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Putting Armenia on the Map of Scientific Excellence through ANSEF

Updated: May 19

Liana Hayriyan leads her growing scientific team, carefully writing down the formula for making important amino acids. It's like solving an exciting puzzle, turning a simple task into something big, like a skilled architect starting work on a massive building.


Since 2015, synthesis has been more than a passion for Liana; it has become her consuming obsession, her raison d'être, within the halls of the Scientific and Production Center "Armbiotechnology." Here, amidst the gentle strains of Aram Khachaturian and the pulsating beats of Hans Zimmer's electronic orchestrations, the remarkable trio of ANSEF scholars - Liana, Anna, and Hasmik - embark on a symphonic journey of discovery, composing new syntheses that resonate with the harmonies of classical and modern music alike. In other words, there are many essential amino acids in humans, the lack of which can lead to various diseases, from hair loss to much more complex diseases.

Liana and her team synthesize analogues of these indispensable amino acids, non-protein amino acids, conduct computer and laboratory biological studies of them using state of the art methodology and tools. Depending on the data obtained, they want to reach to a point where one of these analogues would make it to the composition of a relevant medicine.


Among the 17 scholar groups honored with the prestigious FAR’s Yervant Terzian Armenian National Science and Education Fund (ANSEF), Liana's name shines brightly under the special Yeramyan Family Grant, her second ANSEF triumph following a groundbreaking contribution in 2020 to the study of stereoselective synthesis. Now, armed with her 2024 grant, Liana and her dedicated team work on a quest to unravel the mysteries of asymmetric synthesis and molecular docking studies, weaving together a tapestry of novel non-protein α-amino acids with diverse amine groups.


"I was in disbelief when I learned of the grant," Liana says, her eyes sparkling with determination. "To lead this team is both a privilege and a weighty responsibility." Yet, she remains resolute, knowing that their research, though still in its nascent stages, holds the promise of transformative impact in fields as varied as medicine and agriculture.

"During my master's program, my fascination with synthesis grew, leading me to pursue my PhD in that field. Through our work, we can synthesize amino acids, often in an asymmetric manner. Consider the case of thalidomide, once prescribed to pregnant women as an anti-nausea medication. One of its isomers exhibited therapeutic properties, while the other resulted in severe birth defects, including the infamous 'thalidomide babies.' This tragic episode underscored the importance of deliberate synthesis, prompting a shift towards purposefully isolating specific isomers.”


Liana and her team have generated numerous innovative ideas, as she modestly refers to them, through various combinations of biologically active synthesis. In our world of alchemy, every synthesis begets a multitude of possibilities, each a step closer to putting Armenia on the map of scientific excellence.”

Join us in fueling groundbreaking research initiatives like Liana's by donating to FAR today and be part of the journey toward scientific excellence and global progress.



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