Professor Anant Parekh has been invited to deliver the Public Lecture as Honorary Guest Speaker at the 108th Indian Science Congress, due to take place from 3 - 7 January 2021. The event, held by the Indian Science Congress Association (ISCA), is a premier conference in Asia, widely broadcast throughout the continent. Many prominent Indian and international scientists, including Nobel Laureates, attend and speak at the Congress. Last year's Guest speakers were Nobel Laureates Ada Yonath (2009) and Stefan Hell (2014), and the former Director of the US National Science Foundation Subra Suresh.
Professor Parekh is Professor of Cell Physiology, Director of DPAG's Centre for Integrative Physiology and Fellow of Merton College. He was elected member of Academia Europaea in 2002, Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2012 and Fellow of the Royal Society in 2019. He is the recipient of the 2002 Wellcome Prize in Physiology, 2009 India International Foundation Prize, 2012 GL Brown Prize from the UK Physiological Society and 2019 Batsheva de Rothschild Prize. He also sits on the editorial boards of the Journal of Physiology, Cell Calcium and BMC Physiology.
Professor Parekh has produced a significant body of research into cell communication that has deepened our understanding of the significance of calcium signals, including the role they play in controlling many important biological functions such as energy production and how aberrant calcium signals can contribute to ill health. His work is also leading to the development of new drugs that target calcium channels for therapeutic use, particularly in asthma.
Science in India is flourishing. India has traditionally been very strong in Mathematics and Physics, but over the past few decades significant progress has been made in the Life Sciences. There are a growing number of internationally competitive research institutes such as TiFR and NCBS. In addition, there are several strong universities that produce top quality graduates and postgraduates. I have been fortunate in having several excellent postdocs from India. Speaking at the Congress is a great opportunity to interact with excellent young scientists, meet new colleagues and promote both DPAG and Oxford University. - Professor Anant Parekh FRS