Posted on 26 May 2012
Dr Venki Ramakrishnan, a structural biologist, was awarded the 2009 Nobel Prize for Chemistry (with Thomas Steitz and Ada Yonath) for his work on the structure and function of ribosomes, the large molecular machines present in all cells that translate information encoded on DNA and turn it into various proteins. Because they are crucial to life, and ribosomes from bacteria are slightly different from human ones, they are also a major target for many antibiotics that kill bacteria by blocking their ribosomes.
The lecture was hosted by Professor Gideon Davies, FRS who thanked the Vice Chancellor and Dr Ramakrishnan for the event. After the lecture, the Vice Chancellor awarded a book prize to 3 students who had performed particularly well in their first year; Edward Matthews, currently in Year 2, received the Chemistry prize. The day finished with a dinner hosted by the Vice Chancellor at which a range of topics were discussed and at which Edward, Suzanne Wallace and Samuel Nicholson (Students from Physics and Electronics) impressed all with their maturity and general knowledge and were real credits to their Departments.