My journey to unravel complex actions of thyroid hormone: was it fate or destiny?

    1. Sheue-yann Cheng
    1. Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, 37 Convent Drive, Room 5128, Bethesda, Maryland 20892‐4264, USA
    1. Correspondence should be addressed to S-y Cheng; Email: chengs{at}

    I am the youngest of five children in a Chinese family. My father was deprived of a high school education because he needed to help my grandfather's family business. During my father's childhood living in a small village in Southern Taiwan, it was very common that children were not encouraged to seek education beyond the elementary school level, as the few high schools in the country were located many miles away and because the financial needs of the families had precedence. However, my father was a self-educated man. While learning how to run a business from my grandfather, he somehow got hold of a copy of Analects of Confucius (Lúnyû), a collection of sayings and ideas attributed to the Chinese philosopher Confucius and his contemporaries. My father believed in the essence of the Confucian teaching that students should become ethically well-cultivated men. They should be devoted to their parents and older siblings and should carry themselves with dignity, and embody integrity and virtues in all things. When my father did not understand the words in Lúnyû, he would look them up in the dictionary. When the meaning of the sentences confounded him, he would stop by to see his teachers at the elementary school for clarification. Those teachers, realizing my father's thirst for learning, voluntarily tutored him at nights in other subjects taught at the high school level: mathematics, geography, history, and Chinese literature. However, I believe that it was Confucius' teachings that had shaped what my father was: a man who was disciplined, diligent, and respectful of parents; one who listened more and spoke less, and, above all, who held a deep reverence and admiration for scholars and a strong belief in the value of education.

    Desiring to provide his children with …

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