Monday, July 16, 2012

Wow, that's some interesting prose

I assume when professors are asked to comment on another professor's work, they have to walk a fine line of saying something complimentary, without sounding gushing or damning with faint praise. In this week's C&EN (article by Stu Borman), Professor Erick Carreira doesn't shy away from strong language when praising Professor Paul Wender's recent work on bryostatin analogues that can cure dormant HIV:
“The tour de force complex synthesis of bryologs is a brilliant realization of the goals of function-oriented synthesis,” says synthetic chemist Erick M. Carreira of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich. “This strategy brings the viral terrorists out of hiding, where they can be targeted for destruction.
I'm surprised that there wasn't some reference to synthetic Predator drone strikes or something.  


  1. Wender came to UIUC a couple months back and made the comment, "If you want to fly, you don't make birds, you make fighter jets" in reference to his "bryologs"

  2. Wow.......

  3. I use the term tour de force when describing my work every time I present at a group meeting.

    After all, here in pharma, we're making fighter jets, no, fighter bombers each and every day...

  4. Do you think that the louder you proclaim the important accomplishments of your science that more money or fame will come your way? Does anyone actually hear it when shouting hyperbole in a vacuum?

    This might have sounded better if a knowledgeable MD, not a chemist, had said it. However, maybe it was impossible to find a MD stupid enough to make such a statement.

    I have just lived too long, I guess. This is self-promotional BS claiming a cure for this disease or that disease is just around the corner has been repeated so often in my 45 years in the business; I am amazed we are still dying of any obnoxious diseases these days.

  5. Wow, comparing HIV to Al Qaeda...perhaps this is a good strategy to secure research funding from DOD or DHS. (This doesn't make sense though, since Carreira left the US a while ago).

    Seriously, how much ego-stroking do academics need? Perhaps monstrosities such as Eisai's haleven have started a trend of developing ugly-a$$ molecules as therapeutics. The tough job market for freshly minted chemists (even among alumni of elites such as Wender) is sadly compelling professors to over-promise and under-deliver.

  6. Maybe he's trying to position himself as the science czar in Syria after the rebellion is put down? I keep hearing noises from them about hunting down terrorists lately after bringing them out of hiding in some housing district by destroying it with mortars. And Carreira has lots of dictatorial experience running a very tight ship from his base in the Alps, so I think he will do well as the next Baath party science boss. Failing that, there is always KAUST.

  7. Viral terrorists out of hiding? That's retarded.


looks like Blogger doesn't work with anonymous comments from Chrome browsers at the moment - works in Microsoft Edge, or from Chrome with a Blogger account - sorry! CJ 3/21/20