How chemistry helps us

Javier García, professor at the Rafael del Pino Foundation and president-elect of IUPAC, explains how chemistry helps us to fight against diseases. His talk, which will take place on the Youtube channel of the University of La Rioja on 29 January 2021, will address the permanent revolution that science and chemistry bring to people's lives and health. A contribution that is still valid today, as demonstrated by the importance they bring to the fight against COVID and the success of the discovery of several vaccines.

Javier García explains how science helps to fight disease.

Javier García Martínez, president-elect of International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC)on Friday 29 January at 11 a.m., will give the conference How chemistry helps us fight disease. It can be followed live on the Youtube channel of the University of La Rioja. Organised by the Centro de Investigación en Síntesis Química (CISQ), Pedro J. Campos, Professor of Organic Chemistry and Director of the CISQ, will present the conference. The video of the presentation by Javier García himself is available at here.

Javier García at Nanomol
Professor Javier García will explain the role of science in the fight against the disease.

He is also a professor at the Rafael el Pino Foundation and president of the Young Academy of SpainJavier García, considers that "science gives us tools to face diseases, but also other major challenges, such as climate change, the fight against inequality or other Sustainable Development Goals", he points out.

In his talk, the professor of inorganic and organic chemistry and of the Molecular Nanotechnology Laboratory of the University of Alicante will take a historical look at the contributions of chemistry to the health and well-being of humankind. Disinfectants, antiseptics, antibiotics and vaccines represent fundamental advances in the fight against disease. A decisive role and an unprecedented leap for life, unthinkable 200 years ago, "when we didn't even know that many diseases were caused by germs".

Covid and chemistry

The latest episode in this fertile contribution of science, and more specifically chemistry, to public health is taking place today. The impact of Covid on people's health is being combated and reversed thanks to chemistry-based resources such as corticosteroids, antibiotics and vaccines.

"The ability to have a vaccine in record time and the safety of its application show that science and chemistry are the main bulwark against a pandemic," says Javier García Martínez.

Javier García illustrates the revolution in life brought about by the widespread use of vaccines and other advances resulting from chemistry, such as water purification, by means of a fact. Just 100 years ago, life expectancy at birth for Spaniards was less than 40 years old, whereas today it is around 80.

"Ultimately, my message is to invite people, especially young people, to see science as an ally and as a source of possibilities," explains the IUPAC president-elect.

IUPAC is the body responsible for recognising and naming new chemical elements, defining chemical measurements, names, methods and the periodic table.