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Cambridge Academy of Therapeutic Sciences


Five Cambridge researchers join the community of more than 1,900 leading life scientists in Europe and beyond today as the European Molecular Biology Organisation (EMBO) announces its newly-elected Members. EMBO Members are recognised for their outstanding achievements in the life sciences. The newly elected members reside in 22 countries. The 58 new EMBO Members are based in 15 member states of the EMBC, the intergovernmental organisation that funds the major EMBO Programmes and activities. EMBO Director Fiona Watt said: “The new EMBO Members and Associate Members are exceptional scientists, who carry out leading research across a variety of fields, ranging from cell biology and cancer to vaccine development and machine learning. "I am delighted to welcome them to EMBO, and I know that they will enrich the life of the organisation immensely.” 

This year’s intake includes:

Professor Menna Clatworthy, Department of Medicine- Professor Clatworthy is a cellular immunologist and renal physician. Her research has provided fundamental insights in two areas: tissue immunity in the kidney, and the regulation of antibody generation and effector function in different tissues, in health and disease. “I am delighted to be recognised by EMBO. I am grateful for the support and hard work of my research team, colleagues and collaborators, as well as the generosity of patients and tissue donors, without which we would not made the progress we have in understanding human tissue immunity. “EMBO plays an invaluable role in promoting scientific partnerships across countries to foster high-quality collaborative science, and I look forward to contributing to this goal in the future.”

Professor Richard Gilbertson, Director, Cancer Research UK Cambridge Cancer Centre- Professor Gilbertson’s research is focused on understanding the link between normal development and the origins of cancer, particularly brain tumours. “It is such an honour to have been elected to EMBO and be part of this incredible group of scientists and colleagues from across Europe. "I very much hope to continue to promote international collaborations and interactions through my membership of this terrific organisation.”

Professor Ian Henderson, Department of Plant Sciences- Professor Henderson’s research interests are in the genetic and epigenetic organisation of plant genomes, including their ‘dark matter’, which is being revealed by long-read DNA sequencing. “I am delighted that my research has been recognised by EMBO membership, which rests on many collaborations with excellent colleagues and team members in my group.”

Dr Madeline Lancaster, Official Fellow, Clare Hall- Dr Lancaster’s research uses cerebral organoids generated from stem cells to model complex, human brain development in vitro. “I am honoured to join this prestigious organisation. Without all the hard work of my team this would not have been possible! "I look forward to many fruitful interactions with other EMBO members.”

Professor Julian Rayner, Director, Cambridge Institute for Medical Research, and Director, Wellcome Connecting Science- Professor Rayner studies malaria parasites, and in particular how they invade human red blood cells in order to multiply and cause disease. His team seeks to understand red blood cell invasion in molecular detail in order to identify and prioritise new and much-needed drug and vaccine targets. “Our discoveries, like all scientific research, stem from a deeply collaborative process involving the talent and dedication of many researchers in the UK and across the globe. "I believe the fundamental important of collaboration in science is even broader because science is part of society, so the public should be involved and engaged throughout the research process. “EMBO embodies the supportive, open spirit in which we try to work, and I am deeply honoured to be recognised by my scientific peers in this manner.”

Members provide guidance and support for EMBO activities, for example by evaluating funding applications, serving on EMBO Council and committees, or joining the editorial boards of EMBO Press journals. Through their involvement, members help to shape the direction of life sciences, foster the careers of young researchers, and strengthen the research communities in Europe and beyond. New members are nominated and elected by the existing EMBO Membership. The annual process ensures a broad scope with the flexibility to expand into newly emerging fields in the life sciences. EMBO will formally welcome the new members at the annual Members’ Meeting in Heidelberg between 26 and 28 October 2022. An online directory listing all members, their affiliations, and subject areas is available here.