IAMS Research Fellow Receives 2020 MOST Outstanding Research Award

Jung-Chi Liao, Ph.D.,IAMS Research Fellow, has received the 2020 Taiwan Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) Outstanding Research Award in the field of Physics. This prestigious award is given to dedicated researchers with outstanding scientific and technological achievements in both basic and applied research.
Dr. Liao started his deep exploration of superresolution microscopy when he was a faculty at Columbia University more than 10 years ago. After joining the IAMS in 2014, he has continued to focus on primary cilium research and the study of other biological structures using superresolution microscopy. His major achievement during this period was the completion of a trilogy of superresolution studies on the centriole-cilium interface, including the transition zone (Scientific Reports 2015), distal appendages (DAPs) (Nature Communications 2018), and subdistal appendages (sDAPs) (eLife 2020). These studies are recognized as a structural foundation in the field of centriole-cilium study. Specifically, in his 2018 work, he led a team to the discovery of a novel structure, the distal appendage matrix, which plays an important role in gating transmembrane proteins. Because of the importance of these works, Dr. Liao has been an invited speaker at major conferences in his research field, including the ASCB Meeting, FASEB Meeting, EMBO Meeting, Biophysical Society Meeting, SPIE, and Cold Spring Harbor Asia Conference. In addition, his recent innovation in optoproteomics, which converts a microscope into a targeting machine to pick up proteins for analysis at the user’s wish, was awarded the 價創計畫, and a spin-off company has been formed to bring the proprietary platform for de novo spatial proteomics studies to the global biological community.

IAMS Optoproteomics Technology Wins the 17th Taiwan National Innovation Award

The optoproteomics technology developed by a team led by IAMS Research Fellow Dr. Jung-Chi Liao has won the 17th Taiwan National Innovation Award, with three IAMS members, Dr. Liao, Yi-De Chen, and Chih-Wei Chang as the awardees. The National Innovation Award is considered one of the most important indicators in recognizing outstanding research and development achievements as well as innovations from healthcare institutions and enterprises in the biotech industry of Taiwan.
During the award ceremony, Dr. Liao’s IAMS team and five other winning teams were selected to make a Showcase Pitch to a large audience comprised of private investors, corporate venture groups, and representatives from leading science and technology companies to seek new capital and explore strategic collaborations and partnership opportunities. During the presentation, Dr. Liao explained the principle of the breakthrough and how the system can turn a high-content microscope into a novel spatial proteomics tool that can harvest cellular and subcellular components from selected cells or tissue regions. It is expected that the optoproteomics technology will be used to discover new protein biomarkers for disease mechanism studies and drug development.