Asian Inventors

A few of the contributions of Asian American inventors.

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, held each year during the month of May, celebrates Asian Pacific American cultures and heritage and recognizes the many contributions Asian Pacific Americans have made to this nation.

An Wang

An Wang (1920-1990), a Chinese-born American computer scientist, is best known for founding Wang Laboratories and holding over thirty-five patents including patent #2,708,722 for a magnetic pulse transfer controlling device which related to computer memory and was crucial to the development of digital information technology.
Wang Laboratories was founded in 1951 and by 1989 employed 30,000 people and had $3 billion a year in sales, with such developments as desktop calculators and the first word processors. An Wang was inducted into the National Inventor's Hall of Fame in 1988.

Enrique Ostrea

Doctor Enrique Ostrea received patent #5,015,589 and patent #5,185,267 for methods of testing infants for exposure to drugs or alcohol during pregnancy. Enrique Ostrea was born in the Philippines and immigrated to America in 1968. Ostrea continues to be honored for his contributions to pediatrics and neonatology.

Tuan Vo-Dinh

Tuan Vo-Dinh, who immigrated to the United States in 1975 from Vietnam, has received twenty-three patents mainly related to optical diagnostic equipment, including his first patents (#4,674,878 and #4,680,165) for badges that can be optically scanned to determine exposure to toxic chemicals. Vo-Dinh utilizes similar technology in patent #5,579,773 which is an optical method of cancer detection.

Flossie Wong-Staal

Flossie Wong-Staal, a Chinese-American scientist, is a leader in AIDS research.
Working with a team that included Dr. Robert C. Gallo, she helped to discover the virus that causes AIDS and a related virus that causes cancer. She also did the first mapping of HIV's genes. Wong-Staal continues to work on a vaccine to prevent AIDS and treatments for those with AIDS. Her patents, which were granted with co-inventors, include patent #6,077,935 for a method of testing for AIDS.