Location & dates EMBL Heidelberg, Germany 11 - 14 May 2020
Deadlines Registration closed Abstract submission closed
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EMBL Courses and Conferences during the Coronavirus pandemic

With the onsite programme paused, many of our events are now being offered in virtual formats.


Registration is open as usual for many events, with back-up plans in place to move further courses and conferences online as necessary. Registration fees for any events affected by the COVID-19 disruption are fully refundable.


More information for participants of events at EMBL Heidelberg can be found here.

EMBL has taken the difficult decision to pause our programme of external courses and conferences. As a result, we are postponing the meeting to 2022 (new dates to be confirmed) and apologise for the inconvenience.

Symposium Overview

Liquid phase separation is emerging as a common biophysical basis underlying many important cellular functions. This conference will bring together scientists from soft matter polymer physics, molecular “un”-structural biologists, and biologists working in cell, developmental and neurobiology

  • to increase the awareness for how important phase separation is for our understanding of many biological processes
  • to explore the large repertoire of new tools generated by other disciplines that are ripe to be applied to complex problems related to phase separation
  • to close the gap in human potential and transdisciplinary training to tackle the role of phase separation in biology

Session Topics

  • Liquid compartments in the cell
  • Molecular mechanisms of phase separation
  • Phase separation, a polymer physics perspective
  • Phase separation in developmental biology and non-linear signalling
  • The pathological face of phase separation
  • Protein structure in the condensed state
  • Phase separation in neurobiology

What past participants say about the conference:

"I have never been to a conference where every single talk was relevant, exciting, and well-done. This is particularly phenomenal given the interdisciplinary nature of this field." - Carlos Castaneda, Syracuse University, USA

"Although Intrinsically Disordered Proteins and Phase Separation are around for a number of years, this meeting felt like the kick-off for a novel area in molecular biology."Roland Dosch, University Medical Center Göttingen, Germany

"This was the best conference I have attended in years, bring together biophysicists and biologists in an exciting and challenging format. I learnt a lot and have made great contacts for new collaborations." - Sarah Mizielinska, Kings College London, UK