Changes in daylength are a well-established annual timing cue for animal behavior and physiology. An international collaboration of scientists led by Kristin Tessmar-Raible at the Max Perutz Labs now shows that, in addition to daylength, marine bristle worms sense seasonal intensity changes of UVA/deep violet light to adjust the levels of important neurohormones and their behavior. The study is published in Nature Ecology and Evolution.
Autophagy, from the Greek for ‘self-eating’, is an essential process that isolates and recycles cellular components under conditions of stress or when resources are limited. Cargoes such as misfolded proteins or damaged organelles are captured in a double membrane-bound compartment called the autophagosome and targeted for degradation. A fundamental question concerns precisely how these “garbage bags” form in the cell. Scientists led by Sascha Martens from the Max Perutz Labs, a joint venture of the University of Vienna and the Medical University of Vienna, have now reconstructed the first steps in the formation of autophagosomes. They show that tiny vesicles loaded with the protein Atg9 act as the seed from which the autophagosome emerges. The study is published in Science.
Scientists led by Javier Martinez from the Max Perutz Labs, a joint venture of the Medical University of Vienna and the University of Vienna, have identified a unique chemical reaction at the end of RNA molecules for the first time in human cells. This reaction was previously only observed in bacteria and viruses. Tracing its source among thousands of proteins, they discovered that an unexpected culprit, an enzyme called ANGEL2, executes this reaction. ANGEL2 may play a key role in regulating the response to cellular stress, and possibly in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative and metabolic diseases. The study is published in “Science”.
Advances in neuroscience research and microscopy: a collaborative project driven by researchers of the Max Perutz Labs Vienna, a joint venture of the University of Vienna and the Medical University of Vienna, and the TU Wien (Vienna) allows researchers to look deep into organs and nervous systems of animals, ranging from squids and worms to fish and salamanders.
The Vienna Covid-19 Diagnostics Initiative (VCDI) is a collaborative effort involving 20 scientific institutions across Vienna. The initiative has repurposed existing infrastructure, resources, and expertise to build a new diagnostics pipeline for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. The initiative freely disseminates its know-how, operating procedures and latest developments. The VCDI is funded by the COVID-19 Rapid Response Call of the Vienna Science and Technology Fund (WWTF).
A marvel of complexity, the nucleus is the command center of the cell – harboring information, codes and controlled access. But different from man-made command centers, the nuclear interior looks chaotic to the eye of a scientist. Chromosomes, the carriers of genetic information, float amidst a sea of water, proteins, nucleic acids and other molecules, all engaged in a myriad of simultaneous reactions. These reactions have one major goal: to turn genes on and off at the right time and place. This process is called gene regulation and makes a brain cell look and act different from a muscle cell or a liver cell.
Infections by human fungal pathogens cause about 1.5 million deaths each year – interfering with iron utilization in the fungus promises new therapeutic approaches.
Multidrug resistance (MDR) is a fundamentally important medical phenomenon that undermines anticancer and anti-infective therapy of cancer or infectious diseases. Researchers of the Max Perutz Labs, a joint venture by the Medical University of Vienna and the University of Vienna, have delineated the molecular mechanism, whereby the human ABCG2 drug transporter drives MDR. The results suggest new therapeutic strategies to prevent MDR by inhibiting the ABCG2 transporter.
Mitosis is the process by which the genetic information encoded on chromosomes is equally distributed to two daughter cells, a fundamental feature of all life on earth. Scientists led by Alexander Dammermann at the Max Perutz Labs, a joint venture of the University of Vienna and the Medical University of Vienna, now examine how centrioles contribute to this process. The findings, published in “Developmental Cell”, help to elucidate the function of these tiny cellular structures in mitosis.
Everyone owning a house knows it: to stay like new it needs cleaning and mending. Similarly cells constantly renovate and get rid of unwanted material in a process called autophagy in order to replace itwith new parts. This ensures that the organism stays healthy over the years. Like a house renovation, different contractors are employed with repairs and getting rid of waste, and perfect communication is required between them. An international team of scientists from Berlin and Berkeley led by Sascha Martens from the Max F. Perutz Laboratories, a joint venture University of Vienna and the Medical University of Vienna now describe how this communication between two important factors takes place and thus ensures that autophagy correctly works in the cell.
Cardiovascular Diseases (CVD) lead to atherosclerosis and heart failure and are prevalent age-related illnesses in humans. In a new study, published in the renowned journal JCI, scientists from Roland Foisner’s group at the Max F. Perutz Laboratories of the University of Vienna and the Medical University of Vienna, together with scientists from the Ludwig Boltzmann Cluster for Cardiovascular Research at the Center for Biomedical Research, Medical University of Vienna and from the BOKU, Vienna describe the molecular mechanism behind CVD in the premature aging disease Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS).
The University of Vienna and Medical University of Vienna are extending their successful collaboration with Max F. Perutz Laboratories. Rectors Heinz W. Engl from the University of Vienna and Markus Müller from MedUni Vienna signed an agreement to extend the Joint Venture until 2025.