Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

About € 4.5 Million Funding for Group Leaders at the MPIB

10.08.2012
The European Research Council (ERC) encourages excellent basic research in Europe in order to promote visionary projects and open up new interdisciplinary science areas.
Three young group leaders of the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) in Martinsried near Munich succeeded in obtaining one of the coveted “ERC Starting Grants”. Spread over a period of five years, Esben Lorentzen, Andreas Pichlmair and Frank Schnorrer will receive € 1.5 million each for their research projects. Due to their scientific achievements until now they were the winners against several thousand competitors.

Delivery Service for Cilia
Tiny hair-like structures (cilia) are found on the surface of most cells in the body, where they serve to move the cell, process external signals and coordinate the correct arrangement of the inner organs during development of the organism. To do this, cilia have to be supplied with the right building blocks. This is taken over by a complex transport system which is called intraflagellar transport (IFT). Defects in the IFT can lead to severe physical and mental disorders. Together with his research group “Structural Biology of Cilia”, Esben Lorentzen investigates how the system works. Using X-ray crystallography, the scientists could already decipher the structure of a subunit of the IFT complex, and others shall follow. These results could help avoid mistakes in the composition of the cilia and thus prevent the development of diseases.

Targeting Viruses
When viruses enter our body across our mucosa, the immune system reacts promptly. Immune cells recognize the pathogens via signal molecules on the cell’s surface and initiate the appropriate maneuver. These molecular sensors for viruses are the research focus of Andreas Pichlmair and his research group “Innate Immunity”. If the viruses are successful and enter the cell, the pathogens take command and make the cellular metabolism work for them. It is still not known in detail how viruses alter the genetic activity and the protein production of the infected cells. To identify modified proteins and elucidate their importance for viral replication, Andreas Pichlmair and his colleagues utilize mass spectrometry among other methods.

Flying Power Packs
The fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster possesses different kinds of muscles and therefore can perform various behaviors such as crawling, running and, of course, flying. With the help of targeted gene modifications, the scientists in Frank Schnorrer’s research group “Muscle Dynamics” investigate how muscles of the fruit fly develop at the right place in the body and how the contractile machinery within the muscles is assembled properly. By performing more than 25,000 flight tests, the scientists identified the essential switch gene “Spalt”, which enables Drosophila to fly. It initiates the development of the special flight muscles, which can contract 200 times per second. ”Spalt” and its related genes are not only important for the development of the flight muscles in insects, but probably also for the proper functioning of human heart muscles. In the future, Frank Schnorrer wants to understand how flight muscles achieve their special properties through the influence of “Spalt”.

At the beginning of this year, the European Research Council already honored an MPIB-scientist, when Director Elena Conti received the “ERC Advanced Grant”.

Contact
Dr. Esben Lorentzen
Structural Biology of Cilia
Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Am Klopferspitz 18
82152 Martinsried
E-Mail: lorentze@biochem.mpg.de
www.biochem.mpg.de/lorentzen

Dr. Andreas Pichlmair
Innate Immunity
Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Am Klopferspitz 18
82152 Martinsried
E-Mail: apichl@biochem.mpg.de
www.biochem.mpg.de/pichlmair
Dr. Frank Schnorrer
Muscle Dynamics
Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Am Klopferspitz 18
82152 Martinsried
E-Mail: schnorrer@biochem.mpg.de
www.biochem.mpg.de/schnorrer

Anja Konschak
Public Relations
Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Am Klopferspitz 18
82152 Martinsried
Tel. +49 89 8578-2824
E-Mail: konschak@biochem.mpg.de
www.biochem.mpg.de

Anja Konschak | Max-Planck-Institut
Further information:
http://www.biochem.mpg.de
http://erc.europa.eu/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Could this protein protect people against coronary artery disease?
17.11.2017 | University of North Carolina Health Care

nachricht Microbial resident enables beetles to feed on a leafy diet
17.11.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für chemische Ökologie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA detects solar flare pulses at Sun and Earth

17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures

17.11.2017 | Health and Medicine

The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change

17.11.2017 | Studies and Analyses

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>