Matters Microbial #4: Extreme Microbial Closeups: Cryo-EM and Fine Structure of Microbes with Ariane Briegel

August 25, 2023

Everyone thinks microbes are very small, and most of them are. But how to see them? The microscope opened a whole new world to the observer, starting with the Dutch microbiologist Antonie van Leeuvenhoek. But photographs and peering through lenses have limitations. Mark introduces his friend and colleague, Ariane Briegel of the Institute of Biology at Leiden University to Matters Microbial. She discusses how her own work can allow us to see microbes at extremely fine detail using a technique called cryo-electron microscopy (cryEM). She will also discuss her path in science.

Host: Mark O. Martin

Guest: Ariane Briegel

Download MM #4 (32 MB .mp3, 44 min)
Subscribe: Apple Podcasts, Spotify

Become a patron of Matters Microbial!

  • The Martian meteorite from which my specimen was taken is described here
  • Custom enamel pins by Hartiful can be found here
  • The website of the great microbiologist and science artist Lizah van der Aart is here.  
  • Here is a video discussing the role played by van Leeuvenhoek in microbial science that is SO worth your time.
  • Dr. Briegel’s lab website is very interesting.
  • An explainer about cryoEM can be found here
  • A really fine talk by Dr. Briegel about her work from ASM Microbe a few years ago.

Intro music is by Reber Clark

Send your questions and comments to

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

MicrobeTV © 2023