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Our faculty hosted a lecture by Nobel Prize winner in Chemistry Prof. J.M. Lehn

On Wednesday, 26 June 2024, our faculty welcomed a rare long-time friend of Czech chemists and scientists of other disciplines, Prof. Jean-Marie Lehn, winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1987. He gave a very inspiring lecture in the Large Geological Auditorium, in which he clearly and comprehensibly explained and documented the principles of Constitutional Dynamic Chemistry with numerous examples.
From the left: Prof. RNDr. Jiří Vohlídal, CSc., Prof. Jean M. Lehn, Assoc. Prof. RNDr. Ing. Vladimír Krylov, Veronique Debord-Lazaro, French Attaché for Science and Universities. Ph.D. Pfoto: Jakub Horák

Lehn is the ideological leader of progressive interdisciplinary research on the laws that enable and control the gradual spontaneous grouping of covalent molecules by non-covalent bonds (interactions) or labile covalent bonds into larger and more complex units of defined composition and defined structure that "can" respond to external stimuli (temperature, pressure, environment, electrical, optical and other stimuli) by defined changes in their structure and composition. Basically, it is about learning the basic laws of the dynamic processes that are highly likely to be "behind" the origin and evolution of life on Earth.

Photo: Jakub Horák

Prof. Lehn gave a very inspiring lecture on exactly this topic in our almost fully occupied Large Geology Lecture Hall, in which he clearly and comprehensibly explained and documented the principles of Constitutional Dynamic Chemistry with numerous examples. He showed examples of spontaneous responses of complex systems (specific variations in their structure and composition) in response to internal or external stimuli, which make these systems adapt to new conditions. This concept leads to an understanding of the mechanisms of evolution from simple molecules to systems of increasing complexity, and hence to living organisms, giving rise to terms such as Adaptive Chemistry and Evolutionary Chemistry, among others.

Photo: Jakub Horák

In the afternoon, Prof. Lehn discussed their research with our scientific and pedagogical staff and really gave them some inspiring and interesting insights.

On Friday, June 28th, Professor Lehn, along with two other Nobel laureates from France, Jules Hoffmann and Alain Aspect, attended the ceremonial 31st annual French Embassy Awards in Prague, honoring Czech doctoral students who competed this year in seven different scientific disciplines. In the late afternoon and evening, all three Nobel laureates appeared at the Estates Theatre, where, as Jean-Marie Lehn notes, the spirit of W.A. Mozart still lingers, having premiered his opera Don Giovanni there. In the third edition of the "Sounds of Science" series organized by the French Embassy in Prague, moderated by D. Stach from Czech Television, a dialogue unfolded between science represented by the Nobel laureates and music represented by outstanding performances of Czech musicians.

Published: Jul 01, 2024 12:30 PM

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