Past Events

Industry Talk - NPL
Thursday 20 October 2022, 14:00 - 15:30

This talk will be taking place online on Thursday 20 October 2022 at 2pm UK time. Please register here to recieve a link to the Zoom webinar.

Speakers: Alex R. Jones and Amy E. Danson, Biometrology, National Physical Laboratory

Title: Biomolecular Metrology: Ensuring Reproducible Measurement for the Life Sciences

Abstract: According to the UK Government’s Life Sciences Vision, the “human Life Sciences sector is among the most valuable and strategically important in the UK economy, and critical to the country’s health, wealth, and resilience”. This fact was starkly illustrated during the COVID-19 pandemic and becomes increasingly true with an aging population. Reproducible, quantitative measurement is therefore vital for this sector to inspire confidence in data, enable alignment with regulations, enhance efficiency, accelerate innovation and, not least, to improve quality of life. A robust metrological framework for the Life Sciences is more important than ever. But is a metrology developed with physics and engineering challenges in mind a suitable fit for the warm, wet, and variable world of biology?

During this talk we will present some of the challenges – both conceptual and practical – we face in developing metrology for biology. Our focus will be on in vitro measurements of biomolecules and in particular proteins (both native and therapeutic). We will discuss the importance of measurements that relate higher-order structure to biological activity and the challenges posed when structural disorder is important to function. We will also touch on the synergy between computation and experimental measurements, with a focus on the critical role of mutual validation. The examples presented will serve to illustrate the power of adopting a multimodal approach to biological metrology.