanthirige Background: Third-year graduate student from Sri Lanka who is studying gold nanoclusters at Western Michigan University. Number of years attending NOBCChE meeting: First year. Reasons for attending NOBCChE meeting: To present research on gold nanoclusters and volunteer at the science bowl for middle and high school students. Nzamubona. Name: Kimara F. Nzamubona Background: Senior undergraduate chemistry and French studies student at Colby College originally from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Number of years attending NOBCChE meeting: First year. Reasons for attending NOBCChE meeting: “Talking to schools, looking for internships, job opportunities, networking. Networking … that was the main reason why I came here.” Quote: “Being here and seeing other people who are just like me, who have the same background as me, it’s great because it gives you hope.” Raji. Name: Idris Raji Background: Third-year graduate student at Georgia Institute of Technology originally from Nigeria. Number of years attending NOBCChE meeting: First year. Reasons for attending NOBCChE meeting: “It’s a good avenue to come present my research to my colleagues in the field, and it’s a good networking opportunity as well.” Jemison. Name: Racquel Jemison Background: Ph.D. student at Carnegie Mellon University defending her thesis in December. Reasons for attending NOBCChE meeting: To present research on the use of Grignard metathesis to synthesize regioregular poly(3-hexylthiophene), which is used for organic electronic applications. First NOBCChE meeting: Orlando, 2007. Quote: “NOBCChE is really like a small family, and coming here every year is like the family reunion.” Galpothdeniya. Name: Indika Galpothdeniya Background: Fourth-year graduate student at Louisiana State University originally from Sri Lanka. Number of years attending NOBCChE meeting: First year. Reasons for attending NOBCChE meeting: To present on the “Development of Smart Fabrics Using Optoelectronic Ionic Liquids” and take advantage of career development workshops focused on such topics as résumé writing and negotiating job offers. Related Posts:Minority Student Success with NOBCChESafety at #ACSAnaheimPittcon 2012 Networking Session: Chemistry Careers Beyond…This Week on CENtral Science: #SheriSangji, #NerdNite, and…This Week on CENtral Science: Pancreatic Cancer Drug…
about 6 hours ago
MODELS are a scientist’s favourite toy. Playing with mathematical building blocks is a good way to get an idea of the machinery of a real natural phenomenon. But models by definition trade accuracy for simplicity: they take into account ...
MODELS are a scientist’s favourite toy. Playing with mathematical building blocks is a good way to get an idea of the machinery of a real natural phenomenon. But models by definition trade accuracy for simplicity: they take into account only those variables which are deemed essential. Otherwise, they would become too unwieldy—at least for scientists (or deputised graduate students) to tackle by hand. Computers, though, are better than humans at mindless mathematical grunt work. They have allowed modellers to incorporate ever more factors into their equations, making the toys resemble the real deal to an ever greater extent. There are, however, limits to the mathematical prowess even of computers. This year’s Nobel prize in chemistry was awarded to a trio of researchers who came up with a clever way of circumventing some of them. Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt and Arieh Warshel collectively helped to tame the daunting mathematical complexity involved in simulating chemical reactions. A good way to think about chemistry is as applied physics. Chemical reactions involve the gyrations of electrons, whose behaviour is well-understood...Continue reading
about 8 hours ago
The 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has gone to Martin Karplus of Harvard, Michael Levitt of Stanford, and Arieh Warshel of USC. This year's prize is one of those that covers a field by recognizing some of its most prominent developers, an...
The 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has gone to Martin Karplus of Harvard, Michael Levitt of Stanford, and Arieh Warshel of USC. This year's prize is one of those that covers a field by recognizing some of its most prominent developers, and this one (for computational methods) has been anticipated for some time. It's good to see it come along, though, since Karplus is now 83, and his name has been on the "Could easily win a Nobel" lists for some years now. (Anyone who's interpreted an NMR spectrum of an organic molecule will know him for a contribution that he's not even cited for by the Nobel committee, the relationship between coupling constants and dihedral angles). Here's the Nobel Foundation's information on this year's subject matter, and it's a good overview, as usual. This one has to cover a lot of ground, though, because the topic is a large one. The writeup emphasizes (properly) the split between classical and quantum-mechanical approaches to chemical modeling. The former is easier to accomplish (relatively!), but the latter is much more relevant (crucial, in fact) as you get down towards the scale of individual atoms and bonds. Computationally, though, it's a beast. This year's laureates pioneered some very useful techniques to try to have it both ways. This started to come together in the 1970s, and the methods used were products of necessity. The computing power available wouldn't let you just brute-force your way past many problems, so a lot of work had to go into figuring out where best to deploy the resources you had. What approximations could you get away with? How did you use your quantum-mechanical calculations to give you classical potentials to work with? Where should be boundaries between the two be drawn? Even with today's greater computational power these are still key questions, because molecular dynamics calculations can still eat up all the processor time you can throw at them. That's especially true when you apply these methods to biomolecules like proteins and DNA, and one thing you'll notice about all three of the prize winners is that they went after these problems very early. That took a lot of nerve, given the resources available, but that's what distinguishes really first-rate scientists: they go after hard, important problems, and if the tools to tackle such things don't exist, they invent them. How hard these problems are can be seen by what we can (and still can't) do by computational simulations here in 2013. How does a protein fold, and how does it end up in the shape it has? What parts of it move around, and by how much? What forces drive the countless interactions between proteins and ligands, other proteins, DNA and RNA molecules, and all the rest? What can we simulate, and what can we predict? I've said some critical things about molecular modeling over the years, but those have mostly been directed at people who oversell it or don't understand its limitations. People like Karplus, Levitt, and Warshel, though, know those limitations in great detail, and they've devoted their careers to pushing them back, year after year. Congratulations to them all! More coverage: Curious Wavefunction, and others to be added during the morning. Addendum: for almost every Nobel awarded in the sciences, there are people that miss out due to the "three laureate" rule. This year, I'd say that it was Norman Allinger, whose work bears very much on the subject of this year's prize. Another prominent computational chemist whose name comes up in Nobel discussions is Ken Houk, whose work is directed more towards mechanisms of organic reactions, and who might well be recognized the next time computational chemistry comes around in Sweden.
about 8 hours ago
The 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has gone to Martin Karplus of Harvard, Michael Levitt of Stanford, and Arieh Warshel of USC. This year's prize is one of those that covers a field by recognizing some of its most prominent developers, an...
The 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has gone to Martin Karplus of Harvard, Michael Levitt of Stanford, and Arieh Warshel of USC. This year's prize is one of those that covers a field by recognizing some of its most prominent developers, and this one (for computational methods) has been anticipated for some time. It's good to see it come along, though, since Karplus is now 83, and his name has been on the "Could easily win a Nobel" lists for some years now. (Anyone who's interpreted an NMR spectrum of an organic molecule will know him for a contribution that he's not even cited for by the Nobel committee, the relationship between coupling constants and dihedral angles). Here's the Nobel Foundation's information on this year's subject matter, and it's a good overview, as usual. This one has to cover a lot of ground, though, because the topic is a large one. The writeup emphasizes (properly) the split between classical and quantum-mechanical approaches to chemical modeling. The former is easier to accomplish (relatively!), but the latter is much more relevant (crucial, in fact) as you get down towards the scale of individual atoms and bonds. Computationally, though, it's a beast. This year's laureates pioneered some very useful techniques to try to have it both ways. This started to come together in the 1970s, and the methods used were products of necessity. The computing power available wouldn't let you just brute-force your way past many problems, so a lot of work had to go into figuring out where best to deploy the resources you had. What approximations could you get away with? How did you use your quantum-mechanical calculations to give you classical potentials to work with? Where should be boundaries between the two be drawn? Even with today's greater computational power these are still key questions, because molecular dynamics calculations can still eat up all the processor time you can throw at them. That's especially true when you apply these methods to biomolecules like proteins and DNA, and one thing you'll notice about all three of the prize winners is that they went after these problems very early. That took a lot of nerve, given the resources available, but that's what distinguishes really first-rate scientists: they go after hard, important problems, and if the tools to tackle such things don't exist, they invent them. How hard these problems are can be seen by what we can (and still can't) do by computational simulations here in 2013. How does a protein fold, and how does it end up in the shape it has? What parts of it move around, and by how much? What forces drive the countless interactions between proteins and ligands, other proteins, DNA and RNA molecules, and all the rest? What can we simulate, and what can we predict? I've said some critical things about molecular modeling over the years, but those have mostly been directed at people who oversell it or don't understand its limitations. People like Karplus, Levitt, and Warshel, though, know those limitations in great detail, and they've devoted their careers to pushing them back, year after year. Congratulations to them all! More coverage: Curious Wavefunction, and others to be added during the morning. The popular press coverage of this award will surely be even worse than usual, because not many people charged with writing the headlines are going to understand what it's about. Addendum: for almost every Nobel awarded in the sciences, there are people that miss out due to the "three laureate" rule. This year, I'd say that it was Norman Allinger, whose work bears very much on the subject of this year's prize. Another prominent computational chemist whose name comes up in Nobel discussions is Ken Houk, whose work is directed more towards mechanisms of organic reactions, and who might well be recognized the next time computational chemistry comes around in Sweden.
about 8 hours ago
Staffan Normark, Permanent Secretary of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, has just announced Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt and Arieh Warshel as this year’s recipients of the chemistry prize, “for the development of mult...
Staffan Normark, Permanent Secretary of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, has just announced Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt and Arieh Warshel as this year’s recipients of the chemistry prize, “for the development of multiscale models for complex chemical systems.” Allowing classical and quantum mechanics to shake hands. Unthinkable 20 years ago. Warshel was reached first at 3:00 am local time in Los Angeles. He describes the advance of his work from X-ray crystal structures which is like, “seeing a watch and wondering how it works.” Way which required computer to take a structure of a protein and then to eventually understand how it does what it does. Related Posts:Physics Wins Dance Your Ph.D. ContestThis Week on CENtral Science: @ChemistHulk, #acsnola drug…This Week on CENtral Science: #chemnobel, cellulosic…This Week on CENtral Science: #SheriSangji update, acetyl…Harlem Shake ft. Tryptophan
about 10 hours ago