Her detailed proposal relates to a better understanding of enzymes – an area of great practical interest for the leather industry. Entitled: “Investigation of mass transfer and action mechanism of enzymes in unhairing and bating processes using fluorescence tracing”, the research aims to establish an appropriate method for directly observing the transfer of enzymes in skin/hide materials, and to find the conditions for effective transfer and reaction of enzymes in animal pelts. The results may guide tanneries to improved application of enzymes in leather making.

Yunhang Zeng received her PhD degree in Leather Chemistry and Engineering in 2013 and now works in the National Engineering Laboratory for Clean Technology of Leather Manufacture at Sichuan University. She focuses on research of enzyme applications in the leather industry and has previously published articles on enzymes in JALCA and made presentations at IULTCS Congresses.

Dr Luis Zugno, IUR Chair, said that there were 20 applications for the award from seven countries representing a wide range of interesting and innovative research topics. “We are delighted with the submissions”, he stated, “but unfortunately have only one YLSA Award. We do plan to issue another grant for 2016, and details will be provided later this year”.