Did you know that work at Birkbeck has contributed to our understanding of the chemistry of life? In 1937, when JD Bernal moved from Cambridge to Birkbeck, we became a leading centre for protein X-ray crystallography and, more recently, macromolecular electron microscopy.
We can now understand thousands of proteins in atomic detail using these techniques together with advances in genetic engineering which enable us to produce large quantities of almost any protein from any organism in bacteria or cell lines in the laboratory. Not only does this give us a detailed understanding of the chemistry of life; it also helps us to design and improve drugs.
In the first of the Be Birkbeck Deans’ series, and assuming no prior knowledge, Professor Nicholas Keep will explain how these techniques work, using illustrations from his own work and that of his colleagues.