Zhao Yufen

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Zhao Yufen (simplified Chinese: 赵玉芬; traditional Chinese: 趙玉芬; pinyin: Zhào Yùfēn; born 1948) is a Chinese chemist at the College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Xiamen University.[1] She has been an outspoken critic of chemical plants.[2] She was the youngest female member elected to the Chinese Academy of Sciences.[3]


Zhao was born in Qi County, Hebi, Henan, and moved to Taiwan in 1949 with her parents.[4] Zhao graduated from National Tsing Hua University (Taiwan) in 1971, and received her Ph.D from State University of New York at Stony Brook in 1975.[3] In 1979, she went on to become a researcher at the Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences.[4] She became a professor at Tsinghua University (Beijing) in 1988 and in 1991, was elected to the Chinese Academy of Sciences, then the youngest female academician.[4]

In March 2007, Zhao created a petition to halt the construction of a chemical plant in Xiamen.[5][6] Zhao was against the plant, which was going to produce paraxylene (PX), a carcinogenic petrochemical, due to health risks and pollution of the environment.[7] She said that "As a project with a high risk of poisonous emissions and explosions, the project should not be located close to a city."[8] She also started writing letters to propose a relocation of the plant to He Lefeng, the Party chief of Xiamen.[8] Months later, protesters used text messages to spread the word of a demonstration against the plant.[5] Xiamen lawmakers voted overwhelmingly against the plant, which was located to Gulei Peninsula.[7]

June 15, 2014, Zhao, as the head of the Academy Zhao Yufen of Xiamen University, along with BIOasis, signed on for the construction of a Phosphorus & Marine Science Research Center to be built at the Shandong International Biotechnology Park.[9]

Zhao has work published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, Journal of Organic Chemistry,[10] Angewandte Chemie,[11] Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry,[12] Chemical Communications,[13] Advanced Synthesis & Catalysis,[14] and other journals.


  1. ^ Qiu, Jane (2008-01-09). "China bows to public over chemical plant". Nature News. 451 (7175): 117. Bibcode:2008Natur.451..117Q. doi:10.1038/451117a. PMID 18185552.
  2. ^ Dawei, Yu (7 April 2015). "PX Plant Explosion Sparks Echoes of Warnings Past". Caixin Online. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Prof. Yufen Zhao Ph.D". Tsinghua University. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  4. ^ a b c "Zhao Yufen: Two Hometowns, Same Deep Love". People.com.cn. 21 July 2006. Retrieved 9 November 2015 – via Zonaeuropa.
  5. ^ a b Cody, Edward (28 June 2007). "Text Messages Giving Voice to Chinese". The Washington Post. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  6. ^ Gang, Qian; Bandurski, David (2011). "China's Emerging Public Sphere". In Shirk, Susan L. (ed.). Changing Media, Changing China. Oxford University Press. pp. 66–67. ISBN 9780199751983.
  7. ^ a b "People vs. Chemical Plant". China.org. 14 January 2008. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  8. ^ a b Li, Li (3 January 2008). "Power to the People". Beijing Review. 51 (1): 20–21. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  9. ^ "Academy Zhao Yufen and Her Research Team Start Cooperation with BIOasis". Luye Investment. 15 June 2014. Retrieved 10 November 2015.
  10. ^ Jiang, Deshou; Fu, Hua; Jiang, Yuyang; Zhao, Yufen (2007-01-01). "CuBr/rac-BINOL-Catalyzed N-Arylations of Aliphatic Amines at Room Temperature". The Journal of Organic Chemistry. 72 (2): 672–674. doi:10.1021/jo062060e. ISSN 0022-3263. PMID 17221996.
  11. ^ Liu, Xiaowei; Fu, Hua; Jiang, Yuyang; Zhao, Yufen (3 December 2008). "A Simple and Efficient Approach to Quinazolinones under Mild Copper-Catalyzed Conditions". Angewandte Chemie. 121 (2): 354–357. doi:10.1002/ange.200804675. PMID 19053126.
  12. ^ Zhang, Ting; Chen, Xiaolan; Qu, Lingbo; Wu, Jinglan; Cui, Ran; Zhao, Yufen (2004-12-01). "Chrysin and its phosphate ester inhibit cell proliferation and induce apoptosis in Hela cells". Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry. 12 (23): 6097–6105. doi:10.1016/j.bmc.2004.09.013. PMID 15519155.
  13. ^ Huang, Cheng; Fu, Yuan; Fu, Hua; Jiang, Yuyang; Zhao, Yufen (2008-12-21). "Highly efficient copper-catalyzed cascade synthesis of quinazoline and quinazolinone derivatives". Chemical Communications. 0 (47): 6333–6335. doi:10.1039/b814011a. PMID 19048146.
  14. ^ Guo, Xun; Rao, Honghua; Fu, Hua; Jiang, Yuyang; Zhao, Yufen (2006-10-01). "An Inexpensive and Efficient Copper Catalyst for N-Arylation of Amines, Amides and Nitrogen-Containing Heterocycles". Advanced Synthesis & Catalysis. 348 (15): 2197–2202. doi:10.1002/adsc.200606198. ISSN 1615-4169.

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