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Ursula Keller, Nenad Ban, and Viola Vogel appointed members of US National Academy of Sciences

Date Announced: 05 May 2021

The American National Academy of Sciences has awarded membership to the three ETH Zurich professors.

Pictured: Nenad Ban, Ursula Keller, and Viola Vogel. (Photographs: ETH Zurich).

Zurich, Switzerland -- Admission to the American National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is a great honour. The society includes almost 3,000 of the world's leading natural scientists, mainly those with American nationality.

A good sixth of the members are international members with foreign citizenship. At its 2021 annual meeting, the NAS admitted 120 new members. These included the structural biologist Nenad Ban, the physicist Ursula Keller, and the biophysicist Viola Vogel, all professors at ETH Zurich, as international members.

Ban decodes the three-​dimensional atomic structure of biochemical molecules and specialises in large molecules and molecular aggregates. He has elucidated the three-​dimensional structure of the cellular protein synthesis machinery, the ribosome.

Keller’s research involves ultra-​fast laser physics. She investigates physical processes that occur on ultra-​short time scales (during attoseconds – a trillionth of a second) and develops the necessary laser measurement technology.

Vogel focuses on the field of mechanobiology, in which she investigates how biological cells use proteins as mechanochemical switches. She not only looks at the biochemical aspects of proteins and their functions, but also at their mechanical aspects.


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