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Cuba, Brazil, Argentina Scientists Win Chemistry Award For Women

  • Scientists Clarissa Piccinin (L), Hilda Garay (C), and Marta Litter (R), 2021.

    Scientists Clarissa Piccinin (L), Hilda Garay (C), and Marta Litter (R), 2021. | Photo: Twitter/ @UJCdeCuba @cenmag @RadioUNNE997

Published 11 November 2021

The judges were so impressed with the nominations' quality that they decided to confer special awards, Chemical & Engineering News pointed out. 

At a virtual event to be held on Nov. 16, the American Chemical Society (ACS) and the Latin American Federation of Chemical Associations (FLAQ) will honor scientists Clarissa Piccinin (Brasil), Hilda Garay (Cuba), and Marta Litter (Argentina) with the inaugural Latin American Women in Chemistry Award.  


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With this recognition, the ACS and FLAW seek to promote diversity and gender equity in Latin America’s chemistry scientific research and industry. There were almost 80 nominees in three categories: 7 for Industry Leader, 34 for Academic Leader, and 37 for Emerging Leader in Chemistry.

"The first edition of this award has far exceeded our expectations. The judges were so impressed with the quality of the nominations that they decided to confer special awards. Latin America has abundant scientific talent," Chemical & Engineering News Editor-in-Chief Bibiana Campos stated.

Piccinin is the winner in the "Emerging Leader in Chemistry" category, which recognizes under-45-years-old outstanding scientists who have earned a Ph.D. in the last ten years. She conducted several investigations about the physical properties of ionic liquids and their application as biomaterials.

Garay, a specialist at the Cuba’s Center of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (CIGB), won the Industry Leader category for participating in the peptide CIGB-258 development. This farmaceutical product has anti-inflammatory properties and was granted emergency use authorization in Cuba and other Latin American countries to treat COVID-19 patients.

Finally, Argentine Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET) member Litter won the Academic Leader category for making outstanding research contributions with her studies on advanced reduction-oxidation processes of metals.

“I am delighted that FLAQ and ACS have partnered to present this award every two years. These regional sister societies’ collaboration has been a long time coming, but it is reassuring to know that it has come to promote gender equity,” Campos concluded, recalling that nominations for the second edition will begin in June 2022.

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