A Chinese academic is travelling to the University of Edinburgh to study the biological chemistry of gold drugs. Dr Juan Zou from Beijing has been granted Pounds 33,669 for a travelling research fellowship to Edinburgh' department of chemistry by the Wellcome Trust.
Gold has been used in China for centuries as a way of treating a variety of conditions. Some difficult cases of rheumatoid arthritis are treated with gold compounds, in the form of tablets or injections. The molecular basis for the biological activity is unknown. The research may eventually lead to the design of new gold compounds, useful in the treatment of diseases such as cancer.