The Biochemical Society provides an extensive range of events, including scientific conferences, training events, outreach activities, medal lectures, and policy and education events. This programme provides an excellent opportunity to magnify your research by submitting an abstract for an oral communication or poster presentation, and sharing your work with the wider molecular biosciences community.
All of the day
Introduction to public engagement and science policy
To communicate beyond the lab requires a different set of skills. In this online course ‘Introduction to Public Engagement and Science Policy’, we will explore how the molecular biosciences can contribute to UK policy, and share tools that can be used to engage the public effectively.
This course is ideal for early to late career bioscientists who wish to learn more about science policy and public engagement. Each module will be around 2 hours.
The course modules will cover:
Introduction to science communication
Science in policy-making – a guide to the UK landscape
Public engagement activities
Evaluation of impact
You will have access to the module for one year, and lead educators will reply to your comments in the first 6 weeks, so you’re encouraged to complete the course during this time.
R for Biochemists 101 aims to equip early career researchers with the information, tools and techniques to use R. It is suited to beginners that want to use the programming software but have little or no experience.
The course will focus on getting data in R, manipulating and visualizing them using various methods. Each module will use a biochemical experiment and data as a starting point.
The course is divided in 5 modules:
Draw a protein standard curve using base R and ggplot2
Extracting data from objects
Drawing an enzyme kinetics plot
Customizing and reusing plots with R
Getting your data into R for exploration
The estimated time of completion for each module is one hour, however participants will be able to learn at their own pace and will benefit from the interaction with the course lead educator and other fellow participants. Dr Paul Brennan will reply to your comments and queries for six weeks. After this time, you’ll be able to still access the course, but the interaction with the course leader won’t be available.
This two-day event is aimed at anyone teaching in higher education in the molecular biosciences, from early career lecturers to established professors. The course aims to share best practice and novel ideas with higher educators, to equip students with the skills they need to succeed in their careers. The event will comprise of lectures, group discussions and poster presentations from attendees. ‘Evolving molecular bioscience education’ is supported by Heads of University Biosciences (HUBS).
Developing skills within a bioscience curriculum
Students as co-producers
Assessment and feedback
Education research across Europe
Attending this event will help colleagues working towards various levels of fellowship of the HEA. Being a delegate and participating in the event is evidence of the A5 and V3 dimensions of the UKPSF. In addition, there will be many ideas shared that, if implemented by delegates, could contribute to a number of the other dimensions.
07 April – 08 April
All of the day
Protein modelling and its applications in current science
The purpose of this training event is to familiarise participants with approaches and computational programmes to generate 3D models of proteins where no structural data is available. Additionally, an introduction to molecular docking will be given. An emphasis will be placed on critically evaluating the usefulness of models and modelling in general for solving scientific problems.
This hands-on course is aimed at early career scientists, such as PhD students and PostDocs, and established scientists who are interested in applying computational approaches to their research in the fields of protein science, molecular health, medicinal chemistry and structural biology.
20 April – 22 April
All of the day
3rd UK Workshop on membrane proteins: solubilisation and biophysical characterisation
This three-day training event for early career researchers will focus on the function on biological membranes and on the biophysical techniques available to study their components in the context of biology and biotechnology. The event will comprise lectures, computer and laboratory-based practical sessions. Participants will leave the event with new knowledge and protocols that will allow them to use biophysical techniques for studying components of biological membranes in their research.
High throughput membrane protein expression
Membrane protein purification
Structural determination via circular dichroism, crystallography and EM
Lipid nanoparticles and their analysis.
Lipidomics via mass spectroscopy
Biophysical analyses including NMR and neutron scattering.
This training event will be followed by the ‘European SMALP meeting 2020’.
The application of styrene-maleic acid (SMA) co-polymers to extract small discs of membrane, termed SMA lipid particles (SMALPs), has changed the established landscape of research in biological membranes. Membrane proteins play a vital role in cellular communication and the control of transport across the membrane, making them key therapeutic targets for many human diseases. Their location within the membrane, tightly packed with so many different proteins and lipids has, until now, made them extremely challenging to study. By allowing membrane proteins to be purified and studied whilst maintaining their lipid environment, the SMALP methodology enables the study of membrane protein structure and function using techniques that were previously impractical.
New applications of SMALPs are rapidly emerging making membrane protein study more accessible and widespread. This meeting will explore the latest developments within the field, including novel polymers, techniques and targets, bringing together a wide range of researchers to share their findings.
03 May – 07 May
All of the day
FEBS3+ Meeting: 86th Harden Conference – Machines on Genes
From bacteria to eukaryotes, cells have evolved a remarkable battery of enzymes to deal with the mechanical and topological challenges presented by nucleic acid production, processing and maintenance. A clear view of the biology of the genetic material requires a molecular understanding of how these enzymes function. Such an understanding will enhance our ability to manipulate genome structure and gene expression.
The theme of this meeting revolves around the mechanisms of these enzymes, with particular emphasis on research that integrates structural, biochemical, biophysical and computational approaches. With recent technological advances in imaging (i.e., single-molecule and cryo-electron microscopies), we expect to witness a flourish of key biological systems to be characterised with unprecedented detail.
The meeting will cover many of the molecular mechanisms by which large macromolecular machines carry out a diverse range of nucleic acid processes including DNA replication and repair, gene transcription and regulation, RNA processing and splicing, translation, nucleic acids structures and chromatin structure and epigenetic mechanisms. The meeting will also explore new quantitative techniques as well as theoretical approaches.
All of the day
Practical Python for beginners: a Biochemist’s guide
An increase in the complexity and scale of biochemical data has created many opportunities for biochemists to exploit data visualisation, modelling and machine learning methods in knowledge discovery. Leveraging such power requires at least some coding which can be a daunting prospect for many biochemists.
The online course aims to support researchers at any career stage to learn the core skills which underlie the application of Python to complex, real-world research problems. ‘Practical Python for beginners: a Biochemist’s guide’ was developed by an experienced team of Python trainers and early career researchers with first-hand experience of learning Python for biochemical problems, based at the University of York.
The course is designed to take approximately 5 hours and is divided into small chunks that can be tackled at the learner’s own pace. Learners have the opportunity to interact with each other and the course trainers. No previous coding experience is required.
The successful learner will be able to:
explain the rationale for scripting
use the IPython command line as a calculator and to assign variables
use the basic data types and some simple functions
create lists and select elements from them
explain what a library is, import a Python library and use functions it contains
read biochemical data from a file into a Python
understand computing concepts such as what is meant by the working directory, absolute and relative paths and be able to apply these concepts to data import
analyse and visualise biochemical data using powerful Python packages such as NumPy, Pandas, Sklearn and Matplotlib
Current trends in drug discovery provides a rare opportunity for scientists to hear about drug discovery disciplines outside of their own experience and to get a broader understanding of where their work fits in drug discovery.
Translation is an essential highly conserved process which is required for the synthesis of proteins in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. This unique annual UK scientific meeting enable discussing the latest progress in this field and fostering collaborations between researchers.
This year’s meeting will cover a wide range of topics related to translation, including:
mechanistic basis of regulation
upstream signal transduction cascades
ribosome structure and function
structure of translation factors/complexes and regulatory factor
genome-wide investigation of translation
RNA/tRNA modifications and localisation
The conference is also an important forum for young researchers at PhD and postdoctoral levels, providing opportunities for to deliver oral and poster presentations to promote their research. As part of the programme, we will host a dedicated Early Career Researcher event to promote further networking amongst this group.
The course is aimed at anyone teaching or supporting teaching in bioscience at Higher Education, from early career to experienced lecturers, interested in embedding relevant technology in their practice to improve students’ learning. The course will be informed by evidence and will include case studies and online discussions among participants, who will be encouraged to share their experiences.
The course is composed of five modules:
E-portfolios for evidencing professional practice
Supporting assessment and feedback through digital technologies
Online test: different approaches to enhance student learning
Using your VLE to support teaching
Making the most of the tools in your VLE
Discussions among participants and with lead educators will be central to the course, and delegates will have the opportunity to share their experiences by posting case studies outlining how they use technology in their teaching and what works best for them.
Completing this course will help colleagues working towards various levels of fellowship of the HEA.
Mutations in Leucine-Rich Repeat Kinase 2 (LRRK2) are the most common genetic cause of Parkinson’s disease (PD), responsible for up to 2-3% of all PD cases in the UK and up to 40% in some populations. Coupled with its clear genetic links to PD, LRRK2’s status as a complex, multi-domain kinase has led to this protein being flagged as one of the most promising drug targets for Parkinson’s disease.
The field is witnessing major advances in our understanding of the function of LRRK2 and its role in human disease and is the focus for this year’s biennial scientific meeting on LRRK2.
The conference programme will explore the genetic forms of PD, the LRRK2 gene and the LRRK2 protein, as well as the basic LRRK2 signalling mechanisms and physiological and pathological functions of LRRK2. In addition, non-neuronal LRRK2 signalling, particularly with respect to neuroinflammation and the immune system in PD, will be covered, as well as the role of LRRK2 in non-PD conditions.
We are welcoming abstracts for both oral communications and poster presentations, from both industry and academia and across all career stages. The meeting will be of particular interest to those working in biochemistry, neuroscience, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.
Ribosome profiling is still a relatively new technique. Although many people perform these types of experiments, there is still a small number of groups that have successfully published results and there are currently no standard analysis pipelines in the field.
This one-day workshop is aimed at PhD students and postdoctoral researchers and will provide an excellent training platform for scientists who are planning their ribosome profiling experiments, and those struggling with either wet lab or computational trouble shooting. It will offer a collaborative environment to share knowledge on many of the technical aspects of ribosome profiling, both practical and bioinformatic.
The course will combine short technical presentations with discussions and questions aimed to help both individuals planning or just starting experiments, and those that are in the middle of analysis and would like further support.
*Please note that delegates are required to bring their own laptops.
06 July – 09 July
All of the day
Small G proteins in cellular signalling and disease
Small G proteins of the Ras superfamily regulate a plethora of cell signalling pathways and impact on most biological processes. Deregulation of these proteins and their pathways often results in disease, such as cancer and genetic disorders, and plays a role in infection by pathogenic organisms.
This conference will gather renowned experts to discuss research covering all five families of small G proteins, to highlight recent advances in understanding the molecular mechanisms of small G protein function, and to generate new ideas, collaborations and scientific strategies from diverse inputs. This will include the Ras family, involved in cell growth, the Rho family, which drive cytoskeletal rearrangements, the Arf and Rab families, which play a role in vesicle trafficking and Ran, which is responsible for nuclear transport.
Personalised medicine and molecular medicine are predicated on the use of high-throughput genomics technologies and their associated analyses.
This three-day training event, suitable for those interested in computational biology, provides a rare opportunity to acquire hands-on experience to conduct metagenomics analyses using high-performance computing (HPC). Ideally, delegates would have either a biological or a computing background, not both are necessary. The course will comprise of lectures, workshops and small group tutorial sessions to perform microbial diversity data analysis using HPC.
Introduction to Microbiomes and 16S rDNA
Introduction to Next Generation Sequencing
Getting to know your dataset
Computing and High-Performance Computing
Comparison of data and summary of findings
Delegates will apply at least two different bioinformatic pipelines to raw sequence data that has been obtained from Next Generation Sequencing of a conserved region of the encoding the 16S bacterial ribosomal RNA. These pipelines will be run on supercomputers at high-performance computing facilities in the UK (EPCC in Edinburgh), at surfSARA in The Netherlands, at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center and in the cloud (AWS/Azure). Access to supercomputing resources will be provided for the duration of the course.
This event is organised by Prof Andrea Townsend-Nicholson, Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology at UCL.
*Please note that delegates are required to bring their own laptops.
Without a template, the biosynthesis of glycans heavily relies on the organisation of enzymes in the Golgi apparatus. In addition, glycan functions often feedback on important basic cell biological processes such as membrane trafficking and signalling. Therefore, understanding the interfaces between intracellular organisation and glycobiology is crucial to provide new tools and understanding for the functional investigation of glycans.
This scientific meeting will bring together glycoscientists with cell biologists to foster new ideas and collaborations between both disciplines. A range of topics from traditional cell and glycobiology through analytics and synthetic carbohydrate chemistry all the way to systems level studies will be explored at the event to encourage more joined-up thinking.
This is a joint between The Biochemical Society and The British Society for Research on Ageing (BSRA).
Estimates suggest that globally there will be over 2.1 billion people aged over 60 by 2050. Increased age is the major risk factor for multiple diseases including cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and neurodegeneration. New strategies to help ensure improved health in older people are therefore urgently needed.
Research has shown that common underlying biological processes, such as nutrient signalling and cellular metabolism, influence the ageing process to drive multiple age-related pathologies; these biological mechanisms of ageing have therefore emerged as viable therapeutic targets for manipulating ageing itself to treat age-related diseases. This conference is jointly organised with the British Society for Research on Ageing (BSRA) and will bring together those working on cellular metabolism with those developing interventions to improve healthy ageing, providing an interdisciplinary forum for discussion on how to translate fundamental scientific findings to clinical strategies that target ageing and its associated diseases.
This meeting is aimed at researchers in a range of disciplines including biochemistry, biology and medicine. The event programme will also include a public session to broaden awareness and provide a balanced view of the most recent scientific evidence relating to health during ageing.
DNA Replication is one of the most fundamental processes in life. Every dividing cell has to duplicate its genome before cell division. Mistakes during DNA replication are a major cause of genomic instability that can lead to cancer development. With this in mind, research into biochemistry of DNA replication is of high interest for many groups around the world and biotech companies.
This meeting will provide an excellent opportunity for researchers working in this area to exchange ideas and network.
21 September – 24 September
All of the day
87th Harden Conference: Single-molecule bacteriology II
Single-molecule imaging has revolutionized our ability to study molecular processes underlying bacterial function. New fluorescent proteins and dyes, ultrasensitive microscopy, and image-analysis software have helped visualize reactions, interactions and motions inside single bacteria. In a sense, we are “re-discovering” bacteria with a new set of eyes.
The agenda of this interdisciplinary meeting will showcase exciting developments in this young field. This will include structural/mechanistic studies using super-resolution imaging and single-molecule microscopy, new quantitative in vivo techniques applicable to bacteria, complementary theoretical modelling approaches, and studies of clinical/commercial significance.
This topic is the theme of the 87th Harden Conference, an event series unique to the Biochemical Society, providing residential research conferences covering a specialist topic. These events are widely recognised for their emphasis on free and open discussion to encourage the exchange of the latest data and a critical discussion of the technical challenges that these developments face.
05 October – 06 October
All of the day
Low molecular weight thiols: lessons learned and new perspectives
Thiol redox reactions are implicated in a diverse range of physiological processes and are often dysregulated in human pathologies such as cancer, neurodegeneration and metabolic disorders. Low-molecular-weight (LMW) thiols play an essential role in maintaining the cellular redox homeostasis and exert important functions in cell growth, metabolism and detoxification pathways.
In the last decade, there have been significant advances in our understanding of redox biology, facilitated by the development of cutting-edge technologies and research tools. This conference will be one of the first to focus on the versatile family of LMW thiols in health and disease, a family which contains structurally and functionally diverse molecules with a range of evolutionary histories.
The programme will give attendees the chance to learn about the most recent developments on the role of LMW thiols in redox regulation, signalling, and health and disease from leading experts in the field, and provide networking opportunities to encourage new collaborative interactions between participants and further advance research in this field.
Synthetic biology is a convergence of multiple fields that can generate both improved understanding of biological systems as well as cutting-edge biotechnology.
Synthetic Biology UK 2020 will explore the unique opportunities of research in a number of areas of synthetic biology, establishing likely future directions and facilitating discussion about appropriate strategies. It will provide an excellent framework for younger scientists and engineers to learn about burgeoning new areas of activity, including the engineering of microbial communities and of microbial-plant interactions.