9:00 am09:00

Norwich Single Cell Symposium

  • Earlham Institute (EI)

A day of talks and discussion on the development and application of new technologies to decode life at the single cell level.

This is an Earlham Institute Event. The following information is taken from their website where you can also register for this event:

Developments in single cell genomics technologies have enabled the dissection of biological processes in unprecedented detail, with broad ranging applications in the study of microbial genomics as well as plant and human health and disease. Technologies enabling the analysis of 100s-1000s of single cells in individual experiments are becoming routine, and the diversity of techniques available to analyse the genomes, epigenomes and transcriptomes of single cells continues to increase at pace.

The Norwich Single Cell Symposium aims to bring researchers curious about single cell genomics together with external speakers presenting advanced single cell research, to highlight the developing single cell capabilities available at Earlham Institute and to act as a platform to catalyse future development and application of single cell genomics approaches in the region.

This one-day event will feature talks from external and internal speakers, covering topics including:

  • Technology development in Single Cell Genomics
  • Single Cell Genomics in Developmental Biology
  • Single Cell Genomics in Health and Disease
  • Applications of Single Cell Genomics in Plant Sciences
  • Analysis of Single Cell Genomics Data
May 21

51st ESBOC Symposium “Chemical Synthetic Biology: Self-assembly, Encapsulation and Delivery

51st ESBOC Symposium “Chemical Synthetic Biology: Self-assembly, Encapsulation and Delivery” May 19th-21st 2017

The ESBOC Symposium has been held since 1969 at Gregynog Hall (nr. Newtown, Powys), which is a beautiful venue for a scientific meeting, and focuses on a different topic at the Chemistry-Biology interface each year.  This year’s Symposium is entitled “Chemical Synthetic Biology: Self-assembly, Encapsulation and Delivery”, and will take place on 19th – 21st May 2017, starting at 3.00 pm on Friday 19th May.

The plenary speakers are: Cheryl Kerfeld (Michigan State, USA), Don Hilvert (ETH, Switzerland), Roman Jerala (Ljubljana, Slovenia), Alexander Kros (Leiden, The Netherlands), Andrew Turberfield (Oxford, UK), Martin Warren (Kent, UK), Paul Verkade (Bristol, UK), and Anna Peacock (Birmingham, UK).  There will be a poster session at the meeting, and poster presenters will make a short ‘flash’ presentation of their poster to the conference attendees.

Registration for the 51st ESBOC Symposium is via the ESBOC web-site:

The cost of registration is £350 for academic participants (£270 for PhD students), £495 for industrial participants, which includes all accommodation and meals at Gregynog.

Jul 28

EMBO practical course: "Multilevel Modelling of Morphogenesis"

Venue: John Innes Centre, Norwich, UK

*Application Deadline:* April 07, 2017.

For more information, please click here.


Main Course Objective:
Understanding the multi-level nature and feedbacks involved in biological development requires an integrated, systems biology approach. This practical course will provide students with the theoretical background and the hands-on tools that are needed to enter this rapidly growing area of science. The methods and techniques taught in this practical course are essential for unravelling the complexities that come from interactions between different levels of biological organisation and the non linearity of the biological processes.

Target Audience:
This practical course is aimed at experimental biologists with an interest to understand and explore how the complexity of biological systems can be dealt with within a mathematical or computational framework, *and* at computationally and mathematically oriented students interested in learning leading-edge computational techniques that can be applied to gain insights in developmental biology.

How to Apply:
Please register online at stating your motivation for applying and brief research interests.

Applications will be limited to 24 students and successful applicants will be selected from the described motivation and research interests. Accommodation and full board will be provided.

International Workshop on Control Engineering and Synthetic Biology
Jul 18

International Workshop on Control Engineering and Synthetic Biology

International Workshop on Control Engineering and Synthetic Biology - 17th and 18th July 2017, Royal Academy of Engineering – Prince Philip House, London, UK

Designing and implementing effective feedback control in living cells has the potential to dramatically change biotechnology and synthetic biology. However, before this potential is realised, a number of theoretical and practical challenges must be addressed, which lie at the interface between control engineering and synthetic biology.

This will be the topic of an International Workshop on Control Engineering and Synthetic Biology, which will be held on the 17th and 18th July 2017 at the Royal Academy of Engineering – Prince Philip House, London, UK. This workshop will discuss both the challenges and the opportunities that Synthetic Biology offers. A specific focus will be on the “next grand challenges” in the field of synthetic biology and how control engineering can address them. An exceptional group of speakers, world leaders in synthetic biology and control engineering, will present recent progress, identify challenges and share their vision of where synthetic biology is headed and how the control engineering community can contribute to delivering its promise.

This event is supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) under projects EP/M002454/1 and EP/M002187/1.

Please visit:

for more information, the list of speakers, and to register.

OpenPlant Forum 2017
Jul 26

OpenPlant Forum 2017

  • Downing College, University of Cambridge

OpenPlant Forum is an annual open meeting for plant synthetic biology organised by the OpenPlant partners: University of Cambridge, John Innes Centre and the Earlham Institute. Attendees from other organisations are welcome.

In 2017 the theme is fast and frugal engineering with biology. Join us to explore new ways of exploiting genetic tools, automation, open international exchange, DIY/maker approaches and more to develop globally accessible synthetic biology research and teaching resources. We will showcase the latest developments in plant synthetic biology from within OpenPlant and beyond, alongside outcomes from OpenPlant Fund, our seed funding scheme which has already supported almost 40 interdisciplinary projects led by early career researchers.

Registration is free to all but places are limited, please sign up early to ensure your space.

You can find more information on the Forum pages.

Sep 1

EUSynBioS Annual Symposium 2017

The European Association of Synthetic Biology Students and Postdocs (EUSynBioS) are excited to announce dates for their annual symposium on Synthetic Biology held Aug 31 - Sep 1 2017 in Madrid. For more information, please click here.

The Symposium features exciting speakers and interactive sessions to foster greater collaboration and engagement within the European Synthetic Biology community. EUSynBioS is at heart a student and post-doc association and have reserved a majority of speaking time for PhD students and early career post-docs to present their research to peers and leading academics and industry representatives. 

The European Association of Students and Post-docs in Synthetic Biology (EUSynBioS) was founded as a student-led initiative in late 2014. Their goal is to shape and foster a community of young researchers active the young scientific discipline of synthetic biology within Europe by means of providing an integrative central resource for interaction and professional development.

Apr 6

SynBioBeta London 2017

SynBioBeta London 2017, Imperial College London, UK

Connect with the Global Synthetic Biology Community - For the 5th year in a row, SynBioBeta London 2017 will bring together thought leaders and entrepreneurs from multiple facets of the synthetic biology industry.

Our focus is to unite attendees through thought-provoking talks, panels and networking opportunities, allowing the science and business sides of the industry to make critical connections.

With talks from key decision makers and tech pioneers, SynBioBeta is a must for those wanting to keep up with the rapidly-evolving industry. Networking opportunities are rich for those aiming to grow their company, their client list, meet investors or launch their next product. Many partnerships, connections, and new ventures have been started at SynBioBeta. If you are an active part of the synthetic biology industry and have a passion for making biology easier to engineer, then this is a must attend event.

SynBioBeta have offered a discount code to for the event, which entitles partipants to 20% off the cost of attending the conference. 

The discount code is: CambridgeMeetLON17

10:00 am10:00

Synthetic Biology for the Senses at Cambridge Science Festival

  • Downing Site

Plants and microbes make a wonderful variety of colours, scents, tastes and textures. OpenPlant is teaming up with the SAW Trust and Cambridge Synthetic Biology SRI to run Synthetic Biology for the Senses at the Cambridge Science Festival, an active and crafty stand where visitors can discover transcription and translation with our friendly robot, learn about the principles behind synthetic biology and how it is applied to make pigments, perfumes and flavorings, and create a synthetic flower to take home.

Come down and join the fun!

Cambridge and Norwich SynBio scientists willing to volunteer at the stand for a couple of hours, please contact me at

Nicotiana benthamiana by Aymeric Leveau (John Innes Centre) Shared on Norwich Research Park Image Library under CC BY 4.0

Nicotiana benthamiana by Aymeric Leveau (John Innes Centre)
Shared on Norwich Research Park Image Library under CC BY 4.0

Mar 17

Cell-free workshop

Hands-on workshop for the use of cell-free expression systems, funded by the University of Cambridge Synthetic Biology SRI. Two days of practical events and symposia. Invited speakers: Keith Pardee (University of Toronto) and Richard Kelwick (Imperial College). Events will be held at the University of Cambridge.

6:00 pm18:00

Café Synthetique

  • Panton Arms
Café Synthetique at the Panton Arms, Cambridge

Café Synthetique at the Panton Arms, Cambridge

Café Synthetique is the monthly meetup for the Cambridge synthetic biology community with informal talks, discussion and pub snacks. This month's theme is Biology as Technology. This months theme will focus on how biology is used as technology, with a particular focus on how we have and will continue to shape plant crops species. We have two excellent speakers whose work focuses on how technology has been and will be used to modify genes both for use as research tools in genetics and evolutionary biology, and also as a means of plant breeding. Free bar snacks and good conversation provided!

Biology as Technology: An Unexpected History of Innovation in Living Things
Dr Helen Anne-Curry, Department of History and Philosophy of Science.
Helen's current research considers the history of global conservation, in particular efforts made to preserve the genetic diversity of agricultural crop species through the practice of seed banking.

Breeding technology for better crops
Dr Alison Bentley, NIAB.
Alison has worked on a range of projects within NIAB’s flagship wheat pre-breeding programme, including research on characterising flowering time response and the exploitation of novel genetic diversity and genomics tools for wheat improvement. She has a strong interest in the genotype x environment interactions controlling complex traits and in the application of genomics in the breeding of high yielding, climate resilient cereals.

For more information and to RSVP, click here.

Panton Arms, Panton Street, Cambridge

8:00 pm20:00

Build a Biomakespace

  • Bay 13, Cambridge Biomedical Campus

A weekly meeting to plan for establishing a Biomakespace at the old MRC-LMB.

All welcome to discuss the space and what to put in it - particularly if you are keen to volunteer to help make it happen! 

How to find the Biomakespace
From the Addenbrookes roundabout head towards the hospital main entrance, on the right hand side at the zebra crossing you will see signs for IdeaSpace, follow these to the door at the bottom of the steps heading down from the road (street view - steps are to the right).
Call 07787445330 from the door, we will keep an eye out for people as well.

Volunteer with us
We particularly need people join the:
• Communications and Fundraising Team
• Lab Design Team
• Training and Outreach Team
• Governance Team

If you would like experience of founding and running a novel interdisciplinary biology innovation space in Cambridge then contact and visit for more information.