čas: 17.9.2021 23:45:23
Obnovit | RAW
Prague was the intended location for the conference and the organisation was led by the University of Chemistry and Technology Prague and supported by artificial intelligence research and development company GoodAI.
Many congratulations to a team of authors lead by Denisa Lizoňová for having their work titled “Multilobed Magnetic Liposomes Enable Remotely Controlled Collection, Transport, and Delivery of Membrane-Soluble Cargos to Vesicles and Cells” feature on the front cover of ACS Applied Bio Materials. The work described new multi-compartmental liposome structures that can transport both hydrophilic and lipophilic molecular payload by means of magnetic navigation. Crucially, the paper demonstrates the ability of these structures to deliver membrane-soluble substances to cancer cells with a high efficiency.
The head of our Department of Chemical Engineering, prof. Ing. František Štěpánek, Ph.D., is currently a visiting Fulbright Scholar at Rutgers University, New Jersey. Watch on a public talk "Trends and challenges of industrial pharmacy today" as a part of Czech Science Café New York.
Student of the second year of master's degree Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering Lukáš Šatura has - as a sole representative of UCT Prage - participated in student competition "SVOČ 2021" in mathematics and physics organized by the Faculty of Nuclear Sciences and Physical Engineering CTU Prague and with his work "Thermodynamically Consistent Modelling of Phase Separation Process" has placed third in section "Applied mathematics - numerical analysis and mathematical models of dynamics". Congratulations and all the best in your future career!
Many congratulations to our PhD student Martin Balouch on his publication “In-silico screening of drug candidates for thermoresponsive liposome formulations”, which has been selected for the front journal cover of Molecular Systems Design and Engineering, published by the Royal Society of Chemistry. The work, which was carried out in collaboration between VŠCHT Praha and Palacký University in Olomouc and supported by The PARC, reports on a computational methodology for the selection of active pharmaceutical ingredients that are suitable for encapsulation into liposomes based on stability, capacity and permeation rate. This computational methodology has the potential to accelerate the development process of new medicines, and improve the efficacy and bioavailability of active pharmaceutical ingredients via delivery in liposomal formulations. Well done all authors for this important piece of work!
“Our achievements rocked science in 2020. I am proud of every student in The Parc and I would like to thank all the supervisors from Zentiva and the academia for the student’s supervision and enthusiasm to solve current challenges in pharmaceutical science together. The Parc´s research clearly addresses the key challenges the pharma industry is facing today and its results are directly applied in the new products development and manufacturing” – said Ondrej Dammer, The Parc’s Operational Director.
For the third time, The Parc doctoral students were awarded The Parc Awards in two categories. Tereza Boleslavská won The Student Choice Award for her project on “Development of biorelevant in vitro dissolution method” while the second Student award went to Jan Jirát for “Crystal design and crystallization process development” and the third Student prize was awarded to Jakub Petřík for his work on “Forced degradation study system development”. The Expert Choice Award went to Jiří Kolář for his work “Mathematical modeling of unit operations in pharmaceutical formulation processes”.
Prof. František Štěpánek, The Parc’s Scientific Director commented: “I would like to congratulate the winners and all the students for their 2020 research studies and results. At The Parc we continue to provide a bridge between excellent basic research in pharmaceutical sciences and its translation to real pharmaceutical products that can be clinically tested, registered, and manufactured. Through collaboration with the best academic institutions across the EU our platform provides its Ph.D. students with the opportunity to gain first-hand experience of both academic and industrial R&D environment, thus broadening their future career prospects. It is great to acknowledge that The Parc alumni launch successful careers not only in the pharmaceutical industry and academic institutions across Europe, but this year also the first technological start-up company was founded by one of our graduates.”
Zentiva strongly believes that supporting students by bridging the gap between theoretical science and what happens in the real-life in pharma will have a valuable impact on the future careers of young people, especially members of the Z generation in the Czech Republic. The high quality of the students’ program and its practical benefits were also recognized by Prime Minister Andrej Babiš during his visit to The Parc last September.
“From the superb quality of research receiving this year´s awards, it is clearly visible that the Parc is already fulfilling its mission to build a strong foundation for further growth of the pharmaceutical industry in the Czech Republic. The unique combination of world-class academic education with practical hands-on industrial and business experience in The Parc clearly shows a functional and successful example of how to speed up the transfer of academic research into practical applications in the industry, boost the research and development activities in the companies and prepare the next generation of scientists and engineers to be ready at their graduation to tackle the industrial challenges of the future. The Parc shows one of the ways we can really deliver on the “country for future” strategy of the Czech Republic” - summarized Pavel Sebek, Zentiva's Development Director and one of the founders of The Parc.
About The Parc
Initiated by Zentiva, The Parc was created in association with three academic partners: the University of Chemistry and Technology Prague; the Faculty of Science of Charles University; and the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the Czech Academy of Sciences. This highly successful initiative has brought rising talent together with leading pharmaceutical and academic experts, all working to accelerate innovation in drug research & development.
The Parc provides world-class academic education combined with practical hands-on industrial and business experience under the leadership of scientists, engineers, and managers both from academia and the pharmaceutical industry. It enables students to gain graduate-level training in pharmaceutical sciences bridging chemistry, pharmaceutical technology, bio pharmacy, and clinical research. Results of the students’ research are frequently directly implemented in real-world products launched to the market to help patients. Collaborating with academic partners across Europe, The Parc also offers secondments for students and research experience exchanges supervised by top academic scientists.
More information about The Parc can be found on www.theparc.eu.
Zentiva is a producer of high-quality affordable medicines serving patients in Europe and beyond. With a dedicated team of more than 4,500 people and a network of production sites - including flagship sites in Prague, Bucharest, and Ankleshwar - Zentiva strives to be the champion of branded and generic medicines in Europe to better support people’s daily healthcare needs.
At Zentiva it is our aspiration that healthcare should be a right and not a privilege. More than ever, people need better access to high-quality affordable medicines and healthcare. We work in partnership with physicians, pharmacists, wholesalers, regulators, and governments to provide the everyday solutions that we all depend on.
Source: Zentiva Press Release
Ivan Řehoř: Mikrorogel robots
Jitka Čejková - Robot 100: Sto rozumů (book)
Even in these difficult times, we decided not to break our tradition and held the regular The Parc symposium! We had 29 presenting PhD students, this time we were also joined by potential future applicants and representatives from the Pharmaceutical Faculty of Charles University, Faculty of Science of Masaryk University and Pharmaceutical Faculty of Masaryk University. We thank all the presenters and hope our guests had an enlightening experience! On the photos, you can see some of our members in their native environments...
Artificial life (commonly abbreviated Alife) is an interdisciplinary field that can be most briefly described as the study of life as it could be as opposed to the biology, which studies life as we know it here on Earth. This is a fascinating field where topics range from artificial intelligence and robotics to the chemical synthesis of artificial cells to almost philosophical considerations (what exactly is life?). In the Alife community, one encounters computer scientists, robotics researchers, physicists, chemists, biologists and also representatives from humanities disciplines and even artists. ALIFE conferences have been held annually since the 1980s, when the first conference was hosted by Christopher Langton, one of the founders of the field, in Los Alamos, United States.
Originally, this year’s conference was supposed to take place in Montreal, Canada, but due to the current situation and limited opportunities to travel, it was moved online to become the first fully virtual ALIFE conference. Next year the University of Chemistry and Technology, Prague (UCT Prague), will organize the conference. I am optimistic about the future, so we are planning ALIFE 2021 as a hybrid conference. This means that the conference will take place in Prague but that those who will not be able to in-person will be able to participate virtually. However, it will not be the first hybrid ALIFE conference: already starting in 2019 for the Newcastle (U.K.) event, scientists from the ALIFE community could choose whether to attend in-person or to choose a more environmentally friendly option by attending lectures online. We believe that the hybrid format will eventually become common for all conferences.
Although artificial life does not have much of a tradition in the Czech Republic (and currently only I and a handful of CIIRC scientists are supporters of this field), next year’s event will be the second international conference on artificial life to take place in the country. The first, ECAL (The 6th European Conference on Artificial Life), was organized by Jozef Kelemen in 2001. The ALIFE conference will therefore “return” to Prague after 20 years and its theme this time will be the celebration of the hundredth anniversary of Čapek’s R.U.R. (Rossum’s Universal Robots), source of the globally used word “robot”, which first appeared in this work.
Anyone who has read Čapek’s play or seen it in a theatre knows that Rossum’s robots were not metal monsters, as many people imagine robots imagine, but were made of chemically prepared matter that behaved as if it were alive. The play states: “Nature has found only one way to organize living matter. However, there is another way, simpler, more malleable and faster, which nature has not encountered at all.” With a little exaggeration, it could be said that Karel Čapek formulated some of the ideas and goals of the scientific field of artificial life as early as 1920. In R.U.R., we find many topics that scientists are still dealing with today: whether it is the processes of synthesis of artificial tissues and organs, questions surrounding evolution and reproduction, the ability to imitate the behaviour of human beings and to show at least signs of intelligence or consciousness. R.U.R. also outlines societal issues related to globalization, the division of power and wealth, religion, and the status of women. Basically, almost every scientist could show an example of how R.U.R. opens one of the still unanswered questions in their area of investigation. And that’s exactly what I did! At first I decided to recall how this hundred-year-old play is related to chemistry, but later I began to relate individual ideas to artificial life and other fields. I contacted my colleagues and acquaintances and asked them to read the Čapek's original R.U.R. (especially abroad, many had no idea about this work) and then to write their commentaries about it. And so the book Robot 100 was created.
From last autumn to January this year, I collected a total of 86 short chapters and several illustrations from 100 personalities—not only scientists, but also fiction writers, journalists, athletes, and artists. About a third are Czechs; the other authors come from all over the world. If we look at it like the Olympics symbol with its five interlocking rings, there are representatives from all five continents in the book. You will be able to find out who and what they contributed to the book on the website www.robot100.cz and social media. From now until November, the details about the book Robot 100 will be gradually released. And the book itself will see the light of day in November 2020, exactly one hundred years after the book edition of Čapek’s R.U.R. For now, I will tell you that the author of the cover of Robot 100 is the well-known Czech illustrator Jonáš Ledecký.
The Czech version of Robot 100 will be published by us at the UCT Prague Press. UCT Prague is the largest chemistry oriented university in the Czech Republic, which focuses not only on teaching and research in chemistry, chemical technology, biochemistry, biotechnology, and materials engineering, but also gives us, researchers, the ability to explore relatively new fields such as artificial life, as mentioned above. The UCT Prague Press, headed by Ing. Eva Dibuszová, PhD, is the only specialized publishing house in the Czech and Slovak Republics that systematically publishes chemical literature. In addition to coursepacks and textbooks, the publishing house also publishes conference proceedings and books for the general public.
It is terrific that our university’s publishing house has included Robot 100 in its publishing plan for this year. I am glad that, here at UCT Prague, we will be able to commemorate Čapek’s original concept: that his R.U.R robots originated by chemical means, and that for the first time, the word “robot” was used essentially for a chemical invention, albeit only a fictitious one. However, we are not the only ones planning to celebrate the centenary of the word “robot”. I am collaborating, for example, with Zdeněk Vacek, director of the Karel Čapek Memorial, where various events are planned in this context for autumn 2020. In January 2021, Jiří Dědeček and Jaroslav Veis will hold a several-day conference at the Archa Theater to celebrate 100 years of R.U.R. Some other authors and I will give lectures at events for the general public, especially during November’s “Night of Scientists”. I collaborate with Jana Horáková from Masaryk University in Brno, who wrote an amazing book, Robot as Robot, about R.U.R. from the theatre studies perspective. And the highlight of all this will be the ALIFE international conference, which will take place in Prague in summer. And at that time, the English version of Robot 100 will be published.
22 teachers from our department spent two half days out of Prague to intensively discuss about topics related to education and research at our Department of Chemical Engineering.
This year master students visited three companies only virtually. MS Teams platform was used for the group meeting with the absolvents of our department and representatives of Evonik (Dr. Robert Jahn), Zentiva and The Parc (Dr. Jiří Dohnal, Dr. Pavel Kovačík and Dr. David Smrčka) and Škoda (Dr. František Plát and his colleagues).
Many congratulations to the glucan team from Chemical robotics laboratory for being awarded a national patent on a new process for drug encapsulation by spray drying. The patent titled “Method of producing composite beta-glucan particles with incorporated poorly water soluble drug, pharmaceutical preparation and use thereof” by inventors Gabi Ruphuy, Petra Šalamúnová, Ivan Saloň, Jarda Hanuš and František Štěpánek has been registered under no. CZ 308357.