Pushchino science centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences, a leading Russian research institution in physical and chemical biology, has recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. The centre was established in the 50s of the 20th century as an innovative institute for applying biophysics and biochemistry in various fields of biology and for performing fundamental theoretical research for development of further recommendations for using biological achievements in the national economy. The institute developed and finally matured as a complex of modern biological facilities, which became famous worldwide in a short period of time. Fellows of the institute performed research in biophysics, microbiology, biochemistry, plant physiology and photosynthesis, soil science and many other promising scientific fields. The obtained results were essential for medicine, agriculture and various industries. Then, in the nineties, the complex was transformed into the Pushchino science centre, uniting all scientific institutions of the city.
Worldwide recognition came to the centre after presentation of fundamental works in the field of biosynthesis and spatial organization of protein macromolecules, autowave processes in physical and chemical environments, primary processes of photosynthesis, reception and intracellular regulation. Many eminent scientists – Gleb Franck, Georgiy Skryabin, Yuri Ovchinnikov, Alexander Baev, and Alexander Spirin – have contributed to the science scientific projects of the centre.
Today the Pushchino science centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences consists of nine biological institutes and a radioastronomical observatory. Two higher educational institutions – the branch of Moscow State University’s biology faculty and Pushchino State University – train highly qualified staff for future prosperity of biological research in our country. In 2005 the centre was awarded the Science Town status.
Today’s realities, which are not very not favorable for the whole scientific community in Russia, compel the scientific institution to turn into the a research and production centre – modern life leaves no place for being romantic. This massive and ambitious mission requires development of financial and technical basis of the centre’s institutes. Another important aspect is education and professional training of fellows for performing high-quality research in present-day physical and chemical biology projects. Nevertheless, scientists consider this difficult mission feasible for the Science Town, and their reasons are very convincing. For example, one of the centre’s institutes – the Institute of Biochemistry and Physiology of Microorganisms – hosts the largest collection of microorganisms in the Russian Federation. Another institute has one of the world best nurseries for growing pathogenic-free laboratory animals for medical studies, as well as the centre for preclinical studies, which is said to be perfect for trials of biologically active substances according GLP international standard. The unique “Biotron” facility, which allows imitation necessary climatic conditions in the laboratory, helps to perform fundamental research in genetic engineering and plant biotechnology. Bright examples of scientific achievement of the centre are transgenic weed, which contains no tetrahydrocannabinol – an active narcotic agent of the Cannabis species, and tomato species with high storability.
There’s no doubt that Pushchino`s scientists will cope with all challenging tasks – they have everything a researcher needs: modern working facilities, talent and good thinking potential.