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[2011/11/18] University Faculty Distinguished Professor Yi-Ming Arthur Chen Received the 2011 National Innovation Award

University Faculty Distinguished Professor Yi-Ming Arthur Chen Received the 2011 National Innovation Award

[100/11/18]

University Faculty Distinguished Professor Yi-Ming Arthur Chen Received the 2011 National Innovation Award

On November 4, 2011- Professor Yi-Ming Arthur Chen of the AIDS Prevention and Research Center and Institute of Microbiology and Immunology received the 2011 National Innovation Award for his invention of the "Glycine N-methyltransferase (GNMT) animal model and use thereof". The 8th annual National Innovation Award event was organized by the Institute for Biotechnology and Medicine Industry. Both Vice president Hsiao and premier Wu attended the event.

Professor Chen's research demonstrated that GNMT is abundantly expressed in the liver cytosol, but is down-regulated in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) tissues. GNMT catalyzes the synthesis of sarcosine from glycine using S-adenosylmethionine as the methyl donor and plays an important role in the regulation of DNA methylation. GNMT interacts with environmental carcinogens (such as benzo[a]pyrene and aflatoxin B1) and alters the liver detoxification pathway and prevents DNA adducts formation and subsequent cytotoxicity.

      To study the role of GNMT in HCC development, Professor Chen's group generated a GNMT knockout (Gnmt-/-) mice and reported on their tendencies toward chronic hepatitis, glycogen storage, fatty liver, and HCC. Both male and female Gnmt-/- mice developed chronic hepatitis and hepatomegaly at the age of 4-11 weeks. In addition, female Gnmt-/- mice had a higher rate of developing glycogen storage disease and steatohepatitis than the male mice. We followed up the Gnmt-/- mice to 24 months old and showed that all female and half of male Gnmt-/- mice developed HCC. This Gnmt-/- mouse model is useful for drug screening and early biomarker development for fatty liver and HCC.

    Professor Chen's researches have been published in many important journals including Hepatology, International Journal of Cancer, Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research, Genomics, Proteomics-Clinical Applications, Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology. In addition, he has obtained patents from United States, mainland China and Taiwan for this invention.

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Dr. Chen received the 8th National Innovation Award.

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President Kung-Yee Liang (left), Dr. Chen and his parents.



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