Heidelberg, 27 September 2016 Welcome to EMBL: Mikhail Savitski For Mikhail Savitski, running a research group and a core facility is “a fantastic challenge.” The cross-pollination between them informs his research, which is based on mass spectrometry. His group is working on a technology that measures the stability of proteins, shedding new light into more effective drug treatments as well as open questions in molecular biology.
Heidelberg, 26 September 2016 Turning up the heat on drug side effects By tracking the impact of a widely used leukaemia drug on proteins inside living cells, research led by EMBL’s Savitski team and Cellzome has shed light on the molecular causes of the drug’s side effects. Published in Nature Chemical Biology, the study also indicates that the drug has potential to be repurposed to treat tyrosinemia, a rare genetic disorder that can lead to liver, kidney and neurological problems.
Heidelberg, 26 September 2016 Watching nuclear pores in growing nuclei This image answers the puzzle of how a new nuclear pore forms across the double membrane that encloses a cell’s nucleus. Scientists at EMBL Heidelberg, led by Martin Beck and Jan Ellenberg, used live cell imaging and high-resolution electron microscopy techniques to look at intact human cells with growing nuclei and watch nuclear pores form. Postdoc Shotaro Otsuka found that the proteins form a mushroom shaped complex that deforms the inner membrane of the nucleus.
Grenoble, 14 September 2016 New drug candidate unleashed for TB Due to the alarming spread of totally drug resistant strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB), scientists are seeking new drugs to combat this life-threatening pathogen. Stephen Cusack, head of EMBL’s Grenoble site; and Andrés Palencia, an EMBL alumnus now at the Grenoble Institute for Advanced Biosciences contributed important structural biology expertise to a large consortium of chemists, biochemists and microbiologists led by Anacor Pharmaceuticals (Palo Alto) to help tackle this problem.
Heidelberg, 12 September 2016 New EMBL-Hubrecht Institute partnership EMBL and the Hubrecht Institute in Utrecht, the Netherlands, have signed an agreement establishing the EMBL-Hubrecht Partnership for Stem Cell and Tissue Biology. Building upon existing links between the two organisations, the partnership aims to establish a working relationship to support scientific exchange and complementarity. Working at the interface of stem cell and tissue biology, researchers in this partnership will investigate how human tissues and organs develop and are organised, advancing our understanding of a wide range of diseases, including heart degeneration, Alzheimer's, diabetes and tumours.
Hamburg, 31 August 2016 Taking crystallography to the fourth dimension “Now we have the right people, in the right place, with the right technology!” exclaims EMBL group leader Thomas Schneider, who coordinates activities at the EMBL crystallography beamlines on DESY’s light source PETRA III in Hamburg. Together with Arwen Pearson, Professor at the Centre for Ultrafast Imaging (CUI), Universität Hamburg, he and his team have been laying the groundwork to take crystallography – his structural biology method of choice – into a new time dimension.
General, 31 August 2016 See data in a new light When it comes to lenticular posters, shifting your perspective is as simple as moving your head: What you see standing at one end of the poster may not be the same at the other end. But for several labs at EMBL, converting microscopic data into a 3D poster allows biologists to see what they never knew about before – from where proteins interact with a folding tissue, to how a Drosophila embryo develops. “We almost never see just a sharp surface,” EMBL scientist Stefan Günther points out. “We see reflections, we see shadings, we see noise.”
General, 31 August 2016 Postdocs of EMBL Continuing the 'Humans of EMBL' series, we turn the spotlight on the diverse universe of EMBL’s 200-strong postdoc community. Tuhin Bhowmick, Sibylle Vonesch, Jan Strauss, Grace Mugumbate, Falk Hildebrand, Francesco Iorio and Kate Beckham share their experience of being postdoctorals fellow at EMBL and reveal their individual adventures from explorations in entrepreneurship to balancing work and family.
General, 31 August 2016 Gene editing 3.0 Emmanuelle Charpentier, an alumna of the Nordic EMBL Partnership for Molecular Medicine, sheds light on how CRISPR-Cas9 turned from a side project into a worldwide revolution. EMBL got the opportunity to speak with Charpentier during this year’s EMBL Partnership Conference – Perspectives in Translational Medicine – held in Heidelberg in June.
General, 31 August 2016 From potential to policy Integrated initiatives, creative collaboration and open objectives topped the agenda as EMBL and EMBO hosted a visit from Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation in April. We spoke to Commissioner Moedas to find out more, from his main goals during his visit to Heidelberg to progress towards improving issues such as gender balance in science?