Meet the people who make things happen!
Lorie Karnath

Lorie Karnath is the co-founder of The Explorers Museum. She is also a founding member of the Molecular Frontiers Foundation. Lorie also served as the 37th president of the renowned Explorers Club, the second woman to hold this position in the club’s 108-year old history. Lorie served for 3 terms (2009-2012) and during her tenure conceived and spearheaded the Club’s development campaigns, raising significant funding for the organization. During this period, Ms. Karnath also executed and oversaw the completion of a substantial restoration of the Club’s historic headquarters. Lorie participates on a number of international scientific and educational boards and has conceived and spearheaded scientific and educational symposia around the world. A lifelong explorer Lorie a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and was a founding member of the RGS Hong Kong. She also was elected a fellow of the Canadian Royal Geographical Society. Lorie has helped to establish a sanctuary for theWhite Stork in Northern Germany and has also been involved in the creation of a number of schools in Asia. Prior to her current activities within the scientific, educational and other non-profit realm, Lorie worked for a number of years in international finance and investment banking. She has lived and worked around the world and is the author of many books on science, exploration and the arts and is a contributor to numerous international publications. She received her MBA from INSEAD and received an honorary Ph.D. from Shenandoah University.

Per Thorén

Per Thorén earned his PhD in Physical chemistry at Chalmers University of Technology in 2003. His primary research area is in cellular delivery of macromolecules, but he has also worked on surfactants for solubilization of poorly soluble drugs. He he has been a part of Molecular Frontiers since it was formed in 2006, managing most of our activities.

At present, he is Chief Operating Officer(COO) of Molecular Frontiers and Project Manager for MoleClues.

Michael Khor
Director, Molecular Frontiers Singapore

Professor Khor is Director of Research Support Office (RSO) and Bibliometrics Analysis at NTU, Singapore since Oct 2011. He has previously held the position of Director of Research at NTU (2004-2008) and Deputy Director, Singapore-MIT Alliance (SMA) prior to joining the National Research Foundation (NRF) in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) as Director (Projects) in March 2008. He returned to NTU at end-2009 to take up the position of Associate Provost (Research) until end-Sept 2011. He has been invited as Visiting Professor by the National Defense Academy, Japan in 2001 and was invited as Guest Professor by Zhejiang University, PR China. Among other research awards he received are the Japan Science and Technology Agency (STA) Fellowship and the Japan National Institutes of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) Fellowship. He has served as President, Institute of Materials East Asia since 1996 and currently chairs the Electronics Application Division board of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IoM³).

Shuguang Zhang
Director, Molecular Frontiers USA

Shuguang Zhang is the Associate Director of the Center for Biomedical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  He received his Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular biology from University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) and was a recipient of Regent Fellowship and a Graduate Mentor Fellowship at UCSB.  He was a past American Cancer Society Fellow at MIT.  He discovered a self-assembling peptide system while working in molecular and structural biology with Alexander Rich at MIT.  This serendipitous discovery was selected to be one of the fifteen research achievements over last quart century at MIT.  He pursues actively on the various self-assembling peptide systems to develop a new class of biological materials including peptide matrix scaffold for tissue engineering, biological surface engineering for cell pattern formation, molecular switch, biological operating systems and surfactant peptide nanotubes.  He also works on problems to gain understanding of a class of protein conformational diseases, including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and the prion diseases (mad cow disease).  He holds three US patents and additional seven pending patents on the self-assembling peptide systems.

He is a Visiting Professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing, and Sichuan University in Chengdu, China.  He is member of AAAS, American Society of Biochemistry and molecular Biology, the Human Genome Organization Americas, the Protein Society, New York Academy of Sciences, The International Society for the Study of Origin of Life, and the honorary society of Sigma Xi. 

Andreas Mershin
Founder of the Molecular Frontiers Inquiry Prize

Andreas studied physics at Imperial College in London and earned his MS and PhD in physics from Texas A&M University. As a Sr. Postdoctoral Associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) he is researching biophotovoltaics and biochemical sensors. With a strong interest in popularizing science, he is a serial entrepreneur and a business idea competition winner, a multiple participant in the MIT 100K competition and a founding member and lead organizer of the "HBN Big Idea Competition". Andreas is now Lead Organizer of the Molecular Frontiers Inquiry Prize.

Helena Ledmyr
Editor, Science outreach coordinator for Sweden

Helena Ledmyr studied molecular biology at the Stockholm University in Sweden, and earned her Ph.D. in cardiovascular medicine at the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden, in 2004. She was recruited for Molecular Frontiers while she was working at the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences as an administrator and communications officer. Currently she holds a position as Development Officer at the International Neuroinformatics Coordinating Facility. 

She functions as an editor for and she helps organize the annual Molecular Frontiers symposium at the academy. She also produces communications materials for the Foundation.

Deborah Donnelly McLay
Outreach assistant

Deborah Donnelly-McLay is an international airline pilot, aeronautical science professor, and STEM advocate and mentor. Deborah is involved with various organizations to promote education to youth, including Molecular Frontiers Foundation, Rotary International, YMCA and Women in Aviation. Deborah was awarded 2012 UPS Pilot of the Year Award.

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