UCL Division of Biosciences


ISMB Online Retreat - 2021

22 July 2021–23 July 2021, 9:30 am–3:20 pm

ismb retreat 2021

The Institute of Structural and Molecular Biology (ISMB) bi-annual retreat - 22nd and 23rd July, via Microsoft Teams.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to





Tabitha Owen – Structural and Molecular Biology
020 7679 2308


Talks will be held online
via Microsoft Teams
Please use the link below
or contact the organiser


Day 1, Thursday, 22nd of July 2021, 0930-1830 hrs

Session 1 09:30-12:00 (150 minutes)
Chairs: John Christodoulou and Finn Werner 

09:30 Welcome by Finn Werner

• 09:30 Keynote lecture Buzz Baum, LMB, Cambridge: ‘Cell division: from archaea to eukaryotes’
• 10:00 Tom Foran ‘The investigation of the microtubule binding mechanism of doublecortin-like kinase by cryo-EM’
• 10:15 Gorjan Stojanowski ’Chemoenzymatic cascades towards unnatural aminoglycoside derivatives’
• 10:30 Shyam Mousumi ‘Can be Mycobactin Biosynthesis Inhibitors a New Hope in Efflux Pump Inhibition?’

Coffee break 10:45-11:00 

• 11:00 Gwenny Cackett ‘African Swine Fever Virus Transcription - from functional genomics to molecular function’
• 11:15 Gabi Heller ‘Probing the pathogenicity and drugability of intrinsically disordered proteins using integrative methods’
• 11:30 Maria Bawn ‘Engineering enzymes to degrade plastic’
• 11:45 Jim Monistrol ‘Disaggregation of alpha-synuclein amyloid fibres by the Hsc70 system’

Lunch break 12:00-12:50
Posters are available for viewing during all breaks but are ‘manned’ during the poster session in the afternoon.

Session 2 13:00-14:15 (75 minutes)
Chair: Lisa Cabrita

• 13:00-13:30 Keynote lecture Michael Jewett, NorthWestern University, US, ‘Reconceptualizing the way complex biological systems are engineered for compelling applications in medicine, materials, and energy’
• 13:30 Kamila Kamuda ‘Molecular basis for alpha-1-antitrypsin aggregation studied by in situ structural biology methods’
• 13:45 Ivana Bukvin ‘How do ribosomes orient the nascent polypeptide during biosynthesis?’
• 14:00 hrs Peter Sjizz ‘Investigation of Chemically Constructed Bispecific Antibodies and their Conjugates for the Treatment of Type 1 Diabetes and Cancer’

Coffee break 14:15-14:30 

Session 3 14:30-15:30 (85 minutes)
Chair: Adrian Shepherd

• 14:30 Keynote lecture Deborah Marks, Harvard Medical School, US ‘Machine learning to accelerate biology’
• 15:00 Sammy Chan ‘The ribosome regulates nascent protein folding by promoting structured intermediates outside the exit tunnel’
• 15:15 James Irving ‘Development of, and mechanistic insights from, a small molecule corrector of alpha-1-antitrypsin aggregation with in vivo efficacy’
• 15:30 Valentina Spiteri ‘Two human IgG antibodies with very different hinges – how do they compare?’

Poster Session 4 15:45-17:00 (75 minutes) on 'GatherTown'
Chair: Amandine Maréchal

Social Session, 17:00-18:30 hrs 
Chair: Outback Team Building
‘Virtual Escape Room Jewel Heist’

Closure 18:30

Day 2, Friday, 23rd of July 2021, 1000-1530 

Session 5 10:00-11:45 (105 minutes)
Chairs: Stefan Howorka and Rachael Dickman

• 10:00 hrs Keynote lecture Adam Nelson, University of Leeds, UK ‘How Best to Explore Chemical Space for Bioactive Molecular Discovery’
• 10:30 Luyao Yang ‘Development of Recombinant Oral dsRNA Vaccines and Fish Growth Hormones Using Transgenic Microalgae’
• 10:45 Sioned Jones ‘Hydrophobic Interactions between DNA Duplexes and Synthetic and Biological Membranes’

Coffee break 11:00-11:45 

• 11:15 Giancarlo Abis ‘Unravelling the mechanism of binding of IMP1 to its RNA targets’
• 11:30 Hannah Britt ‘Structural mass spectrometry insights into dynamic glycoprotein complexes and conformations’

Lunch break 1145-1230 

Session 6 Training session
Chair: Phil Robinson

• 12:30-14:00 Simon Cain from Westbourne Training and Consulting, UK, ‘Pitching & presenting: how to present more effectively in front of funding panels and wider audiences’

Coffee break 14:00-14:15 

Session 7 14:15-15:30 (75 minutes)
Chair: Jerome Gouge

• 14:15-14:45 Keynote lecture Richard H Ebright, Rutgers University, USA ‘Structural basis of transcription-translation coupling
• 14:45 Simona Pilotto ‘Structural basis of RNA polymerase inhibition in the virus-host arms race’
• 15:00 Stephanie Webb ‘Dissecting the molecular mechanism of kinesin2 regulation’

Closing remarks 15:20 Finn Werner