University of Oxford
After completing a degree in Chemistry at the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki (Greece), Achilles Kapanidis obtained a Master’s in Food Science and a Doctorate in Biological Chemistry, both at Rutgers University (New Jersey, USA). After holding research scientist positions in single-molecule biophysics at Berkeley and UCLA, he started a research group as a senior lecturer at Oxford University in 2005, and became of Professor of Biological Physics in 2013; in 2011, Prof Kapanidis became a fellow of the European Research Council, and in 2016, he became a Wellcome Trust Investigator.
Prof Kapanidis is currently leading a group of physical and biological scientists, known as the “Gene Machines” group. The group studies biological machinery involved in gene expression, maintenance, and regulation, focusing mainly on gene transcription and DNA repair. The main tool of the group is single-molecule fluorescence microscopy, a technique that measures nanometre distances and molecular interactions in real time; the same method is used for performing super-resolution imaging and single-molecule tracking inside living cells. The work of the group is multidisciplinary, combining optics/photonics, imaging, biochemistry, molecular biology, modelling, and signal processing.
Prof Kapanidis has also been pursuing compact single-molecule imaging since 2006, a project that culminated with the development of a microscope currently being commercialized via an Oxford spin-out company.