Welcome to Horizons

ANNOUNCEMENT: We regret to announce that due to unforseen circumstances, Prof. Martin Fussenegger's talk had to be cancelled. Please click here to see the updated schedule.

Registration for Horizons in Molecular Biology 2016 is open! Click here to register. To submit an abstract, click here.

To view the schedule, please click here.

Horizons in Molecular Biology is an international symposium in the molecular life sciences, which is organized by PhD students of the MSc/PhD Molecular Biology Program - International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS). This year, the 13th annual Horizons in Molecular Biology symposium will take place from September 12th-15th at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen, Germany.

The aim of the symposium is to provide a forum for young scientists from all over the world to discover new cutting edge research, to present and discuss their research and to form long-lasting networks. 

We present a program that provides participants with access to innovative and exciting research in the molecular life sciences. During these four days, some of the most renowned scientists in the world will deliver lectures on their groundbreaking research in the fields of Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Developmental Biology, Biotechnology, Structural Biology and Neuroscience and Behavior. For more information on the speakers, check out their profiles on the right.

In addition, participants will have the chance for discussion not only during poster sessions and presentations but also during numerous social activities. Selected participants will also have the opportunity to present their work in an awarded student talk, for which travel grants and a fee waiver will be provided. We also proud to present our 10th annual Career Fair for Life Sciences on Monday, September 12th, in which participants can interact and network with leaders from industry, publishing and academia. The Career Fair is free of charge.

We believe that Horizons in Molecular Biology will offer you new perspectives, visions and opportunities!

We are looking forward to meeting you in Göttingen!

To view the poster, please click here.

Horizons in Molecular Biology 2015: Our 12th annual symposium was a success!

Almost thirteen years have passed since Horizons in Molecular Biology first kicked off its successful start. The 12th annual symposium took place from September 14th to 17th, 2015. This year, the symposium hosted an excellent selection of speakers from all across the globe and across a broad range of topics. The conference started with an exciting keynote by Tom Rapoport on how the organelles inside cells take up their elegant shapes, and continued with insights into the field of structural biology by Axel Brunger, Pamela Bjorkman, and Adam Frost. At the interface of physics and chemistry, Alice Ting talked about live-cell proteome mapping while Charalampos Kalodimos discussed the dynamics of protein assemblies. Eminent scientists in the field of developmental biology like Kimberly Mowry, Karuna Sampath, and Didier Stainier shared some of their most fascinating research. Manuel Mayr's talk established a link between basic science and clinical biology. The talks on neurosciences by Erika Holzbaur and King-Wai Yau were truly impressive. Inspiring talks by Scott Emr, Kathleen Green, Fumiyo Ikeda, Maya Schuldiner, and Carola Vinuesa left us with a promise of excitement and motivation for research in the field of biochemistry and cell biology, while the Nobel Lecture by Martin Chalfie inspired the audience.

Apart from the plenary lectures, the presence and active participation of the speakers were exciting. In addition to the speakers, we welcomed around 200 young scientists from 17 different countries and four different continents. Additionally, this year, for the very first time, we hosted a special event called Beyond the Horizons which included art exhibitions depicting an overlap between art and science. Be it the career fair, wine and cheese session, the poster session, the art exhibition or the conference dinner and party, the interaction and networking between speakers and participants marked the success of the conference. Having completed last years’ Horizons, we hope that our conference keeps expanding its horizons with each passing year. We ask you to mark your calendars already for the 13th Horizons in Molecular Biology, which will take place from September 12th to 15th, 2016.

 -Shrutee Jakhanwal, on behalf of the Horizons Organizing Committee 


Of Journeys, Messages, Circles and Small Wonders - 11th Horizons in Molecular Biology

The 11th Horizons in Molecular Biology Symposium, organized by students of the IMPRS for Molecular Biology, took place from September 15-18 2014. We were glad to be able to welcome a diverse selection of excellent speakers and an audience of more than 250 participants from 42 countries – setting a new record in international diversity!

The Horizons symposiums are reknowned for their diversity of topics, giving participants the opportunity to interact with scientists from a broad range of fields, and this year was no different: From our section “Journey through Life” over “Circles of Life” and “Small Wonders of Life” to “Messages in Life”, virtually all areas of Molecular Biology were covered.

Among this year's 19 speakers were the two Nobel Laureates Ada Yonath, with a riveting talk about “the amazing ribsome”, and Sir John Walker, who shared his insights on the mechanism of ATP-synthesis. Further topics included the construction of connectomial maps of the brain (Jeff Lichtman), the resolution of structures of membrane proteins by solid-state NMR (Mei Hong), the connection between DNA methylation and Rett syndrome (Sir Adrian Bird), using proteomics to elucidate angiogenesis processes in cancer-associated cells (Sara Zanivan), and the translation from bench to bedside through the examples of DNA vaccines (Margaret Liu) and the use of KATP channel blockers in neonatal diabetes (Frances Ashcroft).

But we also looked beyond pure research: In his keynote lecture Ingo Potrykus shared with us his journey of developing Golden Rice and trying to deliver it to the farmers in countries in need of it, reminding the audience of the social and political implications of research. And during the opening talk of the Career Fair, Uri Alon elaborated in his amazing guitar talk on “Love and Fear in the Lab”, and the importance of emotions in scientific work.

Finally, Horizons has always been and always will be a place for students to interact with each other and established scientists, to forge contacts, and most important of all have fun! The relaxed atmosphere during the “Wine & Cheese” poster session, the conference dinner and party, the speed dating event at the Career Fair, and last but not least the coffee breaks, fuelled by hundreds of litres of coffee and a sizeable amount of cookies, promoted close proximity between speakers and participants.

The 12th Horizons in Molecular Biology symposium will take place from September 14 – 17 2015 and we are happy to already be able to announce that Nobel Laureate Martin Chalfie, best known for his work on GFP, has agreed to join us as a guest speaker. So save the date, and see you in 2015!

Horizons 2013 in pictures


2013 Teaser