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Oral Histories Programme File
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Janet Thornton

This is an interview with Janet Thornton who joined EMBL-EBI as Director in 2001. In this interview, Janet Thornton describes her interest in biomolecular data before coming to EBI an how she was invited to become Director of this institute. Furthermore, Janet Thornton gives an insight into her impressions when she started at the EBI as well as into the political and scientific strategies she developed for the institute. In addition, some information about the structure of EBI and about the ELIXIR-project can be found in this interview.

Petra Riedinger

In this interview, Petra Riedinger describes her work as a graphic designer for scientists at EMBL Heidelberg since 1976. Petra Riedinger also reflects the evolution of graphic designing she witnessed while working for EMBL. The interview contains verbal descriptions of some of the posters Petra Riedinger designed for EMBL.

Ada Yonath

In this interview, Ada Yonath from the Weizmann Institute of Science who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2009 talks about the development of her research on ribosomal crystallography. Especially her electron microscopy work together with Kevin Leonard and Sir John Kendrew is linked to the EMBL Heidelberg.

Paul Nurse

This is an interview with Paul Nurse who had been a geneticist and cell biologist at EMBL, In this interview, Paul Nurse especially reflects the differences between scientific research at universities in general and at EMBL. Beyond that, Paul Nurse describes his impressions of the Directors General Lennart Philipson and Iain Mattaj.

Eric Wieschaus

This is an interview with the evolutionary developmental biologist and Nobel Prize-winner Eric Wieschaus who was a group leader at EMBL Heidelberg between 1978 and 1981. In this interview, Eric Wieschaus describes how he became interested in flies an how he and Christiane Nüsslein-Vollhard came from working with Walter Gehring to starting at EMBL. Furthermore, Eric Wieschaus gives an insight of his daily work at EMBL, especially concerning mutagenesis and later zygotically active lethals screening. He also describes the cooperation with the EMBL facilities and he gives a special insight into his impressions of EMBLs first DG, Sir John Kendrew.

Tim Hunt

This is an interview with the 2001 Nobel Prize Winner Tim Hunt who became member of EMBO in 1978. In this interview, Tim Hunt gives an insight of his career as a biochemist before joining EMBO, especially his work on S 35 Methionine. He also describes his connections with other scientists at EMBL since 1978. Furthermore, Tim Hunt reflects the meaning of the Data Library and the role of EMBO and the EMBO journal in general.

Joan Steitz

This is an interview with the molecular biologist Joan Steitz. In this interview, Joan Steitz describes the stations of her scientific career in connection to her work on RNA phages. She also explains how she came in touch with EMBL through the SAC meetings and her scientific interest into snRNPs. Furthermore, Joan Steitz gives an insight into her impressions of the first three DGs and of female scientists at EMBL.

Alan Robinson

This is an interview with Alan Robinson who is part of the Industry Programme of the EBI in London. In this interview, Alan Robinson describes the process of how he came to the EBI. He describes the differences between the commercial and the academic research sector and how the interaction between the EBI and industry took place. Furthermore, Alan Robinson talks about how the use of biological data in scientific research began. He also gives an insight of his later work as team leader of the Industry Programme, of the relations between the EBI and EMBL Heidelberg and of MitoMiner

Patrick Baeuerle

This is an interview with 2019 Lennart Philipson Award winner Patrick Baeuerle who was a PhD-student at EMBL in Wieland Huttner's group from 1987 to 1988. In this interview, Patrick Baeuerle gives an insight into his research interests, especially his research concerning NF-kappa-B. He describes his later work in industry, his way into biotech companies and especially his foundation of MPM Capital. He also reflects the relationship between research and industry in this interview.

Mary Holmes

This is an interview with Mary Holmes who was the Librarian of EMBL Heidelberg from 1974 to 1998. In this interview, Mary Holmes describes how she became EMBL's first Librarian and the work she had to do in the first years of EMBL. Mary Holmes also talks about how she perceived the transformation of libraries in general and of EMBL's Szilárd Library in particular during the period she worked in this position, in particular with regard to computerisation. Furthermore, she talks about her impression of EMBL's first three DGs.

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