Dr Jan Löwe appointed Director of the Laboratory of Molecular Biology

March 2018

Darwin Fellow, Dr Jan Löwe, has been appointed as the next Director of the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB).

Dr Löwe, who became a Fellow of Darwin College in 2012, is currently the joint head of the Structural Studies Division at the LMB, and Deputy Director of the Institute.

Founded in 1962, the LMB is a multi-disciplinary research institute dedicated to the understanding of important biological processes at the levels of atoms, molecules, cells and organisms, towards solving key problems in human health. Scientists at the LMB tackle difficult long-term research problems and have made revolutionary contributions to science – such as in the sequencing of DNA and pioneering the method of X-ray crystallography to determine protein structure.

As Director, Jan will have control of a core-budget of some £190 million over five years and direction of over 700 research and support staff.

He said: “Not in my wildest dreams would I have thought in 1996 when I came here that I would one day be the director of this great institute. Being given such an important job makes me feel both excited and humbled. I will aim to preserve and develop LMB's very special culture and people, so that new ideas keep the LMB at the forefront of molecular biology, where it belongs."

The LMB continues to produce exceptional scientific outputs, and since its foundation, 15 LMB scientists have been awarded Nobel Prizes for their work, the latest being Dr Richard Henderson (who is also a Fellow of Darwin College), who was awarded the 2017 Chemistry Prize for the development of cryo-electron microscopy.

Darwin College has had a long and distinguished list of Fellows, Honorary Fellows, and alumni who have been associated with the LMB, including three Nobel Laureates: Max Perutz, Richard Henderson, and César Milstein.

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