Key consultancy role for Professor Anne Osbourn recognises “immense contribution”

Professor Anne Osbourn (FRS, OBE) has been appointed as a consultant Professor of Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU).

Professor Kexuan Tang, from the Department of Plant Science at SJTU praised Professor Osbourn’s “immense contributions” to both science and education and said, “This recognition reflects Anne’s efforts in strengthening the international collaboration between UK and China on fundamental research.”

Dr Zhenhua Liu, a former postdoctoral researcher in Professor Osbourn’s group and now an associate professor at the Department of Plant Science in SJTU, said, “Besides her remarkable contribution to plant science, Professor Osbourn is truly inspirational and distinguished in establishing SAW (Science, Art & Writing), a science education programme engaging with creative writing and arts for young children. SAW is now popular globally, including in China, the US and many other countries.”

SJTU is a major research university based in Shanghai. Established more than 120 years ago, it is one of China’s oldest universities and is consistently ranked among the world’s top academic institutions.

Professor Osbourn’s research is focused on plant natural product biosynthesis. Her discovery that biosynthetic pathways are organised in clusters in plant genomes like ‘beads on a string’ has accelerated the ability to find new biological pathways and chemistries of potential importance for the development of drugs and other useful compounds.

“It is great honour to be appointed a consultant Professor of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, and to be able to continue to build connectivity with our very talented colleagues in China,” she said.

Professor Osbourn is a leading contributor to the success of CEPAMS (Centre of Excellence for Plant and Microbial Science), a partnership between the John Innes Centre and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

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