Sir David Klenerman FMedSci FRS

David Klenerman’s research is focused on developing and applying biophysical methods to biological and biomedical problems. His work using fluorescence and scanning probe microscopy has provided new insights into a variety of biomolecular complexes as well as the processes of protein folding and misfolding. David has also developed techniques to image individual protein complexes on the surface of living cells to follow the processes occurring as the adaptive immune response is triggered. These methods are now being used to study neurodegenerative disease.

He is well known for co-inventing a method of high-speed DNA sequencing, known today as Illumina sequencing. The technique, now widely used, utilises a massively parallel array of DNA on a surface and reversible terminators that, upon incorporation into DNA, enable the identification of single nucleotides based on their fluorescence.

David has won a number of awards in recognition of his work, including the Interdisciplinary Award of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) in 2007. In addition to being a Fellow of the Royal Society, he is also a Member of the RSC.

Professional position

  • Biophysical Chemistry Professor, Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge

Subject groups

  • Chemistry

    Chemistry, physical

  • Biochemistry and molecular cell biology

    Biophysics and structural biology


  • Royal Medals

    For their co-development of DNA sequencing techniques transforming biology and genomic medicine.

Sir David Klenerman FMedSci FRS
Elected 2012