Faculty of Biological Sciences

Dr Neil Ranson

BSc, PhD 1997, Bristol
Associate Professor
School of Molecular and Cellular Biology

Background: PhD in Mechanistic Enzymology at the University of Bristol with Professor Tony Clarke, followed by Post-doctoral work cross-training into structural biology with Professor Helen Saibil at Birbkeck College London

Contact:  Astbury 8.108, +44(0) 113 34 37065, email address for  

You can read more about Dr Ranson's interests here:

Research Interests

Cryo-EM of Macromolecular Assemblies including viruses and amyloids

Faculty Research and Innovation

Studentship information

See also:

Modules taught

BIOC1301 - Intro Inte Biochem Mol Process
BIOC1303 - Intro Biochem Problem Solving
BIOC2301 - Interm Integrated Biochemistry
BIOC2302 - Intermediate Biochem: Prac
BIOC2303 - Intermediate Biochem: Skills
BIOC3111/12/BIOL3112/MICR3120 b - ATU 36 - Visualising viruses
BIOC3160 - Lab/Lit/Comp Research Project
BIOC3303 - Advanced Biochem: Skills
BIOL1112 - The Molecules of Life
BIOL5212M/5321M - Bioimaging
BIOL5272M - Advanced Biomolecular Technologies
BMSC2120 - Scientific Skills
MICR3110 - Microbiology Research Programme

Centre membership: The Astbury Centre for Structural Molecular Biology

Group Leader Dr Neil Ranson  (Associate Professor)

Cryo-EM of Macromolecular Assemblies including viruses and amyloids  

Dr Emma Hesketh  (Research Fellow)

Dr Matthew Iadanza  (Research Fellow)


Francis Hopkins  
Daniel Hurdiss  
Nicholas Hurst [bs11nh]  
Ethan Morgan  
Brendan Rogers  
Jaskiran Sabharwal [bs12js]  
Rebecca Thompson [RPG]  

Hurdiss DL, Morgan EL, Thompson RF, Prescott EL, Panou MM, Macdonald A, Ranson NA New Structural Insights into the Genome and Minor Capsid Proteins of BK Polyomavirus using Cryo-Electron Microscopy Structure 24 528-536, 2016
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Huynh NT, Hesketh EL, Saxena P, Meshcheriakova Y, Ku Y-C, Hoang LT, Johnson JE, Ranson NA, Lomonossoff GP, Reddy VS Crystal Structure and Proteomics Analysis of Empty Virus-like Particles of Cowpea Mosaic Virus STRUCTURE 24 567-575, 2016

Rawson S, Iadanza MG, Ranson NA, Muench SP Methods to account for movement and flexibility in cryo-EM data processing. Methods (San Diego, Calif.) -, 2016
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Thompson RF, Walker M, Alistair Siebert C, Muench SP, Ranson NA An introduction to sample preparation and imaging by cryo-electron microscopy for structural biology. Methods (San Diego, Calif.) -, 2016
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Iadanza MG, Jackson MP, Radford SE, Ranson NA MpUL-multi: Software for Calculation of Amyloid Fibril Mass per Unit Length from TB-TEM Images Scientific Reports 6 -, 2016
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RolfssonÓ, Middleton S, Manfield IW, White SJ, Fan B, Vaughan R, Ranson NA, Dykeman E, Twarock R, Ford J, Cheng Kao C, Stockley PG Direct Evidence for Packaging Signal-Mediated Assembly of Bacteriophage MS2 Journal of Molecular Biology 428 431-448, 2016
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Hesketh EL, Meshcheriakova Y, Dent KC, Saxena P, Thompson RF, Cockburn JJ, Lomonossoff GP, Ranson NA Mechanisms of assembly and genome packaging in an RNA virus revealed by high-resolution cryo-EM Nature Communications 6 -, 2015
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Tipping KW, Karamanos TK, Jakhria T, Iadanza MG, Goodchild SC, Tuma R, Ranson NA, Hewitt EW, Radford SE pH-induced molecular shedding drives the formation of amyloid fibril-derived oligomers Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 112 E5691-E5696, 2015
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Geraets JA, Dykeman EC, Stockley PG, Ranson NA, Twarock R Asymmetric Genome Organization in an RNA Virus Revealed via Graph-Theoretical Analysis of Tomographic Data PLoS Computational Biology 11 -, 2015
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Patel N, Dykeman EC, Coutts RHA, Lomonossoff GP, Rowlands DJ, Phillips SEV, Ranson N, Twarock R, Tuma R, Stockley PG, Johnson JE Revealing the density of encoded functions in a viral RNA Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 112 2227-2232, 2015
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Bakker SE, Groppelli E, Pearson AR, Stockley PG, Rowlands DJ, Ranson NA Limits of structural plasticity in a picornavirus capsid revealed by a massively expanded equine rhinitis A virus particle. Journal of Virology 88 6093-6099, 2014
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Goodchild SC, Sheynis T, Thompson R, Tipping KW, Xue WF, Ranson NA, Beales PA, Hewitt EW, Radford SE β2-Microglobulin amyloid fibril-induced membrane disruption is enhanced by endosomal lipids and acidic pH. PLoS One 9 e104492-, 2014
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Dent K, Thompson R, Barker A, Hiscox J, Barr J, Stockley P, Ranson N The Asymmetric Structure of an Icosahedral Virus Bound to Its Receptor Suggests a Mechanism for Genome Release Structure 21 1225-1234, 2013
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Stockley PG, Ranson NA, Twarock R A new paradigm for the roles of the genome in ssRNA viruses FUTURE VIROLOGY 8 531-543, 2013

Ariza A, Tanner SJ, Walter CT, Dent KC, Shepherd DA, Wu W, Matthews SV, Hiscox JA, Green TJ, Luo M, Elliott RM, Fooks AR, Ashcroft AE, Stonehouse NJ, Ranson NA, Barr JN, Edwards TA Nucleocapsid protein structures from orthobunyaviruses reveal insight into ribonucleoprotein architecture and RNA polymerization. Nucleic Acids Research 41 5912-5926, 2013
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Ford RJ, Barker AM, Bakker SE, Coutts RH, Ranson NA, Phillips SE, Pearson AR, Stockley PG Sequence-specific, RNA-protein interactions overcome electrostatic barriers preventing assembly of satellite tobacco necrosis virus coat protein. J Mol Biol 425 1050-1064, 2013
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Keef T, Wardman JP, Ranson NA, Stockley PG, Twarock R Structural constraints on the three-dimensional geometry of simple viruses: Case studies of a new predictive tool Acta Crystallographica Section A: Foundations of Crystallography 69 140-150, 2013
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Stockley PG, Barker AM, Borodavka A, Ford RJ, Pearson AR, Ranson NA, Tuma R, Twarock R, Dykeman E, Phillips SEV, Bakker SE Packaging signals in single-stranded RNA viruses: nature's alternative to a purely electrostatic assembly mechanism Journal of Biological Physics 1-11, 2013
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Bakker SE, Ford RJ, Barker AM, Robottom J, Saunders K, Pearson AR, Ranson NA, Stockley PG Isolation of an asymmetric RNA uncoating intermediate for a single-stranded RNA plant virus. J Mol Biol 417 65-78, 2012
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Dykeman EC, Grayson NE, Toropova K, Ranson NA, Stockley PG, Twarock R Simple Rules for Efficient Assembly Predict the Layout of a Packaged Viral RNA J MOL BIOL 408 399-407, 2011

Toropova K, Stockley PG, Ranson NA Visualising a Viral RNA Genome Poised for Release from Its Receptor Complex J MOL BIOL 408 408-419, 2011

Rolfsson O, Toropova K, Ranson NA, Stockley PG Mutually-induced conformational switching of RNA and coat protein underpins efficient assembly of a viral capsid. J Mol Biol 401 309-322, 2010
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Rolfsson O, Toropova K, Ranson NA, Stockley PG Mutually-induced Conformational Switching of RNA and Coat Protein Underpins Efficient Assembly of a Viral Capsid J MOL BIOL 401 309-322, 2010

Carter SD, Dent KC, Atkins E, Foster TL, Verow M, Gorny P, Harris M, Hiscox JA, Ranson NA, Griffin S, Barr JN Direct visualization of the small hydrophobic protein of human respiratory syncytial virus reveals the structural basis for membrane permeability FEBS LETT 584 2786-2790, 2010

Toropova K, Basnak G, Twarock R, Stockley PG, Ranson NA The three-dimensional structure of genomic RNA in bacteriophage MS2: Implications for assembly J MOL BIOL 375 824-836, 2008

Rolfsson O, Toropova K, Morton V, Francese S, Basnak G, Thompson GS, Homans SW, Ashcroft AE, Stonehouse NJ, Ranson NA, Stockley PG RNA packing specificity and folding during assembly of the bacteriophage MS2 COMPUT MATH METHOD M 9 339-349, 2008

Toropova K, Basnak G, Twarock R, Stockley PG, Ranson NA The three-dimensional structure of genomic RNA in bacteriophage MS2: Implications for assembly, 2007

Ranson NA, Stromer T, Bousset L, Melki R, Serpell LC Insights into the architecture of the Ure2p yeast protein assemblies from helical twisted fibrils Protein Science 15 2481-2487, 2006
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Ranson NA, Clare DK, Farr GW, Houldershaw D, Horwich AL, Saibil HR Allosteric signaling of ATP hydrolysis in GroEL-GroES complexes NAT STRUCT MOL BIOL 13 147-152, 2006

Stockley PG, Ashcroft AE, Francese S, Thompson GS, Ranson NA, Smith AM, Homans SW, Stonehouse NJ Dissecting the fine details of assembly of a T=3 capsid Journal of Theoretical Medicine 6 119-125, 2005

Saibil HR, Ranson NA The chaperonin folding machine TRENDS BIOCHEM SCI 27 627-632, 2002

Ranson NA, Farr GW, Roseman AM, Gowen B, Fenton WA, Horwich AL, Saibil HR ATP-Bound States of GroEL Captured by Cryo-Electron Microscopy Cell 107 869-879, 2001

Roseman AM, Ranson NA, Gowen BT, Fuller SD, Saibil HR Structures of Unliganded and ATP-Bound States of the Escherichia coli Chaperonin GroEL by Cryoelectron Microscopy Journal of Structural Biology 135 115-125, 2001
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Roseman AM, Ranson NA, Gowen B, Fuller SD, Saibil HR The ATP-bound state of the E Coli Chaperonin GroEL studied by Cryo-Electron Microscopy Journal of Structural Biology 135 115-125, 2001

Stockley PG, White SJ, Dykeman E, Manfield I, Rolfsson O, Patel N, Bingham R, Barker A, Wroblewski E, Chandler-Bostock R, Weib EU, Ranson NA, Tuma R, Twarock R Bacteriophage MS2 Genomic RNA Encodes an Assembly Instruction Manual for Its Capsid Bacteriophage -,
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