Dr. LIU Lei was born at Chuzhou in July 1977. He obtained the BS degree from University of Science and Technology of China in 1995. In 2004 he was awarded with the PhD degree at Columbia University. He conducted postdoc research at Scripps Research Institute from 2004 to 2007. He joined Tsinghua University in 2007 and has been promoted to a full professor. His research interest focuses on the chemical synthesis of proteins. He is serving on the editorial boards of a number of academic journals such as J. Pept. Sci., ChemPlusChem, and Chin. Chem. Lett. He has received the Young Chemist Award, WuXi PharmaTech Life Science and Chemistry Award, and National Award for Youth in Science and Technology. He received National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars in 2012.
Protein Chemical Synthesis: Proteins are essential molecules of life. Chemical protein synthesis has been an important subject in synthetic chemistry for years. It not only provides a bottom-up approach for the exploration of molecular mechanisms in biochemistry, but also stimulates the development of technologies useful for the research on protein and peptide drugs. Dr. LIU Lei develops a new method of native chemical ligation of peptide hydrazides, which enables the chemical synthesis of proteins with high efficiency and practicality. Application of the hydrazide-based method has been demonstrated in the chemical synthesis of many important proteins such as human Cox17, plant cyclotides, and autophagosomal marker protein LC3-II.