BBSRC and MRC renew investment in structural biology software

December 17, 2013

BBSRC and the MRC have renewed funding of a world-leading suite of software that allows scientists to determine the 3D structure of molecules.

In total £1.43M of funding has been awarded to eight components of Collaborative Computational Project Number 4 (CCP4) after a peer-reviewed application process.

Seven of the eight projects are being funded by BBSRC, with the Medical Research Council (MRC) funding the eighth.

CCP4, which has contributors from across the UK and a hub based at the Research Complex at Harwell, is a world leading x-ray crystallography software resource co-ordinated by the Computational Science and Engineering Department of the Science & Technology Facilities Council at the STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

Formed in 1979, it aims to develop and support the development of innovative approaches to determining and analysing protein structure, and to integrate these approaches into the suite.

It is a community-based resource that supports the widest possible researcher community, embracing academic, not-for-profit, and for-profit research. CCP4 aims to play a key role in the education and training of scientists in experimental structural biology. It encourages the wide dissemination of new ideas, techniques and practice.

Professor Melanie Welham, Director of Science at BBSRC, said: "CCP4 is a valuable and world-leading resource for scientists.

"Both BBSRC and MRC believe it is important to continue supporting the work of CCP4 in order to keep the UK at the cutting edge of structural biology, which is why we are jointly awarding £1.43M to the eight components of the project."
For more information about CCP4 visit


Chris Melvin, BBSRC media officer, 01793 414694,

The eight funded components of the 'CCP4 Grant Renewal 2014-2019: Question-driven crystallographic data collection and advanced structure solution' funding are:

Principal Investigator Research Organisation Value (£)

David Brown University of Kent 59473.16

Kevin Cowtan University of York 310300.38

Gwyndaf Evans Diamond Light Source 189918.80

Evgeny Krissinel STFC - Laboratories 407684.02

Garib Murshudov MRC Centre Cambridge 339104.22*

Martin Noble Newcastle University 11705.94

Randy Read University of Cambridge 79738.23

Daniel Rigden University of Liverpool 39442.98

*Funded by the Medical Research Council (MRC)


The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) invests in world-class bioscience research and training on behalf of the UK public. Our aim is to further scientific knowledge, to promote economic growth, wealth and job creation and to improve quality of life in the UK and beyond. Funded by Government, and with an annual budget of around £467M (2012-2013), we support research and training in universities and strategically funded institutes. BBSRC research and the people we fund are helping society to meet major challenges, including food security, green energy and healthier, longer lives. Our investments underpin important UK economic sectors, such as farming, food, industrial biotechnology and pharmaceuticals. For more information about BBSRC, our science and our impact see: For more information about BBSRC strategically funded institutes see:

About MRC

Over the past century, the Medical Research Council has been at the forefront of scientific discovery to improve human health. Founded in 1913 to tackle tuberculosis, the MRC now invests taxpayers' money in some of the best medical research in the world across every area of health. Twenty-nine MRC-funded researchers have won Nobel prizes in a wide range of disciplines, and MRC scientists have been behind such diverse discoveries as vitamins, the structure of DNA and the link between smoking and cancer, as well as achievements such as pioneering the use of randomised controlled trials, the invention of MRI scanning, and the development of a group of antibodies used in the making of some of the most successful drugs ever developed. Today, MRC-funded scientists tackle some of the greatest health problems facing humanity in the 21st century, from the rising tide of chronic diseases associated with ageing to the threats posed by rapidly mutating micro-organisms. The MRC Centenary Timeline chronicles 100 years of life-changing discoveries and shows how our research has had a lasting influence on healthcare and wellbeing in the UK and globally, right up to the present day.

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council

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