Venki Ramakrishnan is a Group Leader of the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB) in Cambridge and President of the Royal Society. He grew up in India where he received his bachelor’s degree in physics before moving to the USA in 1971. On obtaining his PhD in physics in 1976, he switched to molecular biology and after a long career in the USA he moved to Cambridge in 1999 to work at the LMB. He is best known for his work on ribosomes, the large molecules in all cells that read genetic information to make proteins.
Ramakrishnan is a Fellow of the Royal Society, a member of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO), the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, Leopoldina (the German Academy of Sciences) and a Foreign Member of the Indian National Science Academy. He received the Louis-Jeantet Prize for medicine in 2007 and shared the Nobel Prize for chemistry in 2009.