Aitkhozhina Nagima Abenovna (1946 — 2020 гг.)
Academician of the National academy of sciences of the Republic of Kazakhstan
Doctor of biological sciences, Professor
Aitkhozhina Nagima Abenovna is a founder of molecular genetics and molecular medicine in Kazakhstan. For the first time, in Kazakhstan she organized laboratories of the genome and structural and functional genomics, in which new areas of research were developed: the human genome and the molecular mechanisms of the occurrence and predisposition to hereditary diseases, gene expression, the structural and functional organization of the genome of cereal crops, the molecular mechanisms of wheat resistance to phytopathogens, molecular genetic analysis of the DNA of the modern population of Kazakhs, biological processes in living cells affected by microgravity (space biology and biotechnology).
Aitkhozhina Nagima Abenovna was born on February 22, 1946 in Petropavlovsk city. She graduated from C.M. Kirov Kazakh State University with a degree in biology-physiology and biochemistry of plants. From 1970 to 1973 she was a full-time postgraduate student of the V.A. Engelhardt Institute of Molecular Biology ASc of the USSR in Moscow. In 1974 she successfully defended her Candidate dissertation on the topic “Structural and functional organization of nuclear RNP particles containing pro-mRNA”, and in 1990 she defended her doctoral dissertation on the topic “Alkaloids – inhibitors of the biosynthesis of macromolecules”.
From 1974 to 1983 she worked at the Institute of Botany of the Academy of Sciences of the Kazakh SSR on the topic “Exchange and functional activity of alkaloids in plants” as – senior laboratory assistant, junior researcher and senior researcher. In 1983 in connection with the organization of the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry of the Academy of Sciences of the Kazakh SSR, she was transferred to the alkaloid biochemistry laboratory of this Institute. Between 1985 and 1988 years she worked as a Leading researcher at the Institute. In January 1988 she was appointed Deputy Director of the Institute for research work. From 1988 to 1990 she became Acting Director of the IMBB of the Academy of Sciences of the Kazakh SSR. Between 1990 and 2010 she was a Director of IMBB. From 2010 to 2019 worked as a General Director of the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry.
Nagima Aitkhozhina was the Chairman of the dissertation council at the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry for the defense of doctoral and master’s dissertation in the “molecular biology” and “biochemistry” specialties.
A large contribution to the development of biological sciences’ priority areas was the main reason for the election Nagima Aitkhozhina as an Academician-secretary of the biological and medical sciences Department of the Academy of sciences of the Republic of Kazakhstan in 1996. Nagima Aitkhozhina was appointed as a President of the Academy of Sciences by Decree of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N.A. Nazarbayev in 1999.
She was a Member of the Higher scientific and technical commission (HSTK) under the government of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Chairman of the biological section of the Foundation for fundamental research under the government of the Republic of Kazakhstan, a Member of the scientific and technical council and an expert on the projects of the All-Union program “Priority problems of genetics” (Moscow), a Member of the Interdepartmental scientific council for priority areas of physical and chemical biology and biotechnology of the State Committee for science and technology under the Council of Ministers of the USSR (Moscow), a Member of the board of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan. Editor-in-chief of the Doklady NAS RK journal, Member of the editorial board of the Vestnik MON – NAS RK journal. She was a Member of the editorial board of the Russian Academy of Sciences journal “Molecular biology”. Member of the International society for molecular biology and biochemistry (IUBMB), International expert on the INTAS program.
Nagima Aitkhozhina was the supervisor of 3 doctoral, 17 master’s theses, research projects, grants, scientific and technical programs (STP) in fundamental research. She is an author of more than 300 scientific works, many of which were published in leading journals abroad. She received 29 copyright certificates and patents.
She engaged not only to the scientific but also in social activities. She was a Deputy of the USSR Supreme council (1989-2001), a Member of the National commission for family and women affairs under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan (1999-2006), Chairman of the national coordinating committee of the Republic of Kazakhstan for the development of a framework document for the Republic of Kazakhstan on the biosafety of genetically modified organisms (GMO) under the (UNEP-GEF) project (2003-2004).
Scientific achievements of Nagima Aitkhozhina were awarded by: “Barys” III degree Order (2011), “Parasat” Order (2001), Laureate of the “Platinum Tarlan” award in the “Science” nomination (2000), Silver medal of the “Evrika” international exhibition, Brussels (1993); Honorary diplomas of the Academy of Sciences of the Kazakh SSR, National Academy of Science, Ministry of education and science for effective work and contribution to the science development in Kazakhstan.