George P. Smith

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2018

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Travels From: USA

George P. Smith is available for virtual keynotes and webinars. Please complete the form or contact one of our agents to inquire about the fees for virtual engagements. Please note: the fee range listed above is for in-person engagements.

Nobel Prize Speaker George P. Smith
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    George P. Smith

    The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2018

    Speaker Fee Range: Please inquire for fees

    Travels From: USA

    George P. Smith is available for virtual keynotes and webinars. Please complete the form or contact one of our agents to inquire about the fees for virtual engagements. Please note: the fee range listed above is for in-person engagements.

    George P. Smith Speaker Biography

    George P. Smith was cited for ‘harnessing the power of evolution’ through his work with bacteriophages – viruses that infect bacteria – to discover proteins with new functions.

    He shared one half of the 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Sir Gregory Winter, for their related work on phage display, the other half going to Frances Arnold for her breakthrough in directed evolution of enzymes.

    Phages infect and reproduce in bacteria. Smith began his Nobel-winning work in 1984, when he realised that the filamentous family of phages could tolerate a great diversity of guest peptides (stretches of extra amino acids unrelated to the phage) genetically fused to one of the proteins on the outer surface of the phage particle. Using molecular biology methodology already current at the time, it would be possible to construct large “libraries” consisting of millions or billions of phage clones, each displaying a different guest peptide on the phage surface.

    In the six years that followed the initial publication in 1985, a number of labs including Smith’s validated and expanded the phage-display idea, and it has continued to be enriched in creative ways by numerous scientists, including Smith’s co-laureate Gregory Winter, ever since. Smith frequently argues that phage display exemplifies how scientific discoveries and innovations emerge from global scientific communities, not primarily from individuals.

    George P. Smith Keynote Topics

    Evolution – the adaption of species to different environments – has created an enormous diversity of life. George Smith has used the same principles – genetic change and selection – to develop proteins that solve humankind’s chemical problems. In 1985, he developed an elegant method known as phage display, where a bacteriophage – a virus that infects bacteria with its genes – can be used to evolve new proteins. This method has led to new pharmaceuticals, for example.

    George P. Smith Speaking Videos

    George P. Smith: Nobel Lecture in Chemistry 2018
    Interview with George P. Smith, Nobel Laureate in Chemistry 2018