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skirmantas.jpgEvery year Oxford opens its doors to departments, colleges, museums and tourist attractions to the general public as part of Oxford Open Doors. This is an annual weekend event, run by The Oxford Preservation Trust, which encourages locals and visitors to discover and learn more about the city of dreaming spires.

This year over 200 people visited the NDM Research Building, on the weekend of 13th and 14th September, to discover some of the scientific discoveries happening in NDM.

The event gave visitors a chance to learn more about the Department, to meet researchers and to find out about the diverse scientific fields NDM supports, in an interactive atmosphere. Supported by enthusiastic volunteer researchers and staff from the Structural Genomics Consortium, Experimental Medicine, the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, Ludwig Cancer Research, the Target Discovery Institute and NDM Strategic, the weekend was a big success.

tour.jpgOn the Saturday between 10am and 4pm, a science fair took place with hands-on demos and games for all ages. Visitors could extract DNA from strawberries, build models of viruses and learn about tailoring treatments for HCV, discover how drugs are designed with 3D models, make DNA bracelets and more.

sgcOver the weekend, researchers gave eight tours of the Target Discovery Institute. Visitors were shown around the stylish new building, which opened about 18 months ago. As well as interesting facts about the building and the research happening on the different floors, the tour guides included information about their own experiments and answered any questions that the guests had. This meant that each tour was tailored to the interests of that individual audience.  

Both the tours and the science fair had excellent feedback with comments from visitors such as:

“Very good interactive fair and interesting tour for all ages.”

“Really good for young children.”

“Very interesting day.”

“That was brilliant!”

We would like to thank everyone who visited us over the weekend and also all of the volunteers, for making the event a success.

You can listen to Dr Benedikt Kessler's interview on BBC Oxford.