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14 July 2022 Visualising the ocean below and above surface, showing several species and giving written details on the ocean microbiome composition

Priorities for ocean microbiome research

Science Microbial communities play essential roles in ocean ecology and planetary health. A recent publication highlights priorities for understanding and protecting ocean microbiomes.

2022

science

19 February 2024 Collage of nine pictures with seven photographs showing expedition members sampling and engaging in public outreach activities, and two photos showing EMBL’s new mobile labs.

TREC in 2024: bringing it home

Science The Traversing European Coastlines (TREC) expedition prepares to begin its next phase of sampling, with stops in Spain, Greece, Italy, and beyond.

2024

science

12 February 2024 Female scientist stands in front of white shelves filled with vials of fruit flies

What I’ve learned: Anne Ephrussi

Lab Matters After 32 years at EMBL – leading a developmental biology research group and later simultaneously serving as EMBL’s Dean for its PhD programme, Anne Ephrussi has retired, ready to start her life’s next chapter.

2024

lab-matters

29 January 2024 InterPro logo

InterPro 98.0 released

Updates from data resources InterPro version 98.0 and InterProScan 5.66-98.0 are now available. InterPro now features hundreds of new methods integrated from partner databases, and InterProScan draws on over 40000 entries. InterPro version 98.0 New features include: InterPro 98.0 covers 81.7% of UniProt Knowledgebase release…

2024

updates-from-data-resources

25 January 2024 An oval light blue shape. In the central part, there is a smaller a red object, from which stem many highly branched smaller canals that cover a significant part of the blue surface. The whole sponge image is in placed in a circle. The background around the circle is blue-green.

Ancient ‘relaxant-inflammatory’ response gets sponges moving

Science Sponges lack muscles and neurons. Yet, they make coordinated movements. Scientists at EMBL Heidelberg have discovered that sponge movement is controlled by an ancient ‘relaxant-inflammatory’ response that is also present in vertebrate blood vessels. The findings shed light on sponge physiology…

2024

science

21 December 2023 On the left: image of a protein complex in a shape of a yellow doughnut with blue elements. Above it is a drawing of nucleic acid with arrows connecting nitrogenous bases to different points in the protein complex. On the right: a line with peaks indicating the peaks recorded in mass spectrometry. Above two peaks, there are smaller depictions of the doughnut-shaped complex, one with a blue element and one without.

RNA to rule them all

Science The Kosinski Group at EMBL Hamburg collaborated with other groups in Hamburg to reveal critical steps in Lassa virus ribonucleoparticle assembly and recruitment, and the crucial role played by RNA in in the Lassa virus life cycle.

2023

science

19 December 2023 Cartoon showing nanoparticles on a conveyer belt passing through a machine. They are ordered by size and the smallest one pass through the machine before the bigger ones. A ray of light enters the machine, where a nanoparticle is being scanned, and leaves it on the other side. A monitor on top of the scanning machine shows an X-ray of a nanoparticle.

‘X-ray vision’ for investigation of mRNA nanomedicines

Science EMBL Hamburg, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Postnova Analytics GmbH, and BioNTech SE have developed a new method to quantitatively investigate sizes of nanoparticles containing mRNA. It may become an important part of regular characterisation of mRNA nanomedicines in the future.

2023

science

7 December 2023 Against blue and green background are two faux polaroids, one of an older man holding a coffee cup and the other a man in glasses

Navigating success: an EMBL alumni mentorship story

Alumni A recent success story of the Alumni Mentorship Programme is that of Luis Pedro Coelho, a Portuguese former postdoctoral fellow in the Bork Group, and his mentor Frank Gannon, former EMBO Director and EMBL Group Leader and Senior Scientist.

2023

alumni

27 November 2023 A man and a woman looking at the camera, parts of a restaurant are visible in the background.

Exploring the universe: Roel Wijnaendts

Alumni EMBL alumnus Roel Wijnaendts looks back at a long career in academic research and entrepreneurship that has left an indelible mark in the fields of instrumentation and optics.

2023

alumni

27 November 2023 Photo of two people brainstorming at the table covered with several papers and images related to the research project, such as the structure of the molecule, a map with the Solar Lake marked, photo of EMBL Hamburg, photo of Garo Antranikian looking into a microscope, pages of the manuscript, data graphs, and more.

Hamburg collaboration paves the way to cleaner technologies for industry

Science An interdisciplinary collaboration between Hamburg scientists has yielded new insights into the structure and function of a heat-resistant enzyme from an exotic microbe. In this interview, EMBL Hamburg’s Matthias Wilmanns and TUHH’s Garo Antranikian discuss how their collaboration developed and…

2023

science

23 November 2023 Photographs of two scientists on a decorative background

ERC Consolidator Grants awarded to two EMBL researchers

Lab Matters Alba Diz-Muñoz and Arnaud Krebs from EMBL Heidelberg have received grants to work on projects that aim, respectively, to understand the cellular mechanics that control cell division and investigate the regulatory networks that govern transcription factor function.

2023

lab-matters

17 November 2023

TREC – Towards the end of the first phase

Lab Matters The TREC expedition has come to the end of its first phase. The last superstop of 2023 was hosted by CIIMAR in Porto and, despite the adverse weather conditions, included many scientific and public engagement activities.

2023

lab-matters

16 November 2023

EMBLetc. issue 101 published

Lab Matters The newest issue of our online magazine dives deep into a critical research direction in developmental biology, structures of promiscuous proteins, EMBL’s newest service offerings in field research, and much, much more.

2023

lab-matters

16 November 2023

New evidence on retinal function

Science A new study from the Asari group at EMBL Rome shows a different retinal function in awake mice compared to isolated retinal samples. These new insights could help to develop prosthetic devices that can act as a retina in the future.

2023

science

15 November 2023 Female scientist

Advocating for a generalist approach to science and life

EMBLetc Sara Fahs, who did her PhD from EMBL Heidelberg and is one of the newest members of the EMBL alumni association board, writes about key insights from her journey in science and her work on medicinal chemistry, during a career spanning academia and industry.

2023

15 November 2023 A truck bearing the TREC mobile services logo and illustration on its side.

Taking science on the road

EMBLetc With the new advanced mobile laboratory, EMBL is taking its service offerings to new heights, bringing cutting-edge life science technologies to the field in a way never seen before.

2023

15 November 2023

Remembering the moment EMBL was established

EMBLetc The EMBL agreement, which made reality the idea of creating a European laboratory for life sciences, was signed in 1973 and ratified in 1974. Fifty years later, we look back at this historic moment.

2023

15 November 2023 Decorative elements on a green background, representing awards.

Awards and honours (Issue 101)

EMBLetc The work and excellence of EMBL researchers have been recognised with multiple awards and honours during the past six months.

2023

15 November 2023

Why time is of the essence in development

EMBLetc EMBL developmental biologists – with help from other disciplines – pursue the significance of time, timing, and transitions in organisms during their development

2023

15 November 2023 Two male scientists in lab coats looking at.a computer screen

Embracing the genome sequencing revolution

EMBLetc EMBL’s Genomics Core Facility provides end-to-end support to researchers across Europe and beyond and stands at the forefront of scientific breakthroughs.

2023

15 November 2023 Illustration showing a doorknob with a lock and many protein-marked keys floating towards it.

The secret of molecular promiscuity

EMBLetc Promiscuity is critical for nourishment. How? This question lies at the focus of research by the Löw Group at EMBL Hamburg. Using structural biology methods, they explore how specialised molecules located in the cell membrane allow cells absorb nutrients from their environment.

2023

14 November 2023 InterPro logo

InterPro 97.0 released

Updates from data resources InterPro version 97.0 and InterProScan 5.64-97.0 are now available. InterPro now features hundreds of new methods integrated from partner databases, and InterProScan draws on over 40000 entries.

2023

updates-from-data-resources

31 October 2023

EMBL’s southern hemisphere connection

Lab Matters Ian Smith, Chair of EMBL Australia´s Council, chats about the synergies between the organisations, opportunities for collaboration, and ideas for exciting new programmes arising out of a recent visit to EMBL Heidelberg.

2023

lab-matters

26 October 2023 Photographs of three scientists on a decorative blue background

EMBL scientists receive prestigious ERC Synergy Grants

Science Jan Kosinski, Julia Mahamid, and Georg Zeller have received grants to enable ambitious projects aimed at mapping the cellular protein synthesis machinery in context and understanding complex host-microbiome interactions, respectively.

2023

science

5 October 2023 A composite image of four 3D micrographs showing the cellular organelles of a phytoplankton marked in different colours.

Spotlight: Seeing into the seas

Science A new method developed by EMBL scientists can help us identify and investigate plankton species in field samples with greater speed, accuracy, and resolution than ever possible before.

2023

science

2 October 2023 Outline of a human, purple against red background. Red RNA strand in the background, electrocardiogram across the image. On the right, outline of a Nobel prize medal.

mRNA nanomedicines scoop Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine

Science Pioneers of the mRNA nanomedicines technology receive 2023 Nobel Prize in Physiology or medicine. EMBL is pleased to have supported the development of the application of the mRNA nanomedicine technology through our long-standing collaboration with BioNTech, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz and…

2023

science

28 September 2023 Visual of AlphaFold Protein prediction, embedded into a visual of scientific data

EMBL receives German AI prize

Science EMBL receives the German AI prize awarded for outstanding services to the research and development as well as application and commercialisation of artificial intelligence (AI) in life science research.

2023

science

27 September 2023 A female scientist with shoulder-length hair and black shirt listens to a male scientist in burgundy shirt and white beard, seated to the right.

Five decades of EMBL visits

Lab Matters Structural biologist Shlomo Trachtenberg has made research trips to EMBL from Israel since the late 1970s and reflects on the boost EMBL’s technology provided his research, the ingredients for an ideal research institution, and his ongoing fascination with microscopes.

2023

lab-matters

21 September 2023

Understanding the mechanisms of enzyme catalysis

Technology and innovation Enzymes constitute a large fraction of genomes – 20% in humans – which makes them a very important part of life. Despite decades of studies and a rich literature dedicated to understanding the reaction mechanisms of enzymes, the rules of enzyme catalysis are still not fully clear. A new…

2023

technology-and-innovation

21 September 2023 Man standing outside

Welcome: David Hulcoop

Announcements, Lab Matters David Hulcoop discusses how his experience bridging organisational cultures will help address critical challenges in drug discovery and target selection at Open Targets.

2023

announcementslab-matters

15 September 2023

Switching off the cytokine storm

Science EMBL Grenoble and University of Geneva researchers shed light on the molecular activation of the MAP kinase p38α, the final ‘switch’ triggering the inflammatory response.

2023

science

13 September 2023

Exploring Nexus Island

Lab Matters Learn more about the game-based workshop that lets participants experience what it feels like to be a researcher on the TREC expedition.

2023

lab-matters

6 September 2023 A drawing of swordfish and a bubble containing a drawing of a molecular model. Both on blue background representing water.

Swordfish sword under X-rays: SAXS explained

Science Learn how scientists use bio-SAXS, an experimental X-ray technique, to study the shape and dynamics of proteins and other biomolecules. SAXS can be even used to analyse the structure of mineral particles in the swordfish sword bone, which can help scientists better understand bone ageing.

2023

science

31 August 2023 Part of a fruit fly embryo imaged against a dark background, with nuclei stained with DAPI (white), and a cluster of pole cells, marked by Vasa protein (yellow)

Spotlight: Off to the pole

Picture of the week, Science For a fruit fly embryo to develop correctly, key factors need to get to the right place at the right time – a journey that starts in the developing egg, as seen in this image from the Ephrussi Group at EMBL Heidelberg

2023

picture-of-the-weekscience

24 August 2023 Set against a blue background, an illustration of a small paper shredder seemingly works at shredding mRNA, often in the form of origami shapes that float nearby.

Deciding when to destroy mRNA

Alumni Elena Conti will discuss how cells control the life and death of mRNA molecules at the next annual Kafatos Lecture on 20 October in Munich.

2023

alumni

22 August 2023 Polaroid style shot of Sergiy Avilov, mentioning the years he was at EMBL

After EMBL: Sergiy Avilov

Alumni Ukrainian scientist Sergiy Avilov uses the microscopy skills and scientific network he built at EMBL in his current role heading the Imaging Facility at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics.

2023

alumni

18 August 2023 On green-hued multi-coloured background are four circle photographs of scientists working with high-tech equipment

Bringing scientific services together ‘2RISE’

Events An upcoming EMBL-led infrastructure management training will help formalise information exchange in the Rhine-Neckar region to widen access to technology and scientific services for members of the Health + Life Science Alliance.

2023

events

8 August 2023 Clément Blanchet at the EMBL Hamburg’s P12 beamline’s experimental hutch.

Welcome: Clément Blanchet

Lab Matters Clément Blanchet has been appointed to lead the team working on small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) at EMBL Hamburg. In this interview, he talks his ambitions for the future work of the SAXS Team, his passion for science, and a memorable ‘aha’ moment he had in his early career.

2023

lab-matters

7 July 2023 InterPro logo

InterPro 95.0 released

Updates from data resources InterPro version 95.0 and InterProScan 5.63-95.0 are now available! InterPro now features hundreds of new methods integrated from partner databases, and InterProScan draws on over 39000 entries. InterPro version 95.0 – new features include: InterPro 95.0 covers 81.7% of UniProt Knowledgebase…

2023

updates-from-data-resources

4 July 2023 EMBL logo amended to note its upcoming 50th anniversary

Save the date: 4-5 July 2024!

Events EMBL will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2024 with a dynamic scientific symposium. The event will share fundamental research that continues to open the way to scientific discoveries.

2023

events

3 July 2023 In the foreground: an intrinsically disordered protein, which has a form of a tangled, unstructured string. In the background: a set of parallel curved lines.

Bringing research on disordered proteins to order

Science A third of all known proteins are either completely or partially unstructured. EMBL scientists contributed to a new set of guidelines – Minimum Information About a Disorder Experiment (MIADE) – that will help researchers share data on unstructured proteins in a more useful way and will enable…

2023

science

28 June 2023 Female scientist in white lab coat enjoying camaraderie of colleagues.

After EMBL: Urtė Neniškytė

Alumni EMBL Rome alumna Urtė Neniškytė returned to her native Lithuania, helping establish the Vilnius University-EMBL Partnership Institute and advance genome-editing technologies there.

2023

alumni

22 June 2023 Woman stands in front of railing.

Welcome: Sihem Bennour

Lab Matters Sihem Bennour, new head of HR, foresees a deeper culture of information sharing, listening, and problem solving with EMBL staff.

2023

lab-matters

25 May 2023 Close-up photo of a mother and father with their two young daughters

After EMBL: Heiko Runz and Laurence Ettwiller

Alumni From biking together while at EMBL to assistant professorships at Heidelberg University, two academics soon formed a union that took them to the United States., into various industry positions, and now to a life with two young children.

2023

alumni

15 May 2023 Science illustration representing research on organoids, organs-on-chip and human health. The image shows an abstract composition of several elements referring to the tools and some areas of research covered at EMBL Barcelona, featured on the cover of the 100th issue of EMBL etc.

100th issue of EMBLetc. published

Lab Matters First published in 1999 as a black-and-white printed newsletter for EMBL staff and alumni, EMBLetc. has undergone many transformations in its 24 years of existence.

2023

lab-matters

15 May 2023 Decorative elements on a green background, representing awards.

Awards and honours (Issue 100)

EMBLetc The work and excellence of EMBL researchers have been recognised with multiple awards and honours during the past six months. Here are some of the awardees.

2023

15 May 2023 Science illustration representing research on organoids, organs-on-chip and human health. The image shows an abstract composition of several elements referring to the tools and some areas of research covered at EMBL Barcelona, featured on the cover of the 100th issue of EMBL etc.

Celebrating 100 issues of EMBLetc.

EMBLetc First published in 1999 as a black-and-white printed newsletter for EMBL staff and alumni, EMBLetc. has undergone many transformations in its 24 years of existence.

2023

15 May 2023 A computer showing the EMBLetc. homepage open, with a few EMBLetc. magazines and postcards nearby.

A trip down memory lane

EMBLetc EMBLetc., the online magazine of Europe’s life sciences laboratory, celebrates its 24th birthday with its 100th issue. We took a walk through the past issues of this dynamic publication, and here are 10 recurring themes that emerged.

2023

15 May 2023 Two scientists in a laboratory

Behind the scenes of innovation

EMBLetc EMBL Grenoble technology teams provide a sneak peek into their latest collaborative project in structural biology services: the complete automation of an integral step in X-ray crystallography.

2023

15 May 2023 A section of electron microscopy volume of a Platynereis larvae. Different colours mark different cell groups.

Visualising biology: new tools of the trade

EMBLetc EMBL researchers are pushing the frontiers of big data analysis in biological imaging, allowing scientists to gain a many-layered and multidimensional view of organisms, tissues, and cells in action.

2023

15 May 2023 Researcher holding two sample bags..

In pictures: the story of TREC

EMBLetc EMBL’s newest expedition attempts to answer some of the biggest questions in planetary biology, and will help scientists find solutions to pressing global concerns.

2023

15 May 2023 Male scientist profile image

Merging science and theatre

EMBLetc Veli Vural Uslu, winner of the 2023 John Kendrew award, chats about his journey in science and his adventures in science communication. Uslu is the writer, director, and organiser of various science-themed theatre plays, and the founder of TAP (The Awesome Potatoes) Science Theater Heidelberg.

2023

11 May 2023 An colourful image taken from the World of Molecular Biology exhibition.

The World of Molecular Biology is open 

Lab Matters EMBL´s new permanent exhibition ‘The World of Molecular Biology’ in Heidelberg is now open for registration. The exhibition takes the visitor on a journey of scales, from genomes to ecosystems, and introduces key imaging technologies.

2023

lab-matters

10 May 2023 Illustration showing a cute humanoid-shaped robot that spits pink droplets at a sheet.

Time-resolved crystallography for the masses

Science EMBL Hamburg scientists have contributed to the development of the Spitrobot, a ground-breaking experimental setup that will simplify creating molecular movies. The Spitrobot automates the sample preparation for time-resolved crystallography, which is used to create 3D snapshots of protein…

2023

science

28 April 2023 two students wear virtual reality headsets

Building a broader European science community

Lab Matters Croatian scientists and students from the Ruđer Bošković Institute and University of Zagreb visited EMBL to exchange ideas with researchers and public outreach experts on ways to increase interest, awareness, and involvement in science.

2023

lab-matters

28 April 2023 Group photograph of people facing the camera holding certificates.

EMBL celebrates 43 new PhDs

Events On Friday 21 April 2023, EMBL held a graduation ceremony to celebrate its newest group of PhDs who graduated during the last 12 months. The graduating class comprised 43 fellows representing 17 nationalities and all six EMBL sites.

2023

events

20 April 2023 Photo of a human hand introducing a small element into a machine at the SPC Facility.

EMBL Hamburg joins northern European life science consortium

Lab Matters EMBL Hamburg partners with the Hanseatic Life Science Research Infrastructure Consortium (HALRIC) to enhance life sciences research in Scandinavia and northern Germany. The consortium builds on the HALOS project to foster collaborations between industry, hospitals, and universities, leveraging…

2023

lab-matters

17 April 2023 Photo of EMBL alumni in current lab in Spain

After EMBL: Thomas Graf

Alumni Alumnus Thomas Graf reflects on his time at EMBL, offering an update on his whereabouts and advice for young scientists.

2023

alumni

12 April 2023 Photo of Eduard Avetisyan smiling and standing next to the servers at EMBL Hamburg.

We are EMBL: Eduard Avetisyan on the role of IT in structural biology

Lab Matters Eduard Avetisyan leads the EMBL Hamburg IT team. He joined EMBL after transitioning from particle physics research to IT. Besides providing standard IT user support, his team also enables smooth processing and computational analysis of structural biology data. Here, he talks about the joys and…

2023

lab-matters

4 April 2023 A mobile lab on a road, with the TREC logo on the side.

TREC is underway!

Events, Science EMBL’s planetary biology flagship TREC expedition has officially started. The new project applies EMBL's expertise and technologies in molecular and cellular biology to current environmental challenges, and connects with a wide range of research disciplines.

2023

eventsscience

4 April 2023 Title slide for the conference, The organism and its environment

Life in context

Events Upcoming EMBO/EMBL symposium provides a forum to explore how organisms function together, and how they react or adapt to changes at different molecular levels.

2023

events

3 April 2023 Two male scientists with safety glasses at EMBL Imaging Centre

Dispensing microscopy expertise

Lab Matters Home to some of Europe’s most cutting-edge tools in molecular biology, EMBL has long shared its expertise and access to these tools through an extensive repertoire of courses, conferences, seminars, and other training. And now included in this mix is a job shadowing programme at EMBL Imaging…

2023

lab-matters

30 March 2023 Profile picture of Cornelius Gross, interim head of EMBL Rome

ERC Advanced Grant awarded to EMBL Rome researcher

Lab Matters Interim head of EMBL Rome Cornelius Gross has been awarded an Advanced grant from the European Research Council (ERC) for his project TERRITORY, aimed at investigating the neural basis of territorial aggression and fear.

2023

lab-matters

29 March 2023 Photographs of two male scientists in circular insets against a decorative background

EMBL Alumni Awards Announced for 2023

Alumni Two former EMBL scientists have been recognised for their outstanding contributions to the fields of science communication and multiple sequence alignment research, respectively.

2023

alumni

23 March 2023 Portrait of a person looking at the camera. In the background there are trees and a white building

Welcome: Alejandro Torres-Sánchez

Lab Matters The new group leader is setting up the first purely theory-focused research group at EMBL Barcelona. He aims to understand fundamental biological principles using mathematical models and computer simulations, in close collaboration with experimental researchers across EMBL.

2023

lab-matters

22 March 2023 Artistic representation that features a long, winding helix joining together a doughnut-figure to a small shaggy ball to indicate the connections long-read sequencing can make about DNA mutations.

The ‘long read’ for cancer

Science Using Oxford Nanopore long-read sequencing, EMBL scientists sequenced a primary childhood brain tumour known as a medulloblastoma, uncovering a novel complex mutation pattern.

2023

science

21 March 2023 Male scientist in blue shirt standing in front of a building with glass doors.

Welcome: Thomas Quail

Lab Matters New group leader Thomas Quail studies the fundamental processes that determine how proteins organise the genome inside a cell.

2023

lab-matters

20 March 2023 Team leader Gergely Papp.

Welcome: Gergely Papp

Lab Matters Together with his team, Gergely Papp pushes the frontiers of technology development in the field of structural biology.

2023

lab-matters

17 March 2023 Liz Duke standing on the left side of the photo, with EMBL Hamburg's P14 beamline and a big screen on the right.

Molecules to Ecosystems: Liz Duke on X-ray imaging

Lab Matters Biological X-ray imaging is an emerging technology that uses X-rays to image tissues or even entire organisms. It will play an important role in EMBL Hamburg’s future service portfolio, and will allow studying life on multiple scales. Team Leader Liz Duke discusses her plans to establish X-ray…

2023

lab-matters

7 March 2023 Black and white photograph showing a group of scientists standing in frnot of a building.

Tracing the history of women in science at EMBL

Lab Matters On the occasion of International Women’s Day 2023, EMBL archivist Maria Papanikolaou discusses the traces left by the women in science who have passed through EMBL, irrevocably changing the organisation in small and big ways.

2023

lab-matters

7 March 2023 InterPro logo

New releases: InterPro 93.0 and InterProScan 5.61-93.0

Updates from data resources InterPro now features hundreds of new methods integrated from partner databases, and InterProScan draws on over 38,000 entries. InterPro version 93.0 InterPro 93.0 integrates 300 new methods from the CDD (261), PANTHER (12), PROSITE profiles (17), SMART (9), TIGRFAMs (1) databases, and covers 81.7%…

2023

updates-from-data-resources

1 March 2023 Moisés Bueno is standing next to the transfer robot. The robot has a form of a yellow robotic arm on a stand. Behind is the CrystalDirect™ Harvester, which is a white cuboid with two transparent dimmed windows for laser protection.

Biology meets engineering

Lab Matters Physicists, engineers and robotics experts work together in EMBL Hamburg’s Instrumentation Team to design instruments that support structural biology research. The team has finished a transfer robot that facilitates automated handling of protein crystals with care and precision. This will help…

2023

lab-matters

23 February 2023 Decorative image

New Job Dispatcher website launched

Updates from data resources EMBL-EBI’s Software Development and Operations team is delighted to announce the launch of a brand-new Job Dispatcher website, currently in development.  The updated website provides a landing page for the Job Dispatcher services, making it easier for users to find and navigate services…

2023

updates-from-data-resources

15 February 2023 A photo of a scientist operating one of the instruments at the EMBL SPC Facility.

Supporting scientists across Europe: the SPC Facility at EMBL Hamburg

Lab Matters EMBL Hamburg’s Sample Preparation and Characterisation (SPC) Facility offers scientists access to almost all available biophysics technologies. The facility’s staff provides advice and support with experiments and data analysis. The facility is conveniently located just next to the EMBL…

2023

lab-matters

13 February 2023 Female scientist stands in front of lab bench

Welcome: Hanh Vu

Lab Matters Group Leader Hanh Vu studies ‘immortal’ flatworms that can grow and de-grow to understand better factors that determine organisms’ sizes.

2023

lab-matters

7 February 2023 BII and EMBL logos are on a white band set against a wavy green background

Promoting European innovation in the life sciences

Lab Matters One of EMBL’s core missions is the development and transfer of scientific know-how and technologies to academia, industry, and commercial entities to facilitate further research, innovations, and commercialisation for the benefit of society at large. Working across Europe, EMBL has partnerships…

2023

lab-matters

9 January 2023

New molecular insights on medical cannabis

Science EMBL Grenoble researchers have investigated the interaction between THC and some proteins it might bind to. In a recent study, they showed in vitro that THC inhibits an important human enzyme called autotaxin.

2023

science

20 December 2022

First linked dataset on Pathogens Portal

Updates from data resources The first  cohort study linking data across categories was recently added on the Pathogens Portal Cohort Browser and is also accessible from the BioSamples browser. This pilot study comes from Erasmus Medical Centre through the ReCoDID project, one of the COVID-19 Data Platform supporting…

2022

updates-from-data-resources

16 December 2022 Group of around hundred people looking at the camera

EMBL in Spain: from EvoDevo to Tissues

Alumni More than a hundred scientists from across Spain and Europe met at the Andalusian Centre for Developmental Biology (CABD) for the 2022 “EMBL in Spain” event.

2022

alumni

12 December 2022 A mother and her child looking through a microscope

Celebrating science in Grenoble

Lab Matters In October 2022, EMBL Grenoble participated in the annual science outreach event Parvis des Sciences, organised by the GIANT campus under the umbrella of the French science week – La Fête de la science.

2022

lab-matters

8 December 2022 Image of Prof. Peter B. Becker in the laboratory

New chair of EMBL Council

Lab Matters EMBL alumnus and eminent molecular biologist Peter B. Becker has been named the next chair of EMBL’s Council as of January 2023.

2022

lab-matters

1 December 2022

Getting closer to stopping toxoplasmosis infection

Science Recent studies supported by EMBL Grenoble’s expertise in structural biology research and scientific services have identified Altiratinib as a potential drug to stop toxoplasmosis infection and opened up treatment options against malaria.

2022

science

30 November 2022 Portrait of Talya Dayton propped up on a balcony rail

Welcome to EMBL: Talya Dayton

Lab Matters The new group leader in Barcelona aims to understand how cells behave in health and in disease, and approaches her favourite hobby, cooking, very similarly to her work in the lab.

2022

lab-matters

21 November 2022 male scientist in green shirt and dark pants stands outside in front of tree

Welcome Jordi van Gestel

Lab Matters Looking to understand microbial predator-prey relationships, EMBL’s newest group leader tackles a molecular ‘arms race’ in his lab.

2022

lab-matters

18 November 2022 Group photo of speakers and organisers standing in front of a slide saying “Welcome to the DANEMO Symposium”.

Promoting EMBL opportunities for the Danish scientific community

Events DANEMO is a communication platform and research support initiative launched by DANDRITE at Aarhus University. It aims to encourage scientists in Denmark to engage with EMBL and EMBO. The DANEMO symposium from 3-4 November in Aarhus focused on raising awareness of the new EMBL programme ‘Molecules…

2022

events

17 November 2022 A graphic showing the logos of EMBL and the University of Malta

EMBL builds on links with Malta

Events EMBL deepens scientific collaboration, opening the door for greater engagement and opportunities for Malta’s life science community

2022

events

16 November 2022 A woman can be seen collecting samples from the shallow ocean, with mountains in the background

From coast to coast and beyond

EMBLetc EMBL researchers conducted a pilot project in Iceland as the final preparatory step before commencing their journey traversing European coastlines.

2022

16 November 2022

The power of a pesticide library

EMBLetc EMBL research groups apply molecular biology and its research tools to better understand agricultural pesticides

2022

16 November 2022 Female scientist photographed against a grey background

From academia to industry and back

EMBLetc Sara A. Courtneidge, recipient of the 2022 Lennart Philipson Award, reflects on the fundamental and translational research aspects of her career in cancer research

2022

16 November 2022 Decorative elements on a green background, representing awards.

Awards & honours

EMBLetc The work and excellence of EMBL researchers have been recognised with multiple awards and honours during the past year.

2022

3 November 2022 View from above of a small room with several tools, cables and pieces of technology. A rectangular box, a robotic arm and a device are highlighted in green.

Two in one: combining MASSIF-1 and CrystalDirect

Lab Matters Researchers and engineers have integrated a CrystalDirect harvester into the fully automated beamline MASSIF-1, a unique combination of structural biology technologies that is now open to external academic users.

2022

lab-matters

31 October 2022 Two photos of a cell nucleus with blue, bandage-like objects wrapped around a roundish nucleus. The photos show before and after a parasitic invasion, so few chromosomes remain afterwards.

Plankton zombies for Halloween!

Science Plankton parasites provide a zombie story perfect for Halloween. While invading single-celled plankton, these parasites devour the cell’s nucleus and hijack metabolism while the organism remains alive.

2022

science

21 October 2022 Ensembl logo in white circle on blue and green background

Ensembl 108 has been released

Updates from data resources We are pleased to announce the release of Ensembl 108, and the corresponding release of Ensembl Genomes 55 featuring changes in the human default tracks, new genomes in Ensembl Plants and Ensembl Metazoa, and the addition of mitochondrial annotation for Tasmanian devil. Genome assemblies and…

2022

updates-from-data-resources

21 October 2022 A female scientist in a blue dress stands in front of blurred woodsy background

Welcome: Flora Vincent

Lab Matters After a postdoc at Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, Flora Vincent has joined EMBL’s Developmental Biology unit to further explore the world of phytoplankton.

2022

lab-matters

12 October 2022 A group photo taken at the EMBL Heidelberg site, showing members of EMBL and the Ruder Boskovic Institute

EMBL deepens ties with Croatia

Events Visit of delegation from the Ruđer Bošković Institute to EMBL Heidelberg marks a new chapter in scientific and institutional cooperation

2022

events

11 October 2022 EMBL scientists sampling at the coastline of Iceland in August 2022

Examining life along Iceland’s coasts

Lab Matters The final pilot project in Iceland marked the countdown to the ‘Traversing European Coastlines’ (TREC) expedition to study coastal ecosystems and their response to changes in the environment.

2022

lab-matters

7 October 2022 A group of people at EMBL's partnership conference

The EMBL Connection

Events EMBL's Partnership Conference highlights the value of its networks, bringing researchers together to build new scientific connections.

2022

events

29 September 2022 young girl in lab coat

Tools for teachers

Lab Matters EMBL reminds teachers of freely available educational resources and workshops just in time for school.

2022

lab-matters

21 September 2022 Photo of the speakers during the panel discussion. Edith Heard is talking. In front of the panel, there is the audience seen from the back, and behind the panel there are banners with the DESY PETAR IV logos and a slide displaying the names of the panellists.

PETRA IV and future opportunities at EMBL Hamburg beamlines

Lab Matters EMBL joined a kick-off event focusing on the developments related to the upgrade of the PETRA III synchrotron storage ring to PETRA IV at the DESY campus, where EMBL Hamburg is located. PETRA IV could open new possibilities at EMBL Hamburg, contributing to the goals of the EMBL Programme…

2022

lab-matters

20 September 2022 8 representatives of both the Dieter Schwarz Foundation and EMBL are standing in the EMBL Imaging Centre foyer facing the camera

Life Science Alliance starts new chapter

Lab Matters Dieter Schwarz Foundation renews 3-year funding to EMBL for the EMBL | Stanford Life Science Alliance, a unique international collaboration bringing together researchers from the two leading institutions to develop transformative technologies and accelerate biomedical research.

2022

lab-matters

15 September 2022 The foreground shows two yellow pipes representing the human gastrointestinal tract coming together, representing the confluence of donor and recipient gut ecosystems. Bacteria can be seen as green shapes inside the pipes and various kinds of interactions between them are shown symbolically as a mixing of colours.

When microbiomes collide

Science EMBL researchers used data from over 300 human faecal microbiota transplants to gain an ecological understanding of what happens when two gut microbiomes clash.

2022

science

9 September 2022 Monochrome decorative image with the word "statement" on grey background.

In tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Announcements The United Kingdom is a founding member of EMBL, and has hosted EMBL’s European Bioinformatics Institute since 1994. We recognise that the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will have a profound impact on the country, and we extend our deepest sympathies to the Royal Family at this…

2022

announcements

9 September 2022 A female career advisor at computer participates in webinar

Insights into scientific careers

Events As the career landscape continues to change for PhDs and postdocs, the EMBL Fellows’ Career Service offers webinars that present professional options in and beyond academia.

2022

events

7 September 2022 Female scientist stands in laboratory setting

Augmenting science

Lab Matters The Scientific Visitor Programme shares EMBL tools and talent with outside researchers in collaborative, multidisciplinary environments.

2022

lab-matters

1 September 2022 4D reconstruction of a mouse limb with lateral and top view.

Building the ideal limb

Science EMBL researchers use a “fearless” computer reconstruction and a two-centuries-old mathematical approach to study limb bud growth.

2022

science

5 August 2022 A rod-like structure with green and magenta segments representing cellular markers.

Making patterns visible

Science How do gene expression patterns result in the generation of different cell types? Scientists at EMBL Heidelberg used the zebrafish notochord to find out.

2022

science

4 August 2022 An illustration provides representation of fingers hovering over a cell phone

Zooming in to get the full picture

Science EMBL and UW researchers plus additional collaborators have constructed a complete map of fruit fly embryonic development using machine learning. This research is foundational to better understanding overall embryo development in other species, including humans.

2022

science

20 July 2022 A woman stands in front of shelving filled with notebook binders.

Welcome: Maria Papanikolaou

Lab Matters EMBL’s new archive and records manager, Maria Papanikolaou, explains the dual role she and an additional colleague will have in the Office of Science Information Management.

2022

lab-matters

18 July 2022 Large, elongated purple molecule has an on/off switch on it pointed to on.

The retron switch

Science EMBL researchers now understand the function of an elusive small DNA in bacteria and have developed a tool that can be used to better understand what might ‘switch on’ bacterial immune defences.

2022

science

10 June 2022 A colourful structural model of the doughnut-shaped human nuclear pore complex seen from above.

Puzzling out the structure of a molecular giant

Science Scientists have solved several mysteries around the structure and function of a true molecular giant: the human nuclear pore complex. They created the most complete model of the complex thanks to combining the program AlphaFold2 with cryo-electron tomography, integrative modelling, molecular…

2022

science

7 June 2022 Female scientist photographed in a garden

Welcome: Pascale Cossart

Lab Matters Pascale Cossart, one of the world’s foremost authorities on the biology of Listeria, brings four decades of expertise in intracellular bacterial parasitism to EMBL as a visiting scientist.

2022

lab-matters

3 June 2022 he internal structure of a mitotic chromosome is shown with colourful threads representing DNA, one of which is shown being packaged into loops by the condensin protein complex. The background shows mitotic chromosomes in the cellular space

Shaping up the genome for cell division

Science Researchers have discovered the mechanism by which a family of DNA motor proteins packages loosely arranged strands of DNA into compact individual chromosomes during cell division.

2022

science

2 June 2022 BII and EMBL logos are on a white band set against a wavy green background

Teamed up to innovate

Lab Matters A new formal collaboration agreement enables will help smooth the transition from fundamental science to innovation.

2022

lab-matters

1 June 2022

EMBL in Italy event held at GSK Vaccines in Siena

Alumni The GSK Vaccines site in Siena hosted the annual EMBL in Italy event. The hybrid meeting brought together industry leaders, representatives from biotech start-ups, data scientists, and researchers from academia.

2022

alumni

18 May 2022 The visiting group from the Business Academy Aarhus during lunch at the EMBL Hamburg’s terrace

EMBL Hamburg is helping train lab techs of the future

Lab Matters Students from the Business Academy Aarhus visit EMBL Hamburg annually. Many of them return later as trainees to gain experience as lab technicians. EMBL Hamburg offers great opportunities to learn diverse techniques and work with various equipment. This experience helps them in their future jobs in…

2022

lab-matters

6 May 2022 Drawing of two chromosomes in which a highlighted area is switched around.

Flip-flop genome

Science Researchers at EMBL Heidelberg found that inversions in the human genome are more common than previously thought, which impacts our understanding of certain genetic diseases.

2022

science

5 May 2022 Colourful vertical panels each show different microscopic images possible with the high-tech tools in EMBL's Imaging Centre

Enabling imaging across scales

Events EMBL’s first Imaging Centre Symposium will occur onsite at EMBL and include tours of the new Imaging Centre on 31 May, introducing participants to the facility and its staff and featuring talks on the rapid developments in imaging technologies that have led to notable biological and medical…

2022

events

28 April 2022 Microsocopy image of Pair of somites. Blue is a nuclear marker (DAPI) and red is an apical marker (ZO-1).

Unravelling the origins of the human spine

Science Scientists at EMBL Barcelona have created for the first time a 3D in vitro model that recapitulates the periodic formation of human somites – structures that give rise to the spinal column.

2022

science

27 April 2022 Portrait of Kristina Djinović-Carugo

Next Head of EMBL Grenoble appointed

Lab Matters Professor Kristina Djinović-Carugo has been appointed as the next head of EMBL Grenoble. She will join EMBL in July from the Max Perutz Laboratories at the University of Vienna, where she is currently Head of the Department of Structural and Computational Biology and full Professor of Structural…

2022

lab-matters

27 April 2022 Kristina Djinović-Carugo sitting at her desk.

Meet the next Head of EMBL Grenoble

Lab Matters Slovenian structural biologist Kristina Djinović-Carugo will join EMBL in July as the new Head of EMBL Grenoble. We spoke to her about her background, research interests, and plans for EMBL Grenoble.

2022

lab-matters

8 April 2022 a metaphor for the process of epigenetic inheritance

A metaphor for epigenetic inheritance

Science Recent studies from the Hackett group at EMBL Rome have revealed new insights on the mechanism regulating transmission of non-genetic information during embryonic development, and inspired a scientific illustration

2022

science

23 March 2022 Two Drosophila embryos stained with fluorescent dye on a purple background that indicates either solid or liquid state

From liquid to solid to drive development

Science Condensates are membraneless organelles that control specific functions within a cell. Scientists at EMBL Heidelberg have shown how the physical state of condensates can influence biological function.

2022

science

20 March 2022 Portrait photo of EMBL Group Leader Judith Zaugg against a green background.

Judith Zaugg from EMBL Heidelberg receives ERC Consolidator Grant

Lab Matters Judith Zaugg, Group Leader at EMBL Heidelberg, has been awarded an ERC Consolidator Grant of €2 million funded under the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme. Over the next five years, the grant will enable her group to study cellular interactions in the human bone…

2022

lab-matters

17 March 2022 EMBL statement visual

EMBL’s statement on the invasion of Ukraine

Lab Matters EMBL condemns in the strongest terms the unjustified military invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation, with the support of Belarus, and the resulting loss of life and human suffering. We express our deepest sympathy to the Ukrainian people and to all the victims of this war.  As an…

2022

lab-matters

4 March 2022 Science art expressing the concept of transcriptional neighbourhoods regulating transcript isoform lengths and expression levels.

Understanding genomes, piece by piece

Science Genomes are made up of thousands of individual pieces – genes – which are expressed at different levels. Researchers at EMBL have shed light on how the placement of a gene affects its expression, as well as that of its neighbours.

2022

science

4 March 2022 A gloved hand holds a slide with visible wells containing Matrigel immersed in culture medium. A magnified close-up shows a mouse embryo developing over the course of 48 hours

A 3D culture model to study embryo growth

Science A recent study by EMBL researchers proposes a new method to grow early embryos in the laboratory. With a 3D culture set-up, scientists can closely monitor the changes embryos undergo around the time of implantation.

2022

science

2 March 2022 Image composition showing a building with sun reflecting off the glass and microscopy images of microorganisms in multiple colours.

‘The World of Molecular Biology’ exhibition

Lab Matters The new permanent ‘The World of Molecular Biology’ exhibition will open in mid-2023 at EMBL’s headquarters in Heidelberg. It will encourage people to actively engage with science and its relevance for everyday life.

2022

lab-matters

25 February 2022 Three colourful overlapping circles arranged in a row, a fruit-fly embryo being visible within each. Small circles within the embryos represent cell lineages.

Converging lenses on embryo development

Science Researchers from the Furlong group at EMBL have come up with a way to observe the development of fruit-fly embryos simultaneously at the genetic and cellular levels, generating a high-resolution and integrated view of how different cell lineages form.

2022

science

24 February 2022 Expression Atlas database logo - A magnifying glass highlighting a yellow section on a blue background

New Expression Atlas release in collaboration with PRIDE

Updates from data resources New Expression Atlas release features differential-proteomics and baseline-proteomics experiments in collaboration with the PRIDE team at EMBL-EBI. This also includes new baseline DIA proteomics experiments as well as new differential proteomics datasets.  To improve reproducibility,…

2022

updates-from-data-resources

23 February 2022 A photo of the campus of the Aarhus University buildings and green lawn.

Molecular medicine across borders

Lab Matters The 11th annual Nordic EMBL Partnership for Molecular Medicine meeting was hosted in virtual format by DANDRITE, the Danish node of the Partnership, from 31 January–2 February 2022. The programme included updates from all partnership nodes, discussions about opportunities for new collaborations,…

2022

lab-matters

23 February 2022 A male scientist in a white shirt stands at a walkway railing.

Welcome: Michael Dorrity

Lab Matters Michael Dorrity, one of EMBL’s newest group leaders, is studying how the environment influences early life stages in zebrafish.

2022

lab-matters

9 February 2022 The logos of EMBL and the Latvian Biomedical Research and Study Centre

EMBL and Latvia deepen collaboration

Events Agreement signed with Latvia’s Biomedical Research and Study Centre will boost academic exchange and collaboration on some of the largest challenges facing human and planetary health.

2022

events

1 February 2022 A photograph of the Amazonian lancehead snake Bothrops atrox

Decoding the secrets of snake venom

Science EMBL Hamburg’s Grzegorz Chojnowski from the Wilmanns Group developed software called findMySequence, which identifies proteins’ amino-acid sequences based on electron cryo-microscopy and X-ray crystallography data. It’s useful for identifying unknown proteins in samples from natural sources.

2022

science

21 January 2022 The cross-section of a cell expressing a green fluorescently tagged protein and illuminated by a blue laser is visible in the foreground, surrounded by a vortex of cells

Cell sorting enters a new dimension

Science EMBL researchers, in collaboration with BD Biosciences, have demonstrated a new technology that allows rapid image-based sorting of cells. The new technology represents a major upgrade to flow cytometry and has applications in diverse life science fields.

2022

science

14 January 2022 Woman standing next to a hedge

Welcome: Melissa Harrison

Lab Matters Melissa Harrison joins EMBL-EBI as the new Team Leader of Literature Services. We found out more about her plans for open access publishing and Europe PMC.

2022

lab-matters

3 January 2022 Mixture of life science symbols inside a circle set against background of green and blue

The start of a journey

Lab Matters This year marks the beginning of EMBL’s next programme ‘Molecules to Ecosystems’ to advance the understanding of life across scales and in the context of changing environments.

2022

lab-matters

22 December 2021 Scientific illustrations of MEG3, a very large RNA involved in cell proliferation. IAB and EMBL logos are located in the center of the illustration.

EMBL-IAB collaboration on the rise

Lab Matters The memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between EMBL and the Institute for Advanced Biosciences (IAB) a year ago has already catalysed new grants for joint research projects related to cancer and infection biology, thereby deepening collaborative activities.

2021

lab-matters

21 December 2021 A model of the doughnut-shaped nuclear pore complex. Individual molecules are marked in various colours.

Observing the secret life of molecules inside the cell

Science EMBL Hamburg’s Kosinski Group, the Beck Laboratory at the Max Planck Institute of Biophysics, and colleagues at EMBL Heidelberg recorded the nuclear pore complex contracting in living cells. They visualised the movement with an unprecedented level of detail with help of new software called…

2021

science

20 December 2021 Concentric circles and lines in different colours, representing fingerprints. Text: "Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Strategy."

Fostering diversity and equality

Lab Matters Showing a continued commitment to providing a diverse and inclusive organisation for conducting leading molecular biology research, EMBL has launched an Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) strategy.

2021

lab-matters

20 December 2021 A detailed structure map shows two proteins interacting in the foreground, each shown in a different colour. The background shows small green dots marking bacteria

Solving molecular puzzles to find the perfect fit

Science Using cryo-EM and structural biology techniques, EMBL researchers have shown how two proteins of Legionella pneumophila interact. This finding sheds light on a mechanism critical to the infection process and could lead to the development of new drugs to treat pneumonia.

2021

science

15 December 2021 An outline of Earth, covered with depictions of bacteria. The image of Earth is within a the frame of a computer window. There is an “Upload file” button on the bottom left, and a mouse cursor on the right.

Connecting the dots between bacterial genes around the world

Science Bork Group at EMBL Heidelberg analysed a new global gene database to study how genes emerge and spread across various habitats on our planet. In the future, the group will expand the database and use it for studying microbial gene evolution and dispersal at a finer-grained scale.

2021

science

9 December 2021 Colourful interwoven coils are displayed against a grid of small black and white photographic images.

A gallery of human RNA polymerases

Science New structural biology research provides fundamental information critical to understanding enzyme mutations connected to rare diseases and cancers.

2021

science

9 December 2021 Portrait photo of Eileen Furlong against blue-green background.

Eileen Furlong honoured with Leibniz Prize

Lab Matters EMBL Senior Scientist and Head of the Genome Biology Unit is among the researchers honoured for outstanding work by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG).

2021

lab-matters

8 December 2021 An illustration of the human gut, with coloured shapes representing bacteria. Three different drugs and drug combinations are shown affecting the bacteria, represented by changes in colour

The impact of drugs on gut microbes is greater than we thought

Science Researchers studying a massive cohort of European patients have found that commonly prescribed drugs for cardiometabolic disorders can have long-term effects on the gut microbiome. Such effects can complicate the understanding of how disease affects the microbiome and must be taken into…

2021

science

7 December 2021 A cartoon image showing a person's arm and a needle with a vaccine being injected into it. The text on the left reads: "EMBL research: How structural biologists at EMBL Hamburg help to develop and improve RNA vaccines"

How structural biology helps to make RNA vaccines

Science RNA vaccines, such as the ones for COVID-19, represent a new approach in vaccine technology. Cy Jeffries, faculty staff scientist at EMBL Hamburg, explains the clever technology behind RNA vaccines, and how structural biology contributes to its development. EMBL Hamburg collaborated on several…

2021

science

29 November 2021 Male scientist in front of blurred woodland background

Welcome: Niccolò Banterle

Lab Matters Using gene editing and three types of microscopy, one of EMBL’s newest group leaders is deciphering the functions of one of the smallest molecules involved in cell division, motility, and signalling, known as a centriole.

2021

lab-matters

25 November 2021 Female scientist in front of a background of green plants

Welcome: Maria Zimmermann-Kogadeeva

Lab Matters Maria Zimmermann-Kogadeeva is one of EMBL’s newest group leaders and a computational biologist whose research group applies computational modelling to better understand the metabolism of gut bacteria and their potential to have far-reaching impacts on other organs.

2021

lab-matters

24 November 2021 A man standing in front of hedges

Welcome: Tudor Groza

Lab Matters Tudor Groza joins EMBL-EBI as our new Phenomics Team Lead. We found out from Tudor exactly what this new role will entail

2021

lab-matters

15 November 2021 3D visualization of the vascularized placenta barrier model on-a-chip.

Building a 3D placenta on a chip

Lab Matters A new model could serve as a platform to investigate critical placenta barrier phenomena, including defence against bacteria, viruses, and parasites.

2021

lab-matters

9 November 2021 students looking a computer monitor and microscope

New horizons for the EIPP

Lab Matters EMBL's PhD and postdoc programmes evolve to the more multidisciplinary way of doing great molecular biology research.

2021

lab-matters

5 November 2021 A headshot photo of Ken Holmes from July 2021

Ken Holmes

Alumni Ken Holmes, outstanding pioneer of structural biology and founder of EMBL´s Hamburg site, died on 2 November 2021 at the age of 87.

2021

alumni

5 November 2021 Three-dimensional rendering of sponge neuroid cells (coloured orange) and sponge digestive cells (coloured green).

More than a gut reaction

Science What can sponges tell us about the evolution of the brain? Sponges have the genes involved in neuronal function in higher animals. But if sponges don’t have brains, what is the role of these? EMBL scientists imaged the sponge digestive chamber to find out.

2021

science

28 October 2021 female scientist sits in front of building

Welcome: Svetlana Dodonova

Lab Matters Svetlana Dodonova is one of EMBL's newest group leaders, leading a team of researchers who will study how genetic material is organised inside cells using structural biology approaches.

2021

lab-matters

25 October 2021 A collage of the visuals representing each of the three modules of the eSPC platform.

Biophysics analysis made easy with an online tool

Science EMBL Hamburg’s Sample Preparation and Characterisation (SPC) Facility has released eSPC, an online platform for analysing data from biophysical experiments. The platform enables the scientific community to analyse data from different experiments without the need to travel.

2021

science

22 October 2021 Oblong shape with two holes and coloured dots inside, representing phytoplankton cells and nitrogen-fixing bacteria

Analysis and sorting with flow cytometry

Lab Matters A technology around since the ‘60s, flow cytometry has increasing applications. New leadership at EMBL’s flow cytometry facilities is looking to ease use, expand training, and encourage more collaboration.

2021

lab-matters

15 October 2021 In the middle, there are two molecules of pUL21. One is blurred, to represent the molecule’s flexibility. In the background are two neuronal scenes. The one on the left is healthy and has a smooth surface. The one on the right is infected, which is represented by several green viral particles.

How herpes seizes proteins’ means of production

Science The Graham and Crump groups at the University of Cambridge and the Svergun Group at EMBL Hamburg have discovered a mechanism by which the herpes simplex virus takes control of the molecular machinery of human cells. Their work reveals how a dedicated viral protein hijacks key host proteins, forcing…

2021

science

13 October 2021 Illustration of a community of bacteria. Pills represent an antibiotic that can be used to treat an infection, and a second drug that could protect many gut bacteria from antibiotics.

Tackling the collateral damage from antibiotics

Science Researchers from EMBL’s Typas group and collaborators have analysed the effects of 144 antibiotics on the wellbeing of gut microbes. The study improves our understanding of antibiotics’ side effects and suggests a new approach to mitigating the adverse effects of antibiotics therapy on gut…

2021

science

7 October 2021 SARS-CoV-2 and planet Earth are merged together in this illustration

Six Ways to Protect the Planet Against Pandemics*

Events EMBL will host a conference to look at the state of the pandemic, lessons learned, and ways to improve pandemic preparedness. Here’s a sneak peek into what promises to be another interesting and informative EMBL conference.

2021

events

5 October 2021 Illustration of a globe with colourful shapes and symbols superimposed.

A cellular atlas of an entire worm

Science EMBL scientists and colleagues have developed an interactive atlas of the entire marine worm Platynereis dumerilii in its larval stage. The PlatyBrowser resource combines high-resolution gene expression data with volume electron microscopy images.

2021

science

4 October 2021 Logos of University of Tartu and EMBL with text: “memorandum of understanding”. Illustrations of microorganisms in the background.

EMBL strengthens links with Estonia

Lab Matters A memorandum of understanding (MoU) has been signed between EMBL and the University of Tartu, a leading centre of research and training. The MoU aims to strengthen cooperation between EMBL and the life science research community in Estonia.

2021

lab-matters

29 September 2021 Female scientist working at a biosafety cabinet, wearing a yellow protective gown and black gloves.

Transferable skills

Lab Matters In the lab, Diënty Hazenbrink works with microbes that live in our guts. In her free time, she enjoys wildlife photography. A shared set of skills facilitates both activities.

2021

lab-matters

23 September 2021 Pink and blue dominate a blurry image against a black background that is actually a global image of a 30-day-old Octopus vulgaris

The secret life of baby octopuses

Science Some of the most amazing creatures live in the deep blue sea. The Mesoscopic Imaging Facility (MIF) at EMBL Barcelona was recently involved in studying one unique feature of the octopus: the ephemeral structures on the surface of their skin called Kölliker’s organs.

2021

science

22 September 2021 Logos of EMBL and Helmholtz Association on white background, over a green-and-blue pattern in the background.

EMBL and Helmholtz Health join forces

Lab Matters EMBL and Helmholtz Association have signed a memorandum of understanding. The expanded collaboration of both institutions will focus on research related to health.

2021

lab-matters

15 September 2021 A dark blue classic star map view is overlaid upon scientific data

Charting a multi-omic universe

Science A research collaboration used machine learning to map tumour molecular make-up, potentially paving way to more customised cancer treatment.

2021

science

9 September 2021 Portrait of former EMBL Director General Iain Mattaj

German Cross of Merit for former EMBL Director General

Alumni Former EMBL Director General Professor Iain Mattaj was awarded the German Cross of Merit (‘Verdienstkreuz 1. Klasse des Verdienstordens der Bundesrepublik Deutschland’) at a ceremony held at EMBL Heidelberg on 9 September 2021.

2021

alumni

8 September 2021 Illustration of two halves of a pill, which releases chemical molecules that are taken up by gut bacteria in the vicinity.

Common medications accumulate in gut bacteria

Science A new collaborative study led by EMBL group leaders Kiran Patil, Nassos Typas, and Peer Bork has found that common medications accumulate in human gut bacteria. This process reduces drug effectiveness and affects the metabolism of common gut microbes, thereby altering the gut microbiome.

2021

science

7 September 2021 Close up of the interior of a light-sheet microscope, featuring optical equipment and a transparent cube.

A flip book for biological systems

Science In the Mesoscopic Imaging Facility (MIF) at EMBL Barcelona, researchers study the details of biological systems in the context of organs, body parts, or entire organisms. This image shows OPTiSPIM1, one of the custom light-sheet microscope setups available at the facility.

2021

science

20 August 2021 Liz Duke in front of the PETRA III synchrotron.

Welcome: Liz Duke

Lab Matters The new team leader at EMBL Hamburg talks about her plans to establish biological X-ray imaging and high-throughput tomography.

2021

lab-matters

3 August 2021 illustration of health care providers around a big heart

All heart

Alumni A community of scientists is looking at the estimated three billion heart muscle cells in a human heart to better understand heart disease.

2021

alumni

13 July 2021 From right to left, Ilaria Piazza and Ken Holmes’ portraits are side by side in circles on a greenish background

EMBL Alumni Awards 2021

Alumni EMBL alumni Ilaria Piazza and Ken Holmes have been recognised for their outstanding contributions, and will receive their awards as part of the celebrations for EMBL World Alumni Day.

2021

alumni

9 July 2021 Melissa Graewert stands in front of steely machine

From antibodies to nanoplastics

Science EMBL’s Melissa Graewert and colleagues are taking a structural biologist’s approach to better understanding nanoplastic particles.

2021

science

8 July 2021 Two men stand outside in front of a building, holding a document and looking at it.

A hidden medal

Alumni We all like a story about rediscovering treasures, right? Well, that’s just what happened recently at EMBL Grenoble!

2021

alumni

23 June 2021 Bright blue oblong shape with white hairs on surface on black background.

Starlet sea anemone

Picture of the week EMBL PhD student Anniek Stokkermans captured this side view of a Nematostella vectensis larva during this transition, using instrumentation in the Advanced Light Microscopy Facility at EMBL Heidelberg.

2021

picture-of-the-week

22 June 2021 Woman stands at brown railing in front of trees

Welcome: Anna Erzberger

Lab Matters Anna Erzberger, one of EMBL’s newest group leaders, will provide unique perspective as a theoretical biological physicist.

2021

lab-matters

8 June 2021 Two scientists in lab coats working on an instrument in the lab.

EMBL external research community survey

Lab Matters EMBL is conducting an Impact Assessment of our experimental services to understand the value these services have for our external user community. If you have accessed EMBL experimental services at one or more of our facilities to support the conduct of your research, we would like to hear from you.

2021

lab-matters

8 June 2021 Purple, blue and yellow dots on a black background.

Dream team

Picture of the week At EMBL, we have many dream teams – groups of individuals who support each other, innovate, and work together. One of those dream teams bridges two core facilities at EMBL Rome.

2021

picture-of-the-week

4 June 2021 Man in white shirt and blue jeans standing on a terrace in front of trees, facing the camera.

The power of community

Lab Matters EMBL Director Matthias Hentze describes the Environmental Research Initiative: a community effort to solve global environmental challenges.

2021

lab-matters

3 June 2021 Illustration of a rocky coastline with sailing boat, mountains, underwater organisms, bridge and factory in the background.

Living laboratories

Science Under the innovative Planetary Biology research theme, EMBL scientists aim to understand life in the context of its environment.

2021

science

1 June 2021 Two purple and white spheres against dark background.

Nuclear twins

Picture of the week Captured by EMBL postdoc Arina Rybina, these ‘nuclear twins’ are two daughter nuclei straight after division of a HeLa cell.

2021

picture-of-the-week

25 May 2021 Microscope image of an engineered human blood vessel, featuring individual cells outlined in pink with blue nuclei.

Barriers against malaria

Picture of the week The Bernabeu Group aims to increase our knowledge of cerebral malaria, using in vitro engineered networks of human blood vessels and brain cells.

2021

picture-of-the-week

21 May 2021 Image of a mosquito on a clear surface

EMBL scientists support malaria research

Science EMBL scientists support research on malaria by providing freely available data resources and using innovative experimental approaches. Our Course and Conference Office facilitates the exchange of knowledge in the field by hosting the annual BioMalPar conference.

2021

science

5 May 2021 Woman sits at desk in office setting

After the lecture: Zehra Sayers

Alumni Zehra Sayers explains what makes the SESAME synchrotron special, why we should not fear failure, and why curiosity is her biggest driver.

2021

alumni

28 April 2021 Artistic representation of brain and DNA

Uniting strengths to expand research

Lab Matters The European Molecular Biology Laboratory and the Italian Institute of Technology have signed an agreement to expand the scope of their collaboration to include areas of mutual interest and in the context of EMBL’s 2022-2026 Programme “Molecules to Ecosystems”.

2021

lab-matters

27 April 2021 Microscope image of liver cells, highlighted in various colours.

Painting liver cells

Picture of the week A page from a biologist’s colouring book? EMBL’s new interior wall design? Not quite – a bunch of liver cells, grown in the lab so that scientists can learn about fatty liver disease, or steatosis.

2021

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20 April 2021 Black-and-white sphere with coronavirus spike protein structures and a two-layered ring of virus membrane superimposed.

Variations on a spike

Picture of the week What does coronavirus’s spike protein look like in 3D? EMBL scientists and colleagues used cryo-electron tomography and molecular dynamics simulations to find out.

2021

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13 April 2021 EMBL Heidelberg's main building, the top of the façade lit up by sunlight.

Morning sun

Picture of the week Throwback to June 2014: While EMBL Heidelberg’s main entrance is still in the dark, the well-known EMBL logo is already lit by the morning sun.

2021

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30 March 2021 Ana Boskovic sitting in her office

Welcome: Ana Boskovic

Lab Matters The new group leader at EMBL Rome will study how embryos can inherit non-genetic information from their parents that causes stable and heritable effects

2021

lab-matters

30 March 2021 A close-up photo of a shiny droplet of liquid that has been placed into one of the wells of a crystallisation plate.

Droplet beauty

Picture of the week Scientists at EMBL Hamburg use droplets of protein solution to grow protein crystals. By exposing the crystals to X-rays, they are able to determine the protein’s molecular structure.

2021

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23 March 2021 Man pouring water in a glass bottle to make coffee.

Green coffee at EMBL

Picture of the week The cafeteria at EMBL Heidelberg now offers espresso and cappuccino with a more intense flavour and which are produced in a ‘green’ way.

2021

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16 March 2021 Pink blooming tree in front of functional building.

Italian Spring

Picture of the week EMBL’s site in Monterotondo has recently been blessed with blue skies and sunshine, leading to trees blooming early on campus.

2021

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