Doctor in his 30s challenges protein mapping competition

Date: 12/05/2019 | Source: Pyongyang Times | Read original version at source

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There, Han Kun Sop (pictured) was highly appreciated.

Foreign scholars posted on the internet that the research findings of the Korean researcher at the University of Sciences are very interesting, his essays showing the DPRK’s level of biological development are best and the DPRK that entered the CASP for the first time emerged as winner.

Han Kun Sop in his thirties was born to a farmer’s family in Kumho district of South Hamgyong Province.

“My son as a child helped me with feeding pigs, ducks and rabbits as he was very fond of animals,” said Han’s mother.

Therefore, he majored in biology after enrolling at the University of Sciences.

He was especially interested in genetic and cell engineering.

He set himself the goal of blazing a trail in the new study of computational biology as a postgraduate student and later thrust himself into research into protein structure prediction that draws world attention.

A major component of all cells, protein is said to play a primary role in the manifestation of life phenomena and therefore elucidating its structure constitutes a key research project of life science.

Experts say that the experimental demonstration of the structure of one protein requires hundreds of thousands of euros and enormous labour.

So far, the structures of a very few number of proteins have been clarified experimentally and it is regarded as almost impossible to clear up the solid structures of so many proteins by the experimental method alone.

Han racked his brains with an ambition to become world champion in the field of protein structure prediction. And his painstaking effort was worthwhile.

He succeeded in establishing a new method of predicting local and regional characters of protein structure models, which marks one of the main stages in protein structure prediction. For the discovery he was awarded a doctorate in biology.

Last year he took part in the 13th CASP which was held online. During some 90-day long contest he predicted in an original way the exactitude of 14 640 protein structure models presented by the competition organizing committee and submitted the result within the set time. He also added two essays to the collection of essays of the 13th international event.

The organizing committee that examined the results sent an email to Han to invite him to a round-table talk of five persons who were appreciated as best.

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