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Materials Research Institute



Seminar - On the Origins of Biological Metabolism

Image: Joseph Moran
Joseph Moran

Date: 24 June 2020   Time: 15:00 - 16:30

We welcome Professor Joseph Moran who will talk about the emergence of life, specifically biological metabolism, purely from a chemical systems perspective.

About this Event
Biological metabolism exhibits signs that it may have started as a self-organized chemical system. The need for continuity between prebiotic chemistry and biochemistry mean that the two probably still resemble each other in key ways. Our aim is to infer the conditions that produced the initial self-organized system. To do this, we are recreating subsets of the metabolic network in the lab under purely chemical conditions. Once a number of key sub-systems are in hand, we hope to be able to pinpoint the non-equilibrium environment that gave life its start. This talk will discuss our progress towards this goal.

Joseph Moran is a Professor at the Institut de Science et d’Ingénierie Supramoléculaires of the University of Strasbourg & CNRS. After completing his PhD. studies in organic chemistry (Prof. André Beauchemin, Ottawa), he took postdoctoral positions to learn chemical biology (Prof. John Pezacki, NRC Canada) and transition metal catalysis (Prof. Michael Krische, Texas). He moved to France as an assistant professor in 2012 and was promoted to full professor in 2018. His research interests include prebiotic systems chemistry, supramolecular catalysis, and the use of vibrational strong coupling in organic chemistry. He is a recipient of the ERC Starting Grant (2015), the Jean Normant prize of the French Chemical Society (2018) and was named to C&EN’s Talented 12 (2018).

Location:  Online - please register at the link below
Contact:  Dr Stoyan Smoukov