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The Transylvanian Experimental Neuroscience Summer School celebrates its tenth year

A group of summer school attendees posing for a group photo, with a backdrop of rolling hills.

26 September 2022

Romania’s Pike Lake is an important refuge for the wide variety of migratory birds that pass through it each year. This summer, it also played host to a community of neuroscientists who had gathered for the tenth edition of the Transylvanian Experimental Neuroscience Summer School (TENSS). Running from 1-21 June 2022, the course was partly funded by one of our Scientific Meeting Grants.

A Travelling Fellowship unlocks a new technique

A 3D model of two cells imaged using FIB-SEM, with chromatin and a lagging chromosome highlighted.

19 August 2022

The risk of developing a subtype of leukaemia known as iAMP21-ALL is amplified in individuals that carry the translocated chromosome rob(15;21)c. Connor Gilkes-Imeson used a Travelling Fellowship from Journal of Cell Science to learn 3D correlative light electron microscopy (3D-CLEM), a technique that he plans to apply in his studies of the kinetochore attachments that form at this mutated chromosome.

Meet our Directors: Stephen Royle

10 August 2022

Steve Royle is based at the Centre for Mechanochemical Cell Biology, Warwick Medical School, where his team is investigating the molecular mechanisms that underpin two important cellular processes: membrane trafficking and mitosis. “We’re interested in the nuts and bolts of how these key processes work,” Steve explained.

Promoting structural biology research in Africa

A group of researchers posing for a photo outside a conference centre

2 August 2022

Understanding the structural biology underpinning disease can be crucial for informing drug or vaccine design. For example, structural biology can help researchers understand the mechanism that allows a viral spike protein to bind receptors in our cells. However, structural biology research in Africa is suffering from a lack of resources and, consequently, from the loss of skilled researchers who are moving to pursue a career in this field overseas. To address this, BioStruct-Africa ran a workshop that brought the African structural biology community together by providing training and networking opportunities. BioStruct-Africa was awarded one of our Scientific Meeting Grants to support the event.

A return to in-person internships

Two people standing in front of a presentation screen

6 July 2022

Emily Simmons, our first intern able to work in the office since the start of the pandemic, recounts her experience.

Meet our Directors: Sally Lowell

22 August 2022

Sally Lowell is a developmental and stem cell biologist at the University of Edinburgh, UK. “My group is interested in how cells build embryos and tissues, and how we can control the behaviour of these cells in culture,” she explained. She is particularly interested in the local ‘conversations’ that cells have when communicating with their neighbours, and how these local interactions can affect their fate within the developing embryo. Sally’s lab is developing tools to ‘listen in’ on the communications between cells. They are also investigating how differences in cell adhesion and tissue morphology can affect this communication.

Towards a Mediterranean coral cell atlas

Anthony standing in front of a monastery built into the side of a mountain.

18 August 2022

Rising sea temperatures are having a devastating effect on tropical corals and, sadly, we have become used to seeing images of bleached and dying reefs on the news. However, the impacts on their Mediterranean counterparts have not received as much attention. A Travelling Fellowship helped fund PhD student Anthony Bonacolta’s trip across the Atlantic to Barcelona, where he was able to lay the foundations for the development of a Mediterranean coral cell atlas.

Workshop – Creative Science Writing

A group of people walking up the steps to a stately home

8 August 2022

We rounded off June with a slightly unusual Workshop, which aimed to nurture new voices in science writing. Organised by Buzz Baum, Enrico Coen, Mark Miodownik and Jennifer Rohn, the Workshop brought aspiring writers, established authors and agents together in the beautiful surroundings of Wiston House, Sussex.

Meet our Directors: Holly Shiels

29 July 2022

Holly Shiels is based at the University of Manchester, UK, where her lab investigates the interplay between environment and cardiac physiology. They are currently working on the tolerance of fishes to hypoxia and to changes in temperature, as well as the effects of microplastics and crude oil on cardiac health. This latter research area also relates to broader concerns about air pollution, since crude oil contains polyaromatic hydrocarbons, which are the same molecules that form a ‘corona’ around particulate matter in the air we breathe.

Heading south for the winter with a Travelling Fellowship

A researcher sitting in a car. Her thermo imaging equipment is on the back seat behind her

25 May 2022

Beaks are an important asset for birds that live in environments with limited freshwater. This is because their bills are thought to offer a route for non-evaporative heat loss, helping the birds to regulate their body temperatures without losing water. Mackenzie Roeder, a PhD student from the University of Maine, used a Travelling Fellowship from Journal of Experimental Biology to support her quantification of this effect in the field.

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