Prebiotic Chemistry, origins of life
Dr. Sheref Mansy grew up in Ohio. After finishing his studies in biochemistry at a football school, he went to New England for a postdoctoral position. His research in Boston was on the origins of life. Then in a strange turn of events, he took up an academic position in Italy and lived there for 10 years. There he worked on synthesizing artificial cells and protocells and enjoyed life in the Dolomite mountains. Recently, he moved to the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada. His laboratory is continuing to probe the divide between nonliving and living chemical systems. Although studying the origins of life was not a childhood dream, Sheref was always fascinated by how the scientific method could be used to describe the world around us. Studying how life began on our planet may seem strange, but such work helps to uncover the beautiful and ancient chemical-physical forces that give rise to everything around us, including ourselves. One day we will understand those things that seem unreachable now, and that knowledge will alter how we see ourselves and our place in the universe.