23 May 2023
"Cryo-electron microscopy : providing a 3D perspective on the building blocks of the cell"
Cryo-Electron microscopy is a technique which allows for the 3D visualization of proteins involved in all aspects of cell functions. If a cell would be a factory, the proteins within a cell could be described as the machinery within that factory. The same way we would need to inspect every clog and bolt in a machine to understand its function, cryoEM allows for the detailed visual representation of these complex molecular machines. Gaining such knowledge about proteins then allows us to understand how a cell functions but also the molecular cause of cellular dysfunction in the context of disease. Ultimately, understanding how proteins work and don’t work supports the research for treatment in a wide variety of diseases.
I recently became a PhD student in Biophysics in the group of Marta Carroni at the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics in Stockholm University. My project focuses on resolving three dimensional representations of the molecular machines that are essential for cells to function. This aspect of biophysical research is important to understand how molecules and proteins function and interact with each other. Acquiring such knowledge helps in the understanding of diseases and subsequently in the identification of targets for therapeutics development and other medical issues. Being part of the Pint of Science organization is an amazing opportunity to explain to the general public the ins and outs of research and the work that is behind biomedical research. It is also a great opportunity to encourage both the general public and scientists to share knowledge and questions about great biological questions !