Umeå researcher on the top list of future biochemists
Professor Yaowen Wu has been appointed as future top biochemistry researcher in American Chemical Society's prestigious journal Biochemistry. A total of 34 selected researchers in their early career in biochemistry from all around the world were presented in this year's first issue.
Text: Ingrid Söderbergh
Yaowen Wu, Professor in Biochemistry at Umeå University.
The 34 scientists are recognized by their work that transcend traditional field boundaries and challenges that seemed impossible only decades ago.
"It is a great honor to be recognized as a scientist representing the future of biochemistry. The field of biochemistry has witnessed substantial changes in past decades. The emerging problems require new and innovative ideas that go beyond traditional field boundaries. The synergy between chemistry and biology has been continuously growing as scientists tackle increasingly complex problems. I am pleased to contribute to this fascinating progress", says Yaowen Wu, Professor in Biochemistry, Department of Chemistry, Umeå University.
Yaowen Wu's lab focuses on developing novel chemical approaches, including protein chemical modification, chemical and chemo-optogenetics, and using these tools to tackle biological problems with focus on membrane trafficking and autophagy.
His lab has pioneered the development of chemo-optogenetic tools to enable manipulation of protein or organelle function in the cell with high spatiotemporal precision. These tools have facilitated the study of highly dynamic processes like autophagosome formation and are beneficial for investigating subcellular or sub-tissue physiology. His lab has developed a set of site-specific protein modification methods, facilitating investigation of weak protein-protein interactions, host-pathogen interactions, spatiotemporal imaging of GTPase activity, etc. Using a combination of chemical and biological approaches, his lab has elucidated new mechanisms of autophagosome formation and Rab membrane targeting.