SUISSE news Fall 2017 / October 2017
Zurich has Europe’s best airport
Zurich Airport has again won the World Travel Award, making it Europe’s leading airport for the 14th year in a row.
The London-based media firm World Travel Awards Ltd. has been handing out the international World Travel Award since 1993. According to a statement from Zurich Airport AG, the airport won the award this year as Europe’s leading airport – for the 14th consecutive time. It beat out eight other competitors: Barcelona, Hamburg, London/Heathrow, Lisbon, Munich, Paris/Charles de Gaulle, Pristina and Schiphol.
The ratings result from an internet survey of travel experts and the general public. The criteria used to assess the airports include customer satisfaction and the general standard of products and service quality.Zurich Airport CEO Stephan Widrig sees the prize as recognition of all the partner companies operating at Zurich Airport. “Only the excellent cooperation among all companies makes it possible to offer our guests superb quality.”
Lausanne University professor wins 2017 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Jacques Dubochet, honorary professor of biophysics at the University of Lausanne, was awarded the prestigious accolade jointly with Joachim Frank from Columbia University and Richard Henderson from Cambridge’s Laboratory of Molecular Biology.
Three scientists won this year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the development of cryo-electron microscopy, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences announced on October 4. Among the laureates is Swiss professor Jacques Dubochet, honorary professor of biophysics at the University of Lausanne (UNIL). The two other recipients are German professor Joachim Frank from Columbia University and Briton Richard Henderson from Cambridge’s Laboratory of Molecular Biology. They will equally share the prize amounting to 9 million Swedish kronor, about one million Swiss francs.
A new era for biochemistry
Cryo-electron microscopy both simplifies and improves the imaging of biomolecules. It allows researchers to freeze biomolecules mid-movement and visualize processes they have never previously seen, which is decisive for both the basic understanding of life’s chemistry and for the development of pharmaceuticals, the Nobel Prize organizers said in a statement. With their work, Dubochet and his colleagues moved biochemistry into a new era.
A tiny country, many Nobel laureates
According to the latest edition of the IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook, Switzerland boasts the second highest number of Nobel Prizes per million inhabitants awarded in physics, chemistry, medicine and economics since 1950. In total, eight Swiss scientists have received a Nobel Prize in Chemistry to date, including Jacques Dubochet. Born in 1942 to “optimistic parents”, as he writes in his CV published on the UNIL website, he received his PhD from the universities of Basel and Geneva. In 1987, he joined the Department of Ultrastructural Analysis of the University of Lausanne, where he spent most of his career.Switzerland leads economics league for expatsOn the latest Expat Explorer survey conducted by HSBC Explorer Switzerland receives top marks for its economic system.
Switzerland leads economics league for expats
On the latest Expat Explorer survey conducted by HSBC Explorer Switzerland receives top marks for its economic system.
The HSBC Expat Explorer survey has been issued annually for 10 years and is regarded as one of the largest independent global expat surveys. The overall league table ranks the countries and territories according to a summary on expat’s views on economics, experience and family life aspects in their host country. This year, more than 27,500 expats living across the world returned their questionnaires and rated their temporary homes.
Confidence in economy and politics
Expats granted Switzerland best marks regarding economics. It is the highest ranked country for confidence in the local economy and political stability. As a federal republic its political system is secure and balanced. Switzerland’s economy is highly regarded due to free competition and trade as well as the protection of intellectual property. As the domestic market is small Swiss companies have been forced to seek and cultivate abroad for a long time. Thus, its market and industries have strong international ties. Its positive economic climate and the democratic political system are among the main factors that Switzerland for nine consecutive years has been ranked the most competitive nation in the Global Competitiveness Report issued by the World Economic Forum.
Beyond work and business
Switzerland offers a high standard of living, where work, leisure time, innovation, creativity, family and recreation well go hand in hand. Urban hot spots and cultural life are close to nature and picturesque landscapes. It’s a great place for outdoor activities, in summer as well as in winter time. Thanks to an elaborate public transport system all places are well connected. Whether it be by train, bus or boat. Located in the heart of Europe all major European destinations are just a short trip away from Switzerland. In the HSBC Expat Explorer survey Switzerland placed 28th and 35th respectively, regarding experience and family life. The high quality of living continuously grants Switzerland excellent marks in global rankings.
Empa develops glue for wounds
Researchers at the Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) have developed a nanoparticle-based tissue glue that can be used on wounds that are not conducive to stitches.
Wound-related complications arising after operations can still be life-threatening despite medical advances, writes Empa in a statement. Internal wounds in particular pose a risk of haemorrhage, which is difficult to treat because it is not easy to stitch or apply a plaster to internal wounds.
St.Gallen researchers led by Inge Herrmann have now developed an alternative for closing such wounds: a nanoparticle-based tissue glue. The glue combines with bioglass, which has different properties depending on the elements used; one formula, for example, is good with bones, another is more effective with soft tissue. The combination of glue and bioglass makes the blood clot more quickly at the location of the wound.
The idea of a tissue glue is not new, but conventional glue consists primarily of fibrin, which is not only very expensive but can also trigger immune responses.
According to Empa, their newly developed tissue glue opens up completely new treatment possibilities. A first study of its potential surgical use has already been published. The glue was tested on intestinal injuries in pigs and the first findings were extremely promising. “So promising, in fact, that this line of research is still being pursued,” wrote Empa.
Herrmann believes that the glue could offer further possibilities if it is given additional properties.