Welcome to the fascinating world of 'epigenetics', which our guest, the molecular geneticist Anne Ferguson-Smith, describes as 'genetics with knobs on'.
Anne, now Arthur Balfour Professor of Genetics and Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research at the University of Cambridge, tells Jim about her life and work. She's spent her professional life at the cutting edge: from a degree in a brand new field of Molecular Biology, to post-grad working on brand new genetic structures, through to a lifetime of discoveries and breakthroughs which have changed our understanding of the genome.
Yet she wasn't always destined to be a scientist. She says she was a 'bad student' for a lot of her early life, and believes that embracing failure is an essential part of being a working scientist.