Scientific Seminars

Below is a list of upcoming seminars at the LMB aimed at a general scientific audience and open to individuals throughout Cambridge. If you are not at the LMB and wish to attend a seminar, please contact Nikki Dominguez.

The LMB hosts ‘The LMB Seminar Series’, where 1-2 leading scientists per month are invited to speak throughout the year. Four of these lectures are named in honour of LMB Nobel Laureates Max Perutz, Francis Crick, César Milstein and John Kendrew, given by eminent scientists from around the world. The LMB Seminar talks and LMB Named Seminar talks are advertised widely throughout the local area and are open to all.

2018 LMB Seminar Series speakers (click to expand)

    • Xiaowei Zhuang – 4pm, 15th January, Kendrew Lecture
    • Erin O’Shea – 11am, 7th March, Perutz Lecture
    • Mark Hochstrasser – 11am, 12th March
    • Lukas Kapitein – 4pm, 15th March
    • Jaques Dubochet – 4pm, 26th April, Kendrew Lecture
    • Titia De Lange Rockefeller – 11am, 23rd May
    • Steve Harrison – 4pm, 28th June
    • Eric Gouaux – 4pm, 29th November, Perutz Lecture


A full list of LMB Named Lectures to date can be found here.

Details of other local seminars can be found here

  • Native Membrane Structural Biology: Combining proton-detected solid-state NMR and electron cryotomography to study membrane proteins across resolutions in their native environment

    Speaker: Doctor Lindsay Baker, Oxford Particle Imaging Centre Division of Structural Biology, University of Oxford
    Host: Andrew Carter/Radu Aricescu, MRC LMB
    Date: 28/02/2018 at 11:00am in the Klug Seminar Room, Level 2, LMB.

    Further information

    Membrane proteins remain challenging targets for structural biology, despite much effort, as their native environment is heterogeneous and complex. Most methods rely on extraction of membrane proteins from the bilayer, but this removal can significantly alter the structure and function of these proteins. Here, we overcome these challenges with a hybrid method to study membrane proteins in their native membranes, combining high- resolution solid-state NMR spectroscopy and electron cryotomography using the same sample. Our method allows the structure and function of membrane proteins to be studied across different spatial and temporal resolutions, and the combination is more powerful than each technique individually. We use the method to demonstrate that the bacterial membrane protein YidC adopts a different conformation in native membranes and that substrate binding to YidC in these native membranes differs from purified and reconstituted systems.

  • Perutz Lecture- On clocks and tuners: cyanobacterial strategies to thrive in a dynamic environment

    Speaker: Erin O Shea, Harvard University, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
    Host: Liz Miller
    Date: 07/03/2018 at 11:00am in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

    Further information

    Organisms across all kingdoms of life have evolved circadian clocks to temporally align biological activities with diurnal changes in the environment. In the cyanobacterium Synechococcus elongatus the core oscillator is comprised of the proteins KaiA, KaiB, and KaiC that generate oscillations in the phosphorylation state of KaiC. Time encoded in the phosphorylation state of KaiC is transmitted to the master transcriptional regulator RpaA to generate changes in circadian gene expression. Although the circadian output does not affect growth in constant light conditions, it has substantial effects on fitness in cycling conditions when dark and light periods alternate. In my talk I will describe our findings that reveal why the circadian system is important under cycling conditions and how cellular physiology is altered in these conditions.

  • Oral pathobiont Porphyromonas gingivalis promotes arthritis by perturbing resolution responses and gut barrier function

    Speaker: Maggie Flak, William Harvey Research Insitute
    Host: Immunology and Medicine Seminar
    Date: 09/03/2018 at 1:00pm in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

  • LMB Seminar Series- Toxin-Antitoxin Modules Drive Reproductive Manipulation by Intracellular Wolbachia Bacteria

    Speaker: Mark Hochstrasser, Yale, USA
    Host: Liz Miller and Anne Bertolotti
    Date: 12/03/2018 at 11:00am in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

    Further information

    Wolbachia are obligate intracellular bacteria that infect millions of species, including some two-thirds of all insect species. These symbionts manipulate host reproduction to enhance their inheritance through the female germline. The most common mechanism of reproductive alteration is called cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI), wherein eggs from uninfected females fail to develop when fertilized by sperm from Wolbachia-infected males, but embryos are fully viable if infected females mate with either infected or uninfected males. CI is a potent gene-drive mechanism that impacts population structure and evolution of new species, but its molecular mechanisms have remained unknown. We show that Wolbachia operons encoding either a deubiquitylating enzyme (DUB) called CidB or a nuclease called CinB can induce CI. In transgenic fruit flies, the DUB or nuclease appears to act as a toxin when sperm introduce either into eggs. The Wolbachia DUB and nuclease proteins are encoded in two-gene operons in which the upstream genes encode factors that bind in a cognate-specific fashion to these enzymes. When expressed in yeast, the DUB or nuclease proteins are also toxic, and their enzyme activity is required for toxicity. Toxicity is suppressed by co-expression of the cognate upstream factor. Our data suggest distinct mechanisms for CI involving toxin and antitoxin-like proteins secreted into germline cells by resident bacteria. These results may have practical applications in limiting disease vectors, such as mosquitoes that carry Zika or dengue fever viruses, or crop pests.

  • LMB Seminar Series- Title to follow

    Speaker: Lukas Kapitein
    Host: Simon Bullock and Andrew Carter
    Date: 15/03/2018 at 4:00pm in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

  • Kendrew Lecture- Title to follow

    Speaker: Jaques Dubochet
    Host: Richard Henderson
    Date: 26/04/2018 at 4:00pm in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

    Further information

  • LMB Seminar Series- Title to follow

    Speaker: Titia De Lange Rockefeller
    Host: KJ Patel
    Date: 22/05/2018 at 4:00pm in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

  • LMB Seminar Series- Title to follow

    Speaker: Michael Hall
    Host: KJ Patel
    Date: 29/05/2018 at 4:00pm in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

  • LMB Seminar Series- Title to follow

    Speaker: Steve Harrison
    Host: Yorgo Modis
    Date: 28/06/2018 at 4:00pm in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

  • LMB Seminar Series- Title to follow

    Speaker: Jordan Raff
    Host: Simon Bullock and David Barford
    Date: 20/09/2018 at 4:00pm in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

  • Next Generation Biophysics

    Host: Stephen McLaughlin
    Date: 26/09/2018 at 9:00am in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.

  • Perutz Lecture- Title to follow

    Speaker: Eric Gouaux
    Host: Chris Tate
    Date: 29/11/2018 at 4:00pm in the Max Perutz Lecture Theatre, LMB.