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Annual Research Report

Image used on the cover of the 2021-2022 review showing three spherical embryo-like balls of cells (blastoids) in blue and pink. Blue marks all nuclei of the structure, the green label marks the cells that will generate the embryo proper (Nanog), and the pink label is a readout of a ribosomal protein (pS6).

For 2021 and 2022 we widened the scope of our ‘annual research report’, reshaping this into a wider overview of the Institute as a whole, and most importantly, a celebration of our whole community without whom we would not be able to undertake our research.

Rather than a research prospectus, the new review presents our vision, key facts and figures about the Institute and our performance in 2021 and 2022, shares highlights and recognises the achievements of people who received awards, before providing updates from each of our three research programmes: Immunology, Signalling and Epigenetics. Five spotlight features (highlighted below) bring the Institute’s research to life, focusing on individual research groups, particularly those new to the Institute, and exploring their work in relation to the Institute’s central mission of undertaking world-leading research to deliver lifelong health.    

You can browse the 2021-2022 research report using the reader below or download the PDF version in full. The downloadable pdf file includes the following accessibility features: alternative text for images and symbols, auto tagging, and a manually curated reading order to ensure that screen readers follow a logical reading order. If you have any questions about the report or feedback on how the accessibility of the report can be improved, please contact comms@babraham.ac.uk.

 

Research features from the 2021-2022 Review Report

An image of the Drosophila gut, the structure that is equivalent to the human small intestine. Blue fluorescence marks cell nuclei and white fluorescence shows the location of a phosphorylated protein involved in the signalling pathway that establishes a molecular gradient to maintain tissue patterning and homeostasis.

Time flies

Joining a new organisation and building your research team during a pandemic isn’t ideal but new group leader Dr Ian McGough is pleased he’s found his niche, and gorgeous trail running routes, alongside a very warm welcome.

Illustrations of biological life, such as butterflies, beetles and plants surrounded by stock Latin phrases.

From Latin to the lab

Dr Philipp Voigt joined the Institute in December 2021 to set up a new group in the Epigenetics programme. But on leaving school he wanted to teach maths and Latin. Here, he explains the biological conundrums he aims to answer – and why Latin grammar could yet come in handy.

A series of time-lapse images showing T cells killing tumour cells (shown in red).

Natural born killers

Dr Arianne Richard talks about T cells, how knowing more about how they operate could open up new vaccines against viruses and new therapies for cancer, and why the Institute is the best place for her to tackle these questions.

Stained C.elegans worms

From tiny worms to big discoveries

Dr Della David reflects on her first 12 months at the Institute, reveals the roots of her own scientific curiosity, and explains how a tiny, transparent, short-lived worm is enabling her to discover new ways of promoting healthy ageing.

Top section of a microscopy image of a human embryo 7 days after fertilisation. Nuclei are shown in blue, and the shape of each cell is outlined in green.

Delving deeply into development

Dr Peter Rugg-Gunn talks about the challenges of studying early human development, his group’s groundbreaking discoveries, and why he believes the Human Development Biology Initiative – a five year, £10m project funded by Wellcome – will lead to a step change in the field.