The focus for the 12th School (Primošten, Croatia 27/9- 6/10/2014.) will be the biomacromolecular complexes and assemblies (protein-RNA/DNA complexes, e.g., viruses, ribosomes; quaternary protein structures; DNA, proteins and polyelectrolytes). The lecturers will describe related problems and discuss approaches to their solutions, e.g.:

  • spectroscopies (NMR, EPR, FTIR, Raman…)
  • microscopies (AFM, fluorescence techniques, super resolution…)
  • diffraction methods
  • computational solutions, modeling and simulations

The School is intended for young scientists (primarily Ph.D. students) at the beginning of their academic careers who are interested in the fundamental study of biomacromolecules: the structures of nucleic acid/protein complexes (ribosomes, viruses, chromatin), protein aggregation, conformational dynamics, folded and intrinsically disordered proteins, enzymatic activity—small molecule recognition, biomacromolecular interactions, bioenergetics and single molecule biophysics.

In addition to the School’s inherent role in the transfer of knowledge and ideas, we emphasize its catalytic role in arranging future research collaborations, joint projects, visits and postdoc positions – and friendships. The previous 11th School was attended by 70 Ph.D. students from 16 countries in Europe. 50 students presented the poster, of which 20 had a short poster talk. There were 20 lecturers from Croatia, USA, UK, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and Slovenia.

The School, future and past

With the legacy of Prof. Pifat-Mrzljak in mind, it is the intention of the organizers to position this school as a biennial event, complementary to, rather than competing with, relevant international activities, e.g., the Regional Biophysics Conference or the EBSA Biophysics Course. In 2014 it is also coorganized by COST CM1306 Molecular Machines action as a training event for this Action.

We remind that for more than 30 years, the school was chaired by the late Prof. Greta Pifat-Mrzljak, an eminent Croatian biophysicist and recipient of the American Biophysical Society’s Emily M. Gray Award, and is generally regarded as one of the best of its kind in Europe. Through the years, it has been attended by more than one thousand Ph.D. students and postdocs interested in becoming acquainted with the state-of-the-art in biophysics. The lecturers have always been of the highest quality, including top scientists in their respective disciplines and several Nobel laureates.