Emma Lundberg (Stanford and KTH Royal Institute of Technology)

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Peter O'Toole: Hi! I'm Peter at all, and welcome to this episode of the microscopists. Today I'm joined by Emma Lundberg from Stanford and and Katie H. Board the Institute of Technology. Emma, how are you today?

Emma Lundberg: I'm doing great Thank you. Thanks for talking to me.

Peter O'Toole: I'm gonna say the first bit was quite a math for Stanford and Kth Royal Institute of Technology, which suggests you've got two labs.

Peter O'Toole: How does that work

Emma Lundberg: I do at the moment I do so. I've been in Sweden, for I got my Phd. At at Kh, and I've been there working with you. I'm pretty not less ever since,

Emma Lundberg: and a full professor there and then. I spent a couple of years at Stanford at two thousand and seventeen, eighteen and nineteen, at Stanford as a visiting professor, and after I was in the middle of the pandemic we decided that we were actually going to go back to the Us. And I accepted a position at ten. Your decision at Stanford,

Emma Lundberg: and right now I have one leg in each country, and my lab is halfway here. I'm building the lab at Stanford, which is fun and exciting right now. All the computational parties here, and the wet lab is in Sweden. So i'm a master of juggling time zones at the moment. And the master of early morning zoom meetings.

Peter O'Toole: Yeah, that I can imagine. And you.

Peter O'Toole: I I I asked you actually that started before we started any question I cannot ask you. I've got to ask you this. Can you look insanely young, and you have a professorship, and you've got a position at Stanford. How old are you?

Emma Lundberg: I'm Forty-one.

Peter O'Toole: Okay, You don't look forty-one.

Emma Lundberg: Well, that's amazing

Emma Lundberg: to have got to what? But a stellar career so far, I think. I usually ask people. You know what they wish they've done, and you're only part. You're not even halfway through your career yet. Touchy, I will come back to the split labs. I'm gonna

Peter O'Toole: go back, being, as you know, you, on this della trajectory when you were ten.

Emma Lundberg: What did you want to be? A pilot

Peter O'Toole: pilot?

Emma Lundberg: Yeah,

Emma Lundberg: Scientist was not on my radar whatsoever.

Emma Lundberg: I think it was fun fun flying that that I I I had lots of different ideas. I I never had this like one dream. I want to become this one thing for me. It's always been.

Emma Lundberg: I've had many different jobs, Let's say summer jobs growing up and things like that, and it always ended up with. If I liked it. It was because of the people that I work with

Emma Lundberg: like I can actually, you know, in retrospect, think that I could have had many different careers, and and could have chosen many different career paths, and I would have probably loved it if I like the people that I work with it as long as I find it stimulating somehow, and you know I like the team science as well. So it's important to me.

Peter O'Toole: So in that case you, from being wanting to be a pilot, you when you start to get. When did you start to get interested in science and you you want to go in that direction?

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, I was always interested in in. I guess the human body science, medicine things like that. And I was thinking of, maybe going into the Md.

Emma Lundberg: You know trajectory, but I didn't really have the grades for it to be honest. So then I was like, add, Do I want to try to up migrate and get into med school or no. I'm just,

Emma Lundberg: you know, study biotechnology. It's close enough. It's interesting with drugs and drug development. Let's let's do that. And Then I decided to do that, or actually I started out chemistry, and then I I swapped to to by engineering

Emma Lundberg: at that at degree level you swapped.

Emma Lundberg: It was actually after one year. So it was that for one year into the butcher.

Peter O'Toole: So I've got to ask, Why do you? Why did you leave the ship for chemistry.

Emma Lundberg: I just found bioengineering so much more fun, engineering proteins, and everything you can do with the human body, and it was just much more appealing to me, and much more fun.

Peter O'Toole: I'm looking at your research that you've got is very sort of obviously you've got the Ai side the computational side. But you've got the wet lab side, which is, I would argue, quite biochemistry driver in some respects. So as a chemistry, Do you think actually having that chemistry founding really helps on that side.

Emma Lundberg: I don't think it really helped them outside. To be honest for me it was was too early on, and then I actually my Phd. I did on small recombinant finders, so developing smaller prominent finders for different protein. So that was more on the kind of protein engineering side.

Emma Lundberg: But what I do think has helped me a lot is the the kind of engineering perspective I like to automate things and scale things up and and do that which has been very helpful in the human protein at last project.

Emma Lundberg: So I like I like pipe heading robots, and you know

Emma Lundberg: things like that

Emma Lundberg: for those listening. What is the human protein at the sort of cell atlas?

Emma Lundberg: Yes, the human protein atlas is a large project and a database that you can find at protein atlas dot org. It's one of the largest biological databases. I think we have one and a half million users worldwide per year,

Emma Lundberg: and what we do there is that we present. This project was started by Professor Metiya Zulan. After the genome project was finished, I would say, and The aim of this project was to understand where the protein that our genes encode for are located in our body and in the tissue level, and also at the subcellular level. So at

Emma Lundberg: when I got my Phd. I was recruited to set up the subcellular part of this project so, or the cell Atlas, where we map where in our cells the protein are localized. If they're in the mitochondria and the nucleus to gain clues about their functions.

Emma Lundberg: So this has been a very, very, very large-scale project. It's been running for nearly two decades, and it's involved many people in Sweden and all over the world. So

Emma Lundberg: it's been a very fun ride it still is, you know. I think I can appreciate how many proteins have you so far localized, if that's a right term to use for it.

Emma Lundberg: Yes, that's that's all a matter of definition. We've generated antibodies for almost all human proteins, and we've tested all of those antibodies. We Haven't approved all of them. How many?

Emma Lundberg: So we have about currently that the estimate is that we have about twenty thousand per encoding genes

Emma Lundberg: in the human genome. It's almost exactly that, and we have probably nineteen thousand antibodies for over nineteen thousand of these proteins, and then in the the tissue atlas of the protein atlas. We've mapped nearly eighteen thousand proteins, and in the Sal Atlas we're at fourteen thousand one hundred,

Emma Lundberg: and this is more a matter of it's not a limitation of the antibodies, but it's a limitation of what proteins are actually expressed in the material that we're studying.

Emma Lundberg: So in an average cell line you Don't find more than maybe twelve thousand proteins express

Emma Lundberg: and cell lines are pretty similar, so we don't find all proteins for expressed only at developmental stages. For example,

Emma Lundberg: it's also hard to capture secreted protein

Emma Lundberg: course inside of cells.

Peter O'Toole: The one thing is sequencing the human genome

Peter O'Toole: that's pretty. Linear But when you're fishing

Peter O'Toole: in different cells for different proteins, and trying to look at the localization and making sure the antibody works because you might not necessarily work. So they might give a false negative. You might get cross-reaction or false positives.

Peter O'Toole: Eighteen thousand. You! You sent me some images and

Peter O'Toole: pulled it up for this reason, but you sent me one of your fluorescence.

Emma Lundberg: Yes,

Emma Lundberg: ah! The the nuclear heart! That is just an image. This is a ah present image of a cell. The nucleus blue is the Dna, and it's forms of art. Here the green is acting Filaments and breadth is mitochondria, and this image I just sent you, because that was what appealed me to to go into this area with microscopy, because I I just think it's beautiful. And sometimes,

Emma Lundberg: you know, in this case I do know what the markers are, and they are specific. But sometimes the antibody might be unspecific, but the image is so beautiful, Right? So I just find it. I like it you work with with visually, you know, attractive media citizens.

Peter O'Toole: Yeah, I'm. In the middle of two hearts now. So i'm probably breaking this heart, which is not a good thing, and I I think, what's really fascinating You've got three colors here. So you've got the nucleus. You've got the mitochondria and you've got a size skeleton. So you've got those labeled when you're trying to identify your target, you're going to have to have another antibody added to these

Peter O'Toole: correlate which organelle which part of the cell it is in. That's one antibody

Peter O'Toole: her next government,

Emma Lundberg: one antibody per experiment. So three reference markers one antibody. So you can do the math if we want to map twenty thousand proteins in a variety of different different cell lines. That's a lot of samples to prepare.

Emma Lundberg: Why, we need automation.

Peter O'Toole: How long would it take to acquire an image like this

Emma Lundberg: with it all optimize to get the laser powers right? It's sensitive,

Peter O'Toole: right?

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, Yeah, an image like this takes less than a minute or a minute or something. We do high resolution line scanning confocal imaging,

Emma Lundberg: and to get the highest possible subcellular resolution in the recent ah facilities and time So but you can kind of position us somewhere. It's not high content imaging where you have. For example, do drug screening, and you add lots of drugs, and you see an image with exactly the same parameters. And you just

Emma Lundberg: feed plates into the microscopes. That's not what we're doing, and we do want high resolution. But we're not. We don't want to do one sample one at a time manually, either. So we're somewhere in between there, right and for a long time the the body legs have moved over the years. Right. You automate one step in the bottom like it somewhere else, and then you automate that. And the bottleneck is somewhere else, but

Emma Lundberg: reasonably preparing more than if we do it in multiple plates preparing more than a couple of multiple plates a day wouldn't make sense, because we we don't need a higher throughput than that. So preparing, let's say, five hundred immune sting samples a week. That's quite high capacity, and that means that we can image one plate, for example, overnight,

Emma Lundberg: and that's fine in terms of throughput. So we never had to push the imaging further than that.

Peter O'Toole: I it. It is a crazy. It is a crazy amount, especially when you think about the the false leads, and the the and and and all of that. And this is this is moving. So i'm going to come back to some of these bits in a bit, but you just describe the the size of the number of images you're acquiring

Emma Lundberg: the data size that you're getting off. This is also going to be really big. I presume you Haven't got someone looking at every image. But you're going to, probably, then have some sort of image analysis to help assist with this to have it. How have you approached that?

Emma Lundberg: Yes, So over the years we have, I have looked at very many of the images in the protein Atlas, I tell you sometimes you can almost. You should have had a quest. You could have showed me an image, and I could have guessed which word in it.

Emma Lundberg: Ah, but no! In the beginning we started out annotating all images manually. I think that's also good for really internalizing the quality and and the different quality approval steps that you have to to build into your pipeline. And we did that for a long time, and the problem for automating the

Emma Lundberg: classification of these patterns. It's been that we have.

Emma Lundberg: So let me just revert to the problem right? And why we've automated minimized it in different ways. So the problem is, we: We have an image of a cell with these three reference markers, and then we have a pretty new interest, and that protein can be in the nucleus and the cytosol mitochondriac

Emma Lundberg: all together right now, and we're classed by around thirty, four different sex structures or substructures for the cell. But that's not it, because we have also shown. And this was not very known before we showed that in a paper in two thousand and seventeen, that half of all human proteins actually localized to multiple compartments in the cell at the same time,

Emma Lundberg: which is very interesting from a functional perspective, but sticking to the technical aspects. This means that a classifier needs to be able to classify mixed patterns,

Emma Lundberg: and it might be so that ten percent of the protein is in the mitochondria at ninety percent in the Cytosol, or vice versa. So this makes the the image classification problem much more tricky. And the second thing is that we work with many, many different cell lines.

Emma Lundberg: The Allies represented in this a lot, us today, and they look morphologically different. And,

Emma Lundberg: for example, a Golgi apparatus will look slightly different in these different sunlines, so it needs to be a very generalizable model to be robust.

Emma Lundberg: So for a long time we just realized that we won't be able to do it. So we have a very nice internally, a developed limb system where we can annotate even just blindly, and we have different layers of people doing it. So we all the proteins in the protein Atlantic today have been manually assessed both in terms of of the label, and in terms of the

Emma Lundberg: the quality

Emma Lundberg: and in relation to literature. So that's a lot of work, and that's why we call actually the protein that has a knowledge face, and maybe not just a database, because it is curated data.

Emma Lundberg: Ah, but then, over the years we work to, because now we can generate more data. So we we really need to scale the image annotations as well. So one. But at first we thought, let's just crowdsource. This people are very good at recognizing patterns. Even kids can generalize very well. This is an image of a cat. This is a really chat. This is the drawn chat, for example,

Emma Lundberg: so maybe we can use the general public to help us annotate these images. And for that we did a Citizen science project.

Emma Lundberg: However, that Citizen Science Project was great fun, very successful, but not scalable still, because we don't want to pass our images through a game all the time

Emma Lundberg: when we wanted annotate it. So we've also worked with it. It wasn't just pictures on there, and people engaging it. So it you actually gamified it. Is that the right gamification. It's not quite the one. But you made a game.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, and it's it's and sides.

Emma Lundberg: Yes, so inspired by fold it in these previous amazing games where they gamified a scientific task. The Id behind this game. I should say that this is supposed to collaboration with Akilla Center at the company called Mmos that is still running today, producing beautiful citizen science projects.

Emma Lundberg: And the idea here was to make use of of the general public and and build a game. But the hard work with a game is really to get people to start to play it. Even if you look at commercial mobile games today, they will usually pay people to start to play. For example, That's how you get to get one. One

Emma Lundberg: attraction. So maybe that we had was that instead of building a standalone game If we inject the scientific task into an existing game with a big player base, then maybe we can do citizen science in a very efficient way.

Peter O'Toole: So this was part of the marketing. This this is you in the game.

Emma Lundberg: This is Professor Lundberg in the game. I could not control her in the game. So she was an a non-player character in there, and it's actually kind of a fun story, because I never we were working So my team, and at the last team in Switzerland and the producers of this game called the Evil Line. One hundred and one

Emma Lundberg: uses the the companies called Ccp games on on Iceland in regularly, and they were what we were working together, having weekly meetings on this game and designing different aspects of it. It was a really fun interdisciplinary project. And then one evening I get an E-made saying by way,

and can we also is it okay with you that we put this avatar in the game

Emma Lundberg: they had it wasn't this image. It was another one when I was wearing a very tight lab coat, and I never met these people.

Emma Lundberg: So she just Google googled me. It's f me on images everywhere. And she made this pretty realistic, but of course

Emma Lundberg: gamified version of me, and I was terrified, and I my instant reaction was No, no, no way. I'm going to do that. That's just you know too much. Um! And then my husband told me he's like Oh, but you're always talking about women in science and being a role model. And now you get the chance of of having a female cool avatar in a game that mainly has main have as like a million-made players

Emma Lundberg: and you're going to say no to that. You You can never ever talk about this problem again if you say no to this,

Emma Lundberg: and I kind of saw his point there, and it was a fun one

Emma Lundberg: You've sent me the picture, so you must be proud of it. It's a very good avatar.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, that avatar is great,

Peter O'Toole: not in a scientific lab coat, but in a space age, roboty type

Emma Lundberg: bullet, three combat combat suit.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, thank combat type, base combat suit. I think

Peter O'Toole: it is worth if you are listening, just going to cover a picture. And actually, i'll ask you if you can get it. Picture, maybe on the the tweets and stuff as well, because it is,

Emma Lundberg: It's a very cool avatar who to to have it? She has Frick, or even

Emma Lundberg: like I read.

Emma Lundberg: If you look closely, you can see the freckles

Peter O'Toole: I've now got to go back.

Peter O'Toole: It's a it's It's

Peter O'Toole: that's really cool. Isn't it.

Peter O'Toole: I uh right. I want an avatar.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, so in the game after me there was actually a Nobel Laureate that was the Avatar, and they were discovering exoplanet in this game. So the platform has been being used for other games later. So that's also fun. It's the game cool. The game is called Project Discovery within within the virtual universe of the Science Fiction game live online.

Emma Lundberg: So the scientific Mini game that we develop is is project discovering.

Peter O'Toole: So it's very different, because I don't know how well you know Lucy Collinson and her Citizen Science Project, which is very much signing up to draw around objects and the Ttts. You listen to Lucy's podcast, if you list us that it's really good to hear how she's engaged. This is a very different way of engaging citizen science.

Emma Lundberg: I have a pretty sanity check to check that. What they're doing is correct.

Emma Lundberg: Otherwise.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah. So there, there's lots of funny stories about this, and and there's lots of things that we we spent. The game was running for one year, and during one year we had, I think, three hundred and three three hundred and twenty thousand gamers that provided thirty, two million image classification. So It's really one

Emma Lundberg: remarkable, And if you look at the time they spent in the mid the Mini game, they spent seventy working years in the Mini game, classifying images for us. You can imagine that it's. It's great help. But then we spent about a year to analyze the data to make sure, like because the big. We were being questioned by the scientific community. Can you really ask

Emma Lundberg: your average gamer to help you classify images and build science upon that? And we were convinced that we could, but of course we had to show it so in the game that the players had to go through a training a tutorial and then training before they could classify real images. But then it's all a matter of incentive.

Emma Lundberg: I would say that you have to balance so one incentive that is like actually turned out to be important is the greater good contributing to something that is way to good. We got a lot of comments. If we were, you know, reading Reddit and other other forums that people were very. They knew that the results of this project would feed into the human protein at less that is open source, open access to everyone. You can use it for mer to use, or more commercial use, so that that gave people a motivation to contribute to it.

Emma Lundberg: But then also they were also in-game rewards and other motivations. So that you could benefit in the game by helping out with you.

Emma Lundberg: But there we had a little fun thing that we wanted to try, because gamers are always going to try to gain the game right. And So we thought, How are we going to reward them? So either we reward them on how well they agree with the community right?

Emma Lundberg: But surely they're going to gain that, and they're going to agree on something and and and just get high rewards. But let's try it. But we prepared in the background. We had prepared a a set of control images, otherwise that we would randomly insert and only reward them on their performance on the controlled images where we had the answer basically

Emma Lundberg: because they were unattaining locations, the novo that we hadn't planetated in the protein Atlas?

Emma Lundberg: And did they know that they existed? So they knew they had to perform. Well, no, they knew they knew that they had to. No. In the beginning we launched it. So that you, if you agree with the you know consensus. You get reward, or I don't think we even said that, but

Emma Lundberg: they figured it out. It took a week after seven days. We started seeing means like spam, the cytoplasm, and everyone just click cytoplas, and we could see that they all did, and the accuracy dropped on the control images. Then we were from school.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah. Yeah. So we were just thinking: this is just fun to see how quickly they game it. And then we stopped and added these um control images, and then instantly they started performing because they didn't know which images were controlled. They could see it after. Okay, this was just a control. This is what I'm ranked at, and and then immediately they started playing well again.

Peter O'Toole: Have you played it yourself?

Emma Lundberg: I? Of course I've played it a lot while we developed it. I didn't want to play it, since I'm. One of the experts, and I contribute to the expert annotations that we were comparing with, so I didn't want to confound it.

Emma Lundberg: And we were quite busy answering forums and being of support in the game.

Peter O'Toole: So you said your husband said, you, you, hatch, have your own avatar. What are your children thinking of it?

Emma Lundberg: By then? They were a bit too young. I think they're they don't really care

Emma Lundberg: to be honest, I don't know they think it's cool. My younger ones, said My mom is famous, but she doesn't really know what and in what? What game it's not in the games she's playing. So yeah, they're They're I'm: just their mom. They don't.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah,

Peter O'Toole: three. Was it three hundred and twenty thousand, did you say?


Peter O'Toole: that's a huge, huge number. So you sent me a picture of your your, your family as well.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, this is my family family a couple of years back. It's my husband in the green pants, my dad and blue pants, and then, if my two daughters, they are nine and ten now in we're in Anita.

Emma Lundberg: So this was a few years ago.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, yeah, exactly. This was a few years ago, and this photo is taken at my favorite place on this earth, which is a place in the north of Sweden, called the Dix Kansen, where I, where I spent a lot of time when I was young, and we also ski there quite a lot now at the cabin, and it's a beautiful place because it's, you know,

Emma Lundberg: midnight sun in the summers, and in the winters it doesn't get bright, but you can ski in May with the sun up in the middle of the night, so it's beautiful,

Peter O'Toole: so he's skiing your David Relaxation?

Emma Lundberg: Yes, any skiing snowboarding I love. That's my favorite thing to do. I'm trying to learn It's very fun. But i'm not quite good at it yet. So mountain biking is my new thing. Since I moved to California, I figured I have to have something more sun-friendly.

Peter O'Toole: That is what it's going to ask you next, because I was staying here to Stamford. The skiing opportunities are not quite so grand. Certainly in the summer it's certainly not possible.

Emma Lundberg: No, but it's it's not that far to go to Lake Town

Emma Lundberg: to ski in the winter, so we do get a lot of skiing, and we have season passes here as well.

Emma Lundberg: So how have you found moving? It's just quite a big move to move the family over. I guess they're young. But

Peter O'Toole: how challenging was it to move across?

Emma Lundberg: Yeah. And and now we've done it twice, right? We did it for this sabbatical, and that was very easy. We packed up a couple of bags, and this is going to last for a year, and we're doing this, and it's an adventure. It's a year that was,

Emma Lundberg: I would say, pretty easy. Of course you still have to understand, you know. Get a new phone, get an electricity, you know, set up everything for life, but that was pretty fine. And then this time, when we move more

Emma Lundberg: long term, it was a different thing, because we packed up the house and shipped our things, and of course we know the area. The kids know their friends at school. I know Stanford, so in one way it felt easier. But it was also emotionally a bigger move. I think

Emma Lundberg: so. Yeah, but no, no, it's It's just a lot of work, and I would say it's It's super fun, and I think you grow as a person and you learn a lot. Stanford is an amazingly inspiring environment, and they love this kind of entrepreneurial

Emma Lundberg: ecosystem that exists here. I think it's stimulating, and so it's a great place to be, but but it takes time to move, and it takes time to settle in and moving during the pandemic. Surely didn't make it easier.

Emma Lundberg: It took us six months from when our container shipped until we could unpack it. So we basically lived without furniture for six months.


Peter O'Toole: I've got deck chairs, and

Emma Lundberg: yeah,

Emma Lundberg: like shares and mattresses on the floor, and some we have very nice neighbors and friends here. So of course we borrowed the things that we needed. But

Emma Lundberg: yeah, it was fun for a while camping out in your own house, but it was very good to get our stuff in the end as well.

Peter O'Toole: What are you missing?

Peter O'Toole: I? You know you moved over. What do you miss most

Emma Lundberg: from Sweden, my family

Emma Lundberg: and France absolutely

How you you develop new friends? Obviously,

Emma Lundberg: Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Family family, all-time friends and also certain types of food. And and I think the for the

Emma Lundberg: right. Now, we're just enjoying the summer weather here, I think think at some point we'll miss having four seasons.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, there's a lot to be said for seasons.

Peter O'Toole: Yeah, yeah. And that change and seem to look forward to the ever changing

Peter O'Toole: It's, greenery or lack of greenery. It's

Emma Lundberg: yes, exactly three. No, I yeah, I can see that.

Peter O'Toole: But will you miss the dark days?

Emma Lundberg: No, what a baby it's kind of coastal, so I don't know I never really, since I grew up in the north of Sweden, that the winters are darker and the summers are very bright. I i'm not really bothered by the dark,

Emma Lundberg: so I I don't know i'm

Emma Lundberg: i'm not sure. I don't know i'll get. I have to get back to you on. If I've missed it or not. But it was not the thing that made him, but I crossed the face. We live in the dark, anyway. Don't. We

Emma Lundberg: go to work in the talk. Go to a dart lab. Come back in the darkest, You?

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, that's something that we actually do. Okay, change your subjects a little bit. What was your first microscope that you can remember professionally using?

Emma Lundberg: Not professionally. Well, it was. It was actually ah an on-size microscope. But I that's not the one I want to talk about. I want to talk about the first that I bought for setting up the human protein Atlas, because that's I think more made a more significant

Emma Lundberg: yeah memory for me. So when when I was

Emma Lundberg: after my Phd. Going to set up this salad, less of the human body in Atlas. Of course I had. We had to think about automation, and at that point alying scanning of focal microscope. The problem is that we don't know what the expression level of every protein is, and we don't know the locations we need to be able to.

Emma Lundberg: We really adapt the dynamic range, and we want high resolution. There's no what it made in microscopes that could do this at this time. Point and the companies tried to sell us like content screeners. It's like you saw us different things, and then one hundred and fifty.

Emma Lundberg: I made the executive decision to actually order a regular co-founder microscope that we could automate ourselves, but flip it

Emma Lundberg: and make it upright, so that we just steal the plates, flip them, could add oil on top and then automate it, And you know, the the sales representatives are like, and we're like, Are you sure you're gonna order two of those? Really

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, yeah, okay. And And in retrospect. They told me, like it was actually really good discussion decision. And you managed to build a a solid pipeline based on that decision. But it was it was, it was questioned, quite a lot in the beginning,

Emma Lundberg: so that that decision i'm very happy with, because, thanks to that, we were able to actually do overnight runs with oil, immersion, microscopy, and and you generate the data at this scale, so it it wasn't the fanciest microscope or anything. It was a work that we flicked the right way for us.

Peter O'Toole: And of course these are fixed and permeableized cells. So they could be.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, exactly. We just had to sacrifice, because in order to seal them properly, we needed to use a metal foil, so we had to sacrifice the bright field. But so

Emma Lundberg: you you say it better.

Peter O'Toole: The rest in image.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, yeah, that this is something that we're quite interested in. My lab is living a lot at. Now, when we've mapped where the gradients are in the different locations. But we also. So we've shown that half of all proteins can be found in multiple faces and have multiple functions. But then we often see images like this. So these cells are, you know, genetically identical cells, but obviously they don't look the same.

Emma Lundberg: We can see that some cells are brighter and some are dumer.

Emma Lundberg: Here. You can also see that sometimes the protein is in the nucleus. Sometimes it's in the cytosol. Sometimes it's on the plasma membrane. It. It seems to be a lot of spatial and moral dynamics going on here which is super interesting. So we've been able to map that twenty percent of all cruise shows signs of species to moral dynamics,

Emma Lundberg: and at first we thought that it would all map to the cell cycle. And well, it didn't one-third we can explain by the cell cycle, but we found many new cell cycle proteins that are ah stable at the Arnie level, but regulated at the post

Emma Lundberg: post-transcriptional level. But then we also find a lot of metabolic. Enzymes that behave like this, and I think that is super fascinating. Why are Why are we seeing so much

Emma Lundberg: spatial temporal dynamics of metabolic enzymes? The function in the nucleus is often unknown. This example is in a lace one. So here we know that it performs three completely different functions in the nucleus plasma, membrane, and and cytosol. But it's one of the few examples where we actually have this knowledge. So right now the lab is thinking a lot about. How can we build

It's it?

Emma Lundberg: How can we do functional screenings to assess

Emma Lundberg: functions of proteins in given locations, and not just knock this gene out and assess the function. So if it's not cell cycle, is it

Peter O'Toole: Apoptosis related

Emma Lundberg: itself that seems to be moving in and out of metabolic space,

Emma Lundberg: for example, or other processes. Maybe there's other oscillatory processes happening that we don't know of, or maybe it's it's certain properties being optimized at a population a level, and not at a cell level, so that you should have some kind of buffering effect for perturbations. If your population has different capacities, so it's It's just a lot of unknowns, but it's a very fascinating. It's it's

Emma Lundberg: lot of fascinating. Questions, and it's a in my opinion, I think it's. It's

Emma Lundberg: a strong argument for why, if we want to model cells and predictable behavior, I think we need spatial information to do that, because how can we otherwise capture these ah changes in in function, probably depending on where the protein is?

Peter O'Toole: We'll talk after I have a just a thought, but I won't do that on doing the podcast we'll get too geeky.

Emma Lundberg: We'll come back to that afterwards, because have you? Who's been your inspirations? You

Peter O'Toole: throughout your career?

Emma Lundberg: Um! That's a tough one. I would wanted to prepare for that question. I've had many different people as inspirations during my career I think different aspects. You know some people are give great talks, and I admire them when I listen to their talks, and other people are good leaders, and

Emma Lundberg: you know, scientists and some people are just amazing team players. I think I've had. I can list a lot of people, so I prefer not to mention one here, because you will leave some out there. That that yeah,

Emma Lundberg: yeah, no.

Peter O'Toole: What would you say has been the most challenging time in your career to date.

Emma Lundberg: Oh, i'm an optimist. I forget them.

Emma Lundberg: But the pandemic, of course, was challenging, I think, for a lot of people to try to work from home, and and, you know, keep a distance, and and

Emma Lundberg: just cope with that. Happy because you like. So my lab is. It depends a bit on how you account it, because it's also. Ah, I would say around fifteen to eighteen people in my lab, and then there's a associated core facility that are about five people as well, that we work very, very closely with.

Emma Lundberg: But I think that

the most challenging time,

Emma Lundberg: I think for me personally, a challenging time was after we released a big sell at last in two thousand and sixteen, and the science publication in two thousand and seventeen. I was struggling a bit with. So what do I do now right now? I've been working on that for so long for a decade.

Emma Lundberg: So what do I do now? And I I didn't go abroad for Post-doc, and and that's when I started to think about the sabbatical and everything. So at that time I had it as well should I go to the industry, or maybe I should do something completely different. But at that time it had been a bit too much of the same thing,

Emma Lundberg: I think in general we have a We've had a very nice theme, and we do science in a team way so most often, and even though it's been tough times. We've been able to really come together and do it as a team, because, of course, we have tough crunch times every year in front of every release, but we can make it a fun team effort, at least,

Peter O'Toole: so it's no real bad times.

Peter O'Toole: Okay, What's been the biggest highlight of your career.

Emma Lundberg: Oh, the biggest highlight! I think it is. Some like the release of the Sal. Atlas was a great highlight, and you know I don't know. I mean people person highlights are when people get their, you know, defend their Phd. Thesis, or things like that are always always amazing.

Peter O'Toole: See,

Peter O'Toole: I'm just thinking you you you find yourself floundering on. I'm not saying floundering. You found yourself So you did. You release a sell at less? You didn't know. Wait, and maybe what the next big project was. It was going to have such a big impact.

Peter O'Toole: How big a distraction was it?

Peter O'Toole: Because once that was released.

Peter O'Toole: You're going to be hugely popular on the conference scene for plenary lectures everywhere across the world. The

Peter O'Toole: how crazy the time was that!

Emma Lundberg: Um! It was a bit crazy, but I also I I like it so I think those It was a very good time to do that to really get to, to go to a lot of different conferences, to give lectures and and listen to pictures there, and think about. So What's the next step? What's the next frontier? Where do we want to push this right? Because we have this rich resource of images that we can mine in ways that

Emma Lundberg: we couldn't before right, and Maybe we can ask but answer questions that other people Aren't even asking so trying to figure out like, because there's so many interesting findings that we have

Emma Lundberg: in this set of images, and trying to figure out what direction do we actually go for? And right now it's been towards that single cell towards the goal of providing

Emma Lundberg: spatial, temporal model of the entire protein in the Un. Cell.

Peter O'Toole: That I don't think i'm going to get an answer to the next question, though

Peter O'Toole: all the conferences you go to being to. What is your favorite conference?

Emma Lundberg: It's

Emma Lundberg: I can give you a question. Uh I

Emma Lundberg: I mean there's a lot to where, where's the meeting? What part of the world? Who else is there? So I can probably pick many favorites but one. That's

Emma Lundberg: It's not my favorite scientific conference for sure, but it's a different. It was at a fanfest meeting in Las Vegas for this game, and I was giving it a plenary lecture there, and I don't know how many thousands of people there were in the audience, and there were like ten thousand people on which,

Emma Lundberg: and that was a very interesting experience, because it's not like a polite,

Emma Lundberg: quiet, scientific audience. People, were you

Emma Lundberg: booing and sharing during the talk, and it was just a very different experience.

Peter O'Toole: But did you say they were booing as well as cheering?

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, Yeah, Because they were competing different teams and and and they were booing about certain things spam the side of Class Boo. Why did you remove that? And I don't remember the exact things, but it it struck me as very. It was a very different experience, and it it was fun.

Peter O'Toole: Tell me, Jack's demographs afterwards.

Emma Lundberg: No, I I do not have to do autographs. I have been recognized, I think once on the street as Professor Lundberg from the game,

Emma Lundberg: we're very honored by that,

Emma Lundberg: you weren't wearing a black combat suit,

Emma Lundberg: not a live code, either. So. Yeah, but it was fun. We actually had a very. It was also fun. We made for one of the another The next year's big game events. The fantas We developed a little Mini game where you could compete against each other on on classifying images,

Emma Lundberg: and then we had like you qualify in the semi-finals, and then a final. It was so much fun that was actually It's like citizen science as a d sport or something it was. It was really fun, and the winner got a a human, pretty nut, But lab both, and he was wearing it all night. It was.

Peter O'Toole: It sounds like really good fun,

Emma Lundberg: and I, global confidence is a good fun. But that sounds baby. Yeah, We We could learn something from that, I think, in terms of the atmosphere. Maybe not booing, but you know a little bit more infraction during the talks could be nice.

Peter O'Toole: Just encourage it to just tell it to you.

Emma Lundberg: That's what it's done and see what scientists are quite serious, though sometimes, Aren't: They:

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, Exactly. So that yeah, we all have to help out to make that happen. I think.

Peter O'Toole: Yeah, I think there's a lot of guarded behavior in the scientific community, and it's not quite so easy. We

Peter O'Toole: just we've had conferences where you can get the audience really going,

Peter O'Toole: you know, when you go to a conference and you get two parallel sessions,

Peter O'Toole: you're next door to another parallel session with a competing field you

Peter O'Toole: you have to do is say, at the end. I want the loudest applause. I want whistles. I want groups, and generally the audience will do it. But

Peter O'Toole: the best thing is, if you know the chairs of the competing session. I've done this once, and they've come out and go.

Emma Lundberg: Your session must have been amazing. The applause, the cheers at the end was just unbelievable. No, I didn't just everyone up to do it just to make them feel

Emma Lundberg: It sounds fun. You can't be encouraged.

Peter O'Toole: I have some quick five questions, but I won't. Go to this. But I will ask one question: Why are we talking about conferences, we

Peter O'Toole: if you were to when you get invited. Usually you get taken out for dinner at some point, and sometimes you don't get a choice of what you're eating. You'll get taken somewhere. Very swish and foodie served in front of you. What is your nightmare food to have put in front of you.

Emma Lundberg: Well, that would be some kind of I don't know worms or insects, or anything like that I have I? I can eat most. I'll eat most food, except what i'm allergic to, and

Emma Lundberg: but that I have a hard time with.

Emma Lundberg: I'll probably eat it because i'm very polite. But I I would struggle.

Peter O'Toole: And what about what would be the the best thing that they could put in front of you? What is your favorite food?

Emma Lundberg: The best thing would be some kind of

Emma Lundberg: modern take on on vegan food, actually, or vegetarian food. So we're really trying to become more sustainable than eating more vegetarian food. But it's. Vegan cooking is hard, I think so. It's some inspiration. They're buying us,

Emma Lundberg: I say so. We're not doing a lot of big vegan cooking, but we have aspirations at least.

Peter O'Toole: Yeah, don't look

Emma Lundberg: as he's not everything you don't don't have to be all in to make an impact. Now, you know, it was quite good to, and I was talking to Stefan Turdin, too young recently on this. And yeah, he's he's he's certainly a big at the moment in minimizing his

Peter O'Toole: which involve going to less conferences in his case.

Emma Lundberg: That's a hard one to give up, because that's your network, your influence spreading the word as well. It's.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, but I think you have. We've we've now learned how to do virtual meetings also, and maybe I think it's. It's our responsibility to choose which meetings we go to carefully and not travel as much, and maybe make more out of the travels when we do travel and travel by train and other means as well.

Emma Lundberg: Ah, in the Us. But Europe works works well there, so I I think it's. Ah like the climate change is a more important matter and more urgent power.

Peter O'Toole: It's like changing tack we talked about. In fact, I have one more image, because this will dovetail nice to me. I

Peter O'Toole: Ah,

Peter O'Toole: I am looking for an in which is completely gone off my screen.

Peter O'Toole: You sent me a picture of a Judeenum that has vanished.

Emma Lundberg: Ah,

Emma Lundberg: you want me to show it.

Peter O'Toole: Yes, please

Emma Lundberg: let me see. I think I have it here.

Emma Lundberg: Oh, I can't share my screen. Sorry.

Peter O'Toole: Ah take it! Take a

Peter O'Toole: so. All the images, all that data rich part, and you created the online game and so forth. I would say you to your bioengineering biochemistry,

Peter O'Toole: interpret intracellular markers.

Peter O'Toole: But the other half of your team is very much more along. The Ai computational side of things

Peter O'Toole: is that in your skill set

Peter O'Toole: is that the team that you've built to address the questions that you want addressing.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, Yeah. So that's that's

Emma Lundberg: definitely more. The team that I built, I would say It's some. I mean, everyone in my team is better at what they do than I am right. I i'm not building the Ai models. I'm not coding, but I can understand advantages and different disadvantages for different approaches. And why? To use this model and not this model, and think about the potential of what I could do and kind of keep keep track of the field So I'm: I'm still learning there. But the actual coding is

Peter O'Toole: so how I I've been doing to interviews recently. And yeah, you know what skills you're looking for in a person, and you know when you interview them. If they genuinely have those skills or not,

Emma Lundberg: if it's not one of your top skills. How do you know when you're recruiting this team that they are genuinely? Have those? Yeah. Yeah. So, for example, for me. C. Coding is easy. You can do code reviews right. You can ask someone else in the team to look at

Emma Lundberg: code that they've written. And with Github. That's pretty easy to do that, so I usually

Emma Lundberg: I do trust my gut feeling a bit a lot when I recruit, but i'm also quite structured about the work, because I know that it's It's easy to carry bias with you, right, and I often ask someone else in my team to also interview and and come in with

Emma Lundberg: to particularly probing areas where I feel like I'm. Not really sure that this person is a good fit either for the team or scientifically, or to try to do it. I think if there's a high risk, if i'm the only one interviewing someone that it will be by it somehow, so I try to make use of it.

Peter O'Toole: Can I ask this? I'm going to ask this question.

Peter O'Toole: Which team do you prefer the wet lab team?

Emma Lundberg: Oh, no, you cannot ask that question.

Emma Lundberg: Nice, try, though. And then there's also Don't. Forget the important people that are kind of well versed in both. They might not be that,

Emma Lundberg: like developing this new architecture, they might not do it for the Ai models, but they can train Ai models, and they can still generate big data data sets and analyze it. So there's also very important, I would say, component to teams like that. That would be the kind of multilingual people that are right in between

Emma Lundberg: It's It's it.

Peter O'Toole: Yeah, My Phd students at the moment is a mathematician. We got it for the computational analysis side. But Actually, we got to doing the we work. I think no understanding the problem to the data,

Peter O'Toole: an understanding of what controls the data, what can go wrong, what can modify it is, It is really important. Actually,

Emma Lundberg: it's. It's important to understand the limitations of the data. If you want to build with good models, right, and we're working a lot with both models to better. It's paper coming out this week and on a model for a single cell and classification of patterns and single cells. And then we're working a lot with synthetic image generation. And and towards this goal of building this integrated cell human settlement

course we need

Emma Lundberg: people with training in biophysical restraints, for example, on on models. And and that's not my area of expertise a bit, but trying to keep the big big picture there, and then realizing also that everyone the West Lab people, they know exactly what it's artifacts, what's not artifacts, what is possible to ask, What questions Can I ask from this data set? What can I not

Emma Lundberg: uh evaluate in this data set Because

Emma Lundberg: limitations? I think it's very important to you know. Make the teams talk to each other,

Peter O'Toole: do you? Uh, do you? I?

Peter O'Toole: I can see this is one way traffic which is possibly unfair.

Peter O'Toole: But do you get the computational team to do any microscopy at all, even if it's just for a couple of days or a course on microscopy, just to give them some sort of grounding or some fundamental understanding of it, to start.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, so far, and not everyone here at Stanford. But I live. It's not up and running yet, but in Sweden I think everyone has done some across to me. Yes, and what we also force everyone to do in my team might not be the most fun thing to do, but for every release of the sell. At last we have to curate the day down. Some who have come with a new that update, for example, that might change things, and it's not.

Emma Lundberg: It's not super fun work, but it gives us a great understanding of what we're doing, and if we split that work on on everyone, it's like a day or two. So things like that. Everyone in my lab will have to come out with as well.


Peter O'Toole: so. Where? Where do you see yourself going?

Emma Lundberg: I don't know. I'm. I I think, definitely towards more computation

Emma Lundberg: and maybe higher resolution as well or dynamic time-lapse imaging. So we we have, we're exploring different directions more high parametric measurements more modeling in silico, more mapping different data sets to a common common framework or a shaped space, or something like that, so

Emma Lundberg: definitely in that direction and the whole integrated cell. But beyond that I don't know.

Peter O'Toole: Yeah, with this, with the spatial Omics side developing, That's a really furious pace. And I guess a new cosmic system that there's that Cyclo, the maxima. Oh, Gosh! I'm going to lose those in, as we're not going to even try, and

Peter O'Toole: that must be quite an exciting area for some of your applications, as well especially, maybe again goes through

Peter O'Toole: the the employer's type. Approach to deliver for the type of approach to the chipsitometry type. Approach the cosmics type. Approach where you get that subcellular information. So

Emma Lundberg: yeah, exactly. So we've been working quite a lot with some of these instruments, and I think what's a

Emma Lundberg: Our questions are slightly different than the the kind of early questions which often has been like. Where are the immune cells? How what kind of niches do we find here with these immune cells, and and that's interesting. But we're more interested in what's the different cellular states? What do the organelles look like in the different cells? For example, in a tissue context. So basically understanding

Emma Lundberg: selling self-form shape and states in C two and building assays to do that. So i'm very interested in it, and it will also be very interesting with Ah, in C to sequencing technologies, but subcellular resolution to try to, because there's many open questions relating to

Emma Lundberg: if the Rna location also encodes somehow where the printing will be localized. So I think we'll learn a lot by being able to generate multiomics data sets there as well.

Emma Lundberg: It's definitely a fun field, and it's, and it's great that there's a critical mass now engaging in spatialomics. So I think that's really pushing the field forward.

Peter O'Toole: I'm hoping this is not the case. I don't think it will be the case. But do you feel as though, that you're in competition with others. Or do you feel as you just you were part of a bigger team internationally with everyone who's in this area?

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, I think, for the subcellular protein mapping. Maybe we're not in that

Emma Lundberg: high competition, the multiplex imaging. Surely you can see it as competition. But I also think it's nice with Ah, with a critical mass in a field. It makes it easier to to publish. It makes it easier. There's better conferences, because there's more people interested in the topic, for example. But of course I would love to see more people interested in in

Emma Lundberg: protein multi-localization, and actually not just saying that this cell has these genes expressed, but also looking at. Where are the proteins? And what's the different States? So I think that, like

Emma Lundberg: understanding these dynamic states, I think we need to to target proteins to do that better and not our Nes. And I think they're the feel that it still has a bit to go.

Emma Lundberg: It's coming.

Emma Lundberg: Okay? So no, i'm not. I'm. Not I'm. Not

Emma Lundberg: I. I think competition is good.

Peter O'Toole: Okay,

Peter O'Toole: some quick via questions. Then.

Peter O'Toole: Okay, Pc. Or Mac.

Emma Lundberg: Well, I do have a Mac. I don't know in theory, maybe. Pc: but I do have a Mac.

Peter O'Toole: Okay uh Mcdonald's or Burger King

Emma Lundberg: um here in Stanford. I almost don't know yet, but we are enjoying all the the Mexican food so far because we don't have a lot of that in Sweden.

Peter O'Toole: Copy your tea cattle.

Emma Lundberg: I'm a big coffee drinker,

Peter O'Toole: espresso and Mary car no filter

Emma Lundberg: um so strong coffee. The American coffee is very weak to me as a Swede. We drink a lot of coffee. We're doing strong coffee, I would say. Strong black coffee with milk in it.

Peter O'Toole: Thank you.

Peter O'Toole: Be of a wine.

Emma Lundberg: It depends on the weather

Emma Lundberg: and the setting. This line is nice, but a full beer is great when it's warm out.

Emma Lundberg: Okay. Red wine or white wine, red line

and chocolate or cheese.

Emma Lundberg: She's

Peter O'Toole: early bird or night out.

Emma Lundberg: Oh, i'm a night, not i'm a a late bird, but with the time zone changes. Now i'm up early every morning, and it's not really my element, but I can do it


Peter O'Toole: Us or Sweden.

Emma Lundberg: I know Sweden is will always be my heart. But right now i'm in the Us. So

Emma Lundberg: I I guess as soon as both places will fit in my heart.

Emma Lundberg: Computational t or wet lab team. Haha! A nice try.

Peter O'Toole: Oh,

Emma Lundberg: they would keep asking me this, you know.

Emma Lundberg: Book book on Tv.

Emma Lundberg: Um,

Emma Lundberg: I think Tv, but books are good, but

Emma Lundberg: I don't know. I like pods also.

Emma Lundberg: Okay. So what do you listen to? Then

Emma Lundberg: I I listen to music, and then sometimes I listen to different like Swedish chit chat odds. I've been listening to a part about the legal system in Sweden recently. That's been very interesting.

Peter O'Toole: Okay,

Emma Lundberg: what sort of It's good When you go to the gym to have something like that.

Peter O'Toole: Yeah. And and you're not listening to the microscopes. You know this is utterly wrong, you know. You should be listening to my

Emma Lundberg: I should, I should. I just discovered this morning that I could find it on spotify, so i'll listen to it on my daily dog box. I promise

Emma Lundberg: there's lots, lots and lots of

Emma Lundberg: cool people in there talking, so I I think it's a I've a person that you listen to it.

Peter O'Toole: You have to get a lab to tweet out which one you listen to.

Emma Lundberg: What your when you read a book, What is your job? Favorite genre A book is it fictional, non-fictional. What sort of

Emma Lundberg: it's more um I would say it's it's fiction but more on the sorry i'm lacking the English words to describe it more on the like life, living life in different ways, and that kind of emotional thing.

But I I like books that are

Emma Lundberg: also thought provoking it, and different. So I tend to. To.

Emma Lundberg: It depends a little bit, And then I read a lot of just regular like, you know. Books like that, because it's just completely. You can disconnect your brain, and you don't have to think much about it, and my mom reads a lot of it. Looks like that. So I get.

Peter O'Toole: Hey? You said, you. You like to read books where you did us think too much and just light into it. So Tv, what is your light entertainment on Tv. I sometimes Tv vice. What is the worst Tv that you watch for?

Emma Lundberg: Yeah. So you know it Tv. I think it's nice of that, you know, when you watch it serious and you can disconnect your brain. Recently we've We've had a hard time to find. We're serious. So we recently we watched all of Seinfeld, actually.

Emma Lundberg: And that's kind of a nice brain relaxation

Emma Lundberg: that's for you to catch up on, if you only just done. Yeah, Yeah. So I think we've done over the past year. Probably all of it.

Peter O'Toole: What's your favorite film?

Peter O'Toole: You're not allowed to say, avatar. You've got an avatar. That's just not fair.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah. Yeah. No. Um. I'm sorry I can. I can't think of one now. All right, Star Wars or Star Trek. What's your preference? I'm gonna have to do a tally. See how he said. Star Wars and I said, Star Trek can be quite interesting. Do you have a favorite Christmas bill?

Emma Lundberg: I like the nightmare before Christmas.

Emma Lundberg: It's not really a Christmas.

Peter O'Toole: And the

Emma Lundberg: yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah,

Emma Lundberg: yeah, yeah, exactly. It's not really a Christmas film. But otherwise I watched a very nice Christmas series, a Norwegian Christmas series a couple of years back, that I've actually re-watched this last Christmas as well. That was just so heartwarming and very aligned with how Christmas is celebrated there.

Peter O'Toole: Okay? And what about your F? What sort of music you said? You listen to music when you're doing stuff. What sort of music do you like listening to?

Emma Lundberg: I listen to a a lot of different music? I listen to, for example, first aid Kit Swedish a lot of Swedish music, I would say, Um, I recently booked concert tickets to go see Sankabold in in San Francisco later this year. So it's It's a bit all over the place.

Peter O'Toole: Okay,

Peter O'Toole: there's no harm in being all over the place, and it's, and you have any pet pet Hates habits that people do, or things that niggle you at home or at work.

Peter O'Toole: Okay, Do you have any bad habits yourself?

Emma Lundberg: Absolutely.

Emma Lundberg: I I always sing in the car which my daughters hate when I when i'm also driving their friends to swim practice. And I I forget about it. So they're super embarrassed about that. Just be the parents.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, that's just being a parent. That's true. Other bad habits. Well, I I tend to to eat a lot of

Emma Lundberg: sweets when the kids have gone to bed. That's maybe not the best habit.

Emma Lundberg: And now they've just heard that if they listen to this they know you're going to have done it so they can't.

Emma Lundberg: Exactly. So they They're not. They're not going to listen to them across the kids,

Peter O'Toole: not to the older. Okay. So moving back into work. Thanks for those your team,

Emma Lundberg: I I I'll teach you a bit. I hope you will get a better. I I I didn't resize the picture, because this is obviously scaling down. So this is your team, and he's quite nice to see your team. How many Phds have any postdocs? Yes, it's a great team. Can you see they're They're just lovely. They're happy, and nine of them are moving with me to Stanford, which is amazing. And i'm so grateful for that, because that means that they will help me to build a lab. The culture will come along.

Emma Lundberg: It's about, I would say, equal parts, slightly more graduate students than than um like more Phds than Postdocs. But then I also have several staff scientists that's been around for a long time, so it's a quite senior group from that perspective, and I guess the the

Emma Lundberg: advantage working in a big big project with long-term funding like the human pretty not last, is that you can can have staff scientists in your team that work for a long time. So so from that perspective it's a really great team

Emma Lundberg: it's quite well-balanced, I would say, with that scientist, Post-docs, Phd. Students, technicians,

Emma Lundberg: computational wetland people

Peter O'Toole: to get mine going across it. It's It's a huge number it's it's a big change for them, obviously to to be moving over now. But you're right. I think they will form a a good network, and I hopefully. They can also

Emma Lundberg: integrate into the environment and not become a club. How you go to manage that with them To make sure they don't,

Emma Lundberg: I mix and socialize outside the man.

Emma Lundberg: Yeah, that that's a very, very good question. And I I actually think it will sort itself out, because, as it turned out,

Emma Lundberg: the first person arrived in April, the next one in July the next. But first in January, April, July. Now one is arriving today. I'm going to her up later today, and then we have one in December, and then one in January. So they're all like coming with a couple of months in between. So I think that will definitely help, but they will all have to

Emma Lundberg: form their own networks, and all of them are also coming here because they want to integrate with the environment here, so i'm sure they they will do that.

Peter O'Toole: The The team that are left over there. How often do you plan to go back?

Emma Lundberg: They're not left over there. I don't know

Emma Lundberg: they they are. They chose chose to stay because it's a really great place to be, and it's also very fun place in terms of spatial omics at the moment, giving the other technologies that are being developed at the time of babysitting. So they're

Emma Lundberg: I will be there. I spent the summer in Sweden, and I will spend. I spent summer in Sweden, and then maybe one prick

Emma Lundberg: that I have one trip this fall, for example, and probably one in the spring. But i'm not sure. So something like that.

Emma Lundberg: But there, there is a lot of senior staff scientists left in Sweden, and they're basically running it. I'm not. I'm not. They think they need me, but they don't

Peter O'Toole: It's a very

Peter O'Toole: But, as you said, with zoom and everything else, now

Emma Lundberg: it's not like you're not there. No, no, no, it's. I think we managed with with the Covid. Also we've learned how to to manage remote work, and it's, of course, frustrating to find the mutual leading times, I think, but otherwise

Emma Lundberg: it can be a benefit Also, if you want to write a paper, and it's kind of nice. You can send it off, and when you get back in the morning someone else has worked on it for nine hours, and so sometimes it can also be a benefit,

Emma Lundberg: and you can split. You can split. You can team teamwork in different ways. I I have a night out, postdoc. We used to have a night out, Postdoc. And yeah, I could grant, like you of the day. Drop it off with him at ten o'clock at night. At o'clock in the morning it was back on the desk with these additions, and you just carried on

Emma Lundberg: Exactly.

Emma Lundberg: And then the entire team is actually coming here for last week of October. So the entire team is coming here. We're going to have a week full of just inspirational science and boot meetings, together with other groups at Stanford, and then the Phd students are staying a couple of weeks longer.


Peter O'Toole: You

Peter O'Toole: think I want to work in your lab.

Peter O'Toole: We are up to the hour, and I still have questions I needed to ask you. But we are out of time. Um, because you you were involved in different courses and education as well. So I was talking to Florie, and recently talking about his interactions with you, supporting different course and events, but the whole, especially for the data science side

Emma Lundberg: erez Agmoni, that whole community and network, which is, I will say, not very competitive with each other. I think they're really supportive with each other. I was going to ask you about that, but you know what we might just have to do. Another

Emma Lundberg: community is amazing If you're thinking about going into to that field, and you know, for your Phd. Or anyone out there listening. It's a really nice collaborative field, and it's really amazing to work in it, and everyone is building off of each other's solutions and not competing with each other. So it's a really great field.

Emma Lundberg: But, um, Yeah, it's, I think maybe because it's a newer field that that isn't ingrained that competitiveness is not so ingrained, and the the collaboration side rather than the competition side.

Peter O'Toole: And I think maybe the acknowledgments are recognized differently.

Emma Lundberg: So people have contributed to the the the software. The app we get, the the code that's come out. So it's not all about getting the latest science, publication, and so forth.

Emma Lundberg: No, and that's important. Discussions about how to also build career tracks for the people that for the developers that might not have the scientific ah aims in the same way. So that's also for a different podcast. But there's hopefully things will change in the field there as well, so that we can also

Emma Lundberg: chief great developers in Academia,

Peter O'Toole: and I think we'll be talking again soon. I hope as we move into the future. Emma, thank you so much for joining me today. Everyone who's watched or listened. It is worth watching for some of the pictures, but I hope you've enjoyed it. Please don't get other sites in science work since Lucy Collinson and some of the other podcasts,

Peter O'Toole: and I wish you all the luck with bringing your lab over getting the two sides balanced and managing that split base with the time differences, and I really look forward to next developments

Emma Lundberg: that ever. Yeah, if you

Emma Lundberg: thank you so much,

Emma Lundberg: it's a pleasure.

Peter O'Toole: Thanks, Guys. Emma. Thank you very much. That was great.

Creators and Guests

Emma Lundberg (Stanford and KTH Royal Institute of Technology)