Research at the LMB

The LMB’s research divisions – Cell Biology, Neurobiology, Protein and Nucleic Acid Chemistry (PNAC) and Structural Studies – work together as a close-knit community. Each Division has its own strengths and strategic goals but they all aim to understand biological processes at the molecular level, using methods drawn from physics, chemistry and genetics.

The divisions are complemented by the chemistry-orientated Centre for Chemical and Synthetic Biology (CCSB) set up to provide the resources needed to drive synthetic biology forward.

LMB scientists are involved in a number of key areas of research including:

  • Biology of immunity and cancer
  • Molecular neuroscience and the origins of neurodegenerative disease
  • Synthetic biology and in vitro evolution
  • Intercellular signalling and membrane trafficking

To explore these areas they use a range of methods, such as:

  • Advanced optical microscopy of live cells
  • Computational biology
  • Selection technologies
  • Structural determination of biological “machines” by X-ray crystallography and electron cryo-microscopy
  • Genetic, optical and electrophysiological analysis of neural circuits
  • Genetic analysis of behaviour

While much of this work is in done in vitro, some of the studies require whole organisms and LMB research uses drosophila, nematode worms, mice and rats when there is no suitable alternative. The Biological Services Group are responsible for the care, welfare and breeding of the rodents.

The LMB’s research focuses on fundamental curiosity-driven studies, rather than targeted translational research, however scientists are supported and encouraged to explore opportunities for technology transfer whenever possible.

Published research

Access a listing of recent publications or search the LMB Library and Archive’s record of all known LMB publications. More …

Support services and facilities

Read about the LMB’s huge range of specialist scientific facilities, electronic and technical workshops and support services, staffed by experts, to enable scientists to focus on their research. More…

Locally developed software

Find out about the scientific software written by the LMB’s researchers and made available, wherever possible, as open source software. More…

Collaborations with the University of Cambridge

LMB scientists from across the Divisions are involved in various collaborations and initiatives with the University of Cambridge. More…