Roman Jerala received Grand Pregl Award
Prof. dr. Roman Jerala is the recipient of the Grand Pregl Award in 2021, awarded by the National Institute of Chemistry (NIC) for outstanding achievements in the field of basic or applied research that can be compared to achievements on a global scale.
With his work in the field of life sciences, prof. dr. Roman Jerala mapped Slovenian science on the world map and, as the head of the Department of Synthetic Biology and Immunology, greatly contributed to the development and reputation of NIC. Prof. Roman Jerala is a pioneer of synthetic biology in Slovenia and one of the leading synthetic biologists in the world. His research includes the implementation of logic and information processing in mammalian cells, the development of new ways of gene regulation, which have already been used in his group in preclinical therapeutic applications. His most original achievement is the discovery of a new principle of building protein structures based on dimeric coiled-coil helices as modular building blocks (i.e. protein origami). It is a completely new principle of protein folding, based on the mathematical rules of graph theory and developed as part of the ERC Advanced grant. Due to his scientific achievements, prof. Jerala was elected an EMBO member, is also an associate member of The Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts. At the same time, with his broad knowledge, he tirelessly explains to the public the current situation regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, and in this way contributes to the trust and reputation of science.