LMB In The News


Biologists create one of life’s first enzymes

“tC19Z, synthesised in Phil Holliger’s lab at LMB, could be a version of one of the first enzymes that ever existed on our planet – and a clue to how life itself got started.” More…

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Heptares Therapeutics helps push GPCR drug discovery forward

Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN)

“G-protein-coupled receptors are hot drug targets, and plenty of companies want to know what they look like to get an edge on making new drugs. Despite recent advances, getting X-ray crystal structures for GPCRs is still far from easy. Heptares Therapeutics, joins a trio of firms in licensing their structure-determining technology and partnering with large drugmakers to help push GPCR drug discovery forward. Heptares Therapeutics obtains GPCR X-ray structures with help from thermal stabilization – a targeted mutation technique developed by Chris Tate and Richard Henderson at LMB.” More…

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Max Perutz: his life and legacy

“LMB scientists take part in a round-table discussion about Max Perutz.” More…

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Mariann Bienz talks about signalling pathways as a target for cancer therapies

“A number of signalling pathways discovered in Drosophila flies and other model organisms have subsequently turned out to be important in cancer and specifically in cancer stem cell function. Mariann Bienz talks about the role of the Wnt signalling pathway in cancer growth and cancer metastases but warns of difficulties developing therapies to target this pathway. Prof Bienz explains what progress has been made by academic labs working to develop therapies to target signalling pathways and explains the mechanisms through which the pathways can be affected.” More…

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Light turns on caged enzyme

Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN)

“An unnatural amino acid has given researchers a switch to turn on a specific enzyme with light. This tool will allow scientists to determine the timing of cellular signaling and identify which parts of a signaling network might be good drug targets. When organisms or cells receive signals from their surroundings, a cascade of enzymes known as kinases pass those signals along. These signaling cascades are complicated networks that can be hard to interpret in real time. Jason Chin and Arnaud Gautier from LMB, along with Alexander Deiters of North Carolina State University, may have found a way to make such interpretation easier.” More…

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Greg Winter presented with Distinguished Technopreneur Speaker Award

“The Distinguished Technopreneur Speaker (DTS) Forum, organised by Exploit Technologies, serves as a relevant platform for entrepreneurs, industry leaders, researchers, scholars and students to converge, share ideas and network with various industry players to seed the spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship amongst the local scientific community. This year’s Distinguished Technopreneur Speaker Award recipient is serial inventor and entrepreneur, Sir Gregory Winter.” More…

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Building on a legacy in antibody research

“With world-class facilities and a vibrant research community, the Babraham Research Campus has recently attracted some of the most exciting new generation antibody companies in Europe…In the 1980s, Jonathan Howard and Geoff Butcher from the Babraham Institute collaborated closely with Nobel Prize winner César Milstein and colleagues at the Medical Research Council’s Laboratory of Molecular Biology (MRC-LMB) to produce, what were described as, ‘the first useful monoclonal antibodies’.” More…

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Sean Munro: Revealing the Golgi’s true identity

“Although cargo proteins move through the different organelles of the secretory pathway, other proteins remain in place to give each compartment its own unique identity and function. Sean Munro, from the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, England, has been interested in how proteins find their place within the secretory pathway since his PhD studies with Hugh Pelham, when he discovered a heat-shock protein that was retained in the ER lumen due to a specific KDEL sequence at its C terminus.” More…

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Moments of Genius: Nobel laureate Venki Ramakrishnan describes how James Watson discovered DNA base pairing

“Nobel laureate Venki Ramakarishnan describes how James Watson discovered DNA base pairing which showed how the DNA double helix could carry information from one generation to the next.” More…

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Facebook check ‘before lights out’

“The last thing that more than 70% of British adults do before they go to bed is check social network sites, figures show. Instead of curling up with a good book before nodding off, 72% of adults check status updates on Facebook, a study conducted on behalf of Travelodge found… Sleep specialist Dr Michael Hastings, a researcher for the Medical Research Council at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridgeshire, said: “It’s having a huge negative effect on people’s sleep. Adults don’t realise what impact using computers, mobile phones and other gadgets before falling sleep is having on their night’s sleep.” More…

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