On the morning of March 25th, Professor Michael Houghton, winner of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine and director of the Li Ka Shing Institute of Virology at the University of Alberta, gave an academic lecture entitled "Controlling the hepatitis C virus pandemic" to the teachers and students of WMU. Professor Song Weihong, Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Science and dean of the Alberta Institute of Wenzhou Medical University, Professor Brenda Hemmelgarn, dean of the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry at the University of Alberta and foreign dean of the Alberta Institute of Wenzhou Medical University, Professor Dennis Kunimoto and Professor Xin-min Li, vice deans of the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry at the University of Alberta, attended the lecture. The on and offline lecture was hosted by Academician Song Weihong and Professor Xin-min Li.
President Li Xiaokun gave a video speech. He said that Wenzhou Medical University and the University of Alberta had a solid foundation for cooperation and the cooperation in running schools had achieved fruitful results. In 2020, with the full support of the University of Alberta, we successfully established the Alberta Institute of Wenzhou Medical University, the first Chinese-foreign cooperative education institution focusing on clinical medicine in China. At present, the first batch of 57 outstanding undergraduates enrolled in the Alberta Institute all enjoy colorful campus life and a strong academic atmosphere for study. Our university is committed to cultivating students into innovative professionals with a global perspective and critical thinking. He believes that WMU students will get in close touch with leading scientists through this lecture and be inspired to devote more passion to study and scientific research in the future.
Professor Michael Houghton talked about how he and his team had overcome many difficulties step by step in the past 40 years, and finally discovered the genome of the hepatitis C virus, unlocking its genetic code. This discovery made a great contribution to the rapid development of antiviral drugs against hepatitis C, as well as the diagnostic tests and vaccines. He said that the hepatitis C virus vaccine had entered the late stage of clinical trial and would help prevent the spread of this deadly disease in the future. Professor Michael Houghton also encouraged WMU students to keep up with the latest cutting-edge technologies in various fields and actively think about how to apply these technologies to their study and scientific research.
Academician Song Weihong presided over the “question and answer” session. Students participated in this session enthusiastically. The questions included how to overcome bottlenecks and difficulties encountered in scientific research, how to balance scientific research and life, and how to prepare for a research career. Each question was answered in detail.