Bio21’s Dr Stanley Xie receives the Federation of Asian and Oceanian Biochemists and Molecular Biologists (FAOBMB) Young Scientist Award  

Congratulations to Bio21’s Dr Stanley Xie on receiving the Federation of Asian and Oceanian Biochemists and Molecular Biologists (FAOBMB) Young Scientist Award.  

Stanley completed his PhD in 2016 at the University of Melbourne under the supervision of Professor Leann Tilley at Bio21. His PhD research focused on the molecular basis for artemisinin action and resistance in the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum.  

His research into artemisinin led him to make discoveries about the role of the proteosome in the malaria parasite and how artemisinin works to block it. With the rise of artemisinin resistance, there is a great need to find new drugs to treat malaria. Stanley has worked with Japanese pharmaceutical giant, Takeda Pty Ltd and Swiss-based not-for-profit organisation, Medicines for Malaria (MMV) to identify cancer drugs that target the human proteasome, with the aim of testing their effectiveness against the malarial proteasome.  

The FAOBMB website states

“In the past 5 years, Stanley’s post-doctoral research aims to translate his basic research findings into pre-clinical development of potential antimalarial drugs.”  

“He has worked with the Japanese pharmaceutical giant, Takeda Pty Ltd and Swiss-based not-for-profit organisation, Medicines for Malaria (MMV).”  

“Stanley travelled to Takeda Boston and worked to discover a new parasite-specific proteasome inhibitor to be used in tandem with artemisinin. In addition, he also collaborated with GSK Pty Ltd to identify potent and selective inhibitors of the parasite proteasome from GSK’s collection of proprietary compounds. In 2018, he relocated to the GSK Tres Cantos Open Labs and worked in Spain for half a year. Stanley has worked in both industry and academia to develop small molecule inhibitors through High Throughput Screens and Hit-to-Lead phases to treat malaria.” 

''This award means so much to me and I am deeply grateful for the recognition of my work by FAOBMB. I am excited at the prospects of further investigating drug candidates that we have identified against malaria, that target the proteasome and aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase, in pre-clinical studies, to ultimately test their effectiveness in clinical trials,” said Stanley. 

The website reads: 

“The Federation of Asian and Oceanian Biochemists and Molecular Biologists (FAOBMB) was the first regional association in biochemistry to focus on its promotion and development in the Asian and Oceanian regions."

“Since its founding in 1972, the FAOBMB has developed steadily, playing an important catalytic role in stimulating life sciences, technology transfer and entrepreneurship. FAOBMB works closely with its constituent members (national societies in the region) and IUBMB to advance research, teaching and applications of biochemistry and molecular biology. There are currently 21 constituent members representing more than 20,000 active scientists, from Australia, Bangladesh, China, Hawaii, India, Indonesia, Iran, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and Viet Nam.” 

The Young Scientist Award is a highly regarded international prize and a great honour.