Global recognition for young scientist

Asst Prof Chen is the only Singapore-based researcher to be inducted into the EMBO Young Investigator Programme this year

Assistant Professor Polly Leilei Chen from the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine and the Cancer Science Institute of Singapore at NUS is the only Singapore-based researcher to be inducted into the prestigious European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) Young Investigator Programme this year.

The Programme identifies recent group leaders with a proven record of scientific excellence and offers them a host of benefits during their four-year tenure, including funding support, training in leadership skills and responsible research practices, use of core facilities at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg, Germany, as well as mentorship and networking opportunities. 

Asst Prof Chen, a recipient of the NUS Young Investigator Award in 2014 and the NUS President Assistant Professorship in 2015, leads a team studying epigenetic mechanisms such as ribonucleic acid (RNA) editing and its role in cancer development.  

“As a young independent investigator, I am personally and passionately committed to becoming a world expert in RNA editing in cancer. Findings from my research have the potential to directly lead to new insights into the etiology of tumorigenesis, further providing useful targets for early diagnosis and helping to develop RNA-based therapeutics, ultimately making a difference in the lives of cancer patients…” said Asst Prof Chen.

Asst Prof Chen joins 25 other life science researchers from 10 countries who will receive support from EMBO during the foundation of their first independent laboratory. This year, the EMBO Young Investigator Programme received 195 eligible applications. Of the 13 per cent that were successful, 42 per cent are women researchers. 

See press release.