This blog is a special one!

Jon Marles-Wright,  one of my PIs, had the opportunity to invite Richard Henderson to Newcastle University. For those who doesn’t him, he share the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2017 with Jacques Dubochet and Joachim Frank. They were awarded “for developing Cryo-Electron Microscopy for the high-resolution structure determination of biomolecules in solution” (nobelprize.org).

Firstly, we had the opportunity to assist to an amazing and encouraging presentation from Richard Henderson that showed us the development protein/DNA structure resolution using Cryo-EM technique through the years. Following the talk student and staff were able to discuss with him during lunch time and  ask any questions that they had and he always answered with some stories to relate to the questions, which was even more interesting.

Secondly, as we received at the Newcastle Electron Microscopy facility new exciting equipments such as a brand new TEM, the HITACHI HT7800 (alongside the Leica plunger to cryo-cool the grids and the GATAN Elsa cryo-holder, which allow us to mount the cryo-cooled grid on the TEM), Richard Henderson and Christopher J. Russo had the opportunity to play around with the new TEM while explaining some points and checking its quality. Saying that, he concluded that our new TEM has a good quality and we will be able to have some good results out of that, once the data collection software is installed.

All of this was really exciting and I really enjoyed that day. It give me more and more enthusiasm about my project and it was really encouraging to me. Now that we are all setup for cryo-EM here in Newcastle, I’ll do my best to obtain good grids for single particle high-resolution cryo-EM and hoping to have a good map at a good resolution, finger crossed.

Here are some pictures of that exciting day, enjoy!

1: Richard Henderson and Christopher J. Russo Working on the TEM

2: Richard Henderson taking notes of measurements

3: Richard Henderson with students and post-docs discussion during lunch time

4: Richard Henderson and Jon Marles-Wright talking

Sema Ejder