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How influenza virus causes bacterial superinfection

Viruses can predispose the host to bacterial superinfection, and secondary pneumonia is considered to play a major role in the morbidity of seasonal as well as pandemic influenza. Despite the significant clinical and socioeconomic impact, the molecular mechanisms of how influenza virus causes superinfection have been poorly understood. Scientists from Andreas Bergthaler´s Group at CeMM now succeeded in finding a new molecular mechanism, which may explain why influenza virus infections increase the susceptibility to bacterial pneumonia. Their discovery of a novel crosstalk between the antiviral molecule interferon and the enzyme Setdb2, which…

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Human Proteome Day

As a follow-up to the publications on the initial draft of the human proteome that appeared in Nature in May this year, Bernhard Küster and Akhilesh Pandey were invited to CeMM to present their key research findings. As part of their presentations, the speakers described the broad range of applications of their research, such as the use of protein identification to aid forensic teams at crime scenes, or a large-scale malarial study in India. They also discussed the future of this research field, including the aim to produce a more refined map of the human proteome and also the development of proteogenomic centers to complement upcoming…

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Biallelic loss-of-function mutation in NIK causes a primary immunodeficiency with multifaceted aberrant lymphoid immunity

The team of Kaan Boztug, Principal Investigator at CeMM and Assistant Professor at the Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine of the Medical University of Vienna discovered the molecular origin of a new rare disease and succeeded in deciphering the essential role of the NFkB-inducing kinase (NIK) for an efficient immune response in humans. The findings have been published online, on November 19th, 2014, in the open access journal Nature Communications. 

Primary immunodeficiencies are inherited disorders resulting in malfunction of the immune system. The identification of the molecular defects underlying these disorders is crucial…

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Max L. Birnstiel 2007 in Vienna with his scientific son and grandson Meinrad Busslinger and Giulio Superti-Furga

Obituary Max L. Birnstiel

It is with great sadness that we learn of the decease of Prof. Dr. h.c. mult. Max L. Birnstiel, of Wollerau, Switzerland. Max Birnstiel was the founding director of the Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) in Vienna and can be held responsible for kicking off the renaissance of the life sciences in Austria in the last 25 years. As a mentor of the CeMM director Giulio Superti-Furga, who in the late eighties had followed him as a PhD student together with his PhD supervisor Meinrad Busslinger, from Zurich to Vienna, Max Birnstiel provided important advice for the making and leadership of CeMM. Max Birnstiel will long remain a towering figure…

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10 Year Anniversary of the MedUni Vienna

It is our great pleasure to congratulate the Medical University of Vienna on their 10 year anniversary! The Medical University of Vienna is one of our key research partners and plays a major role in the education and scientific development of CeMM’s PhD students, and postdoctoral fellows. We truly value the strong collaborative relationship with our neighbours, and we would like to thank the rectorate, our collaborators and the administrative staff of the Medical University of Vienna for their cooperation. Several members of CeMM Faculty are also affiliated with the Medical University and thus represent a successful “marriage” of ideas and…

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4th Vienna Next Generation Sequencing Symposium & Workshop at CeMM

The 4th Vienna Next Generation Sequencing Symposium & Workshop brought together over 150 current and future users of next generation sequencing technology. Six invited speakers described exciting applications of NGS technology in basic biology and in biomedical research. And the keynote speaker Bart Deplancke (École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, EPFL) presented a biologically interesting and methodologically advanced study on the massive-scale characterization of the genome regulatory code in Drosophila. The meeting was organized by Christoph Bock (Coordinator of the BSF Biomedical Sequencing Facility of CeMM and MedUni Vienna) and…

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Giulio Superti-Furga and Kilian Huber at CeMM Win GlaxoSmithKline’s European Discovery Fast Track Challenge to Investigate a New Anti-Cancer Drug Targeting MTH1

Giulio Superti-Furga, Scientific Director and Kilian Huber, Senior Postdoctoral Fellow at CeMM Research Center for Molecular Medicine of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, have been selected as winners of GlaxoSmithKline plc’s (GSK) 2014 European Discovery Fast Track Challenge, which is designed to accelerate the translation of academic research into novel therapies. CeMM will partner with scientists in GSK’s Discovery Partnerships with Academia (DPAc) and Molecular Discovery Research (MDR) teams to screen the target against GSK’s compound collection. Active compounds could then form the basis of full drug discovery programmes that may…

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CeMM Scientific Director Giulio Superti-Furga elected member of the Academia Europaea

CeMM Scientific Director Giulio Superti-Furga was recently elected member of the Academia Europaea – the Academy of Europe. The election followed a recommendation of the Academic Sections and a peer review by the Nominations Committee of the academy.

The Academia Europaea is a registered not-for-profit charity founded in 1988 as an international, nongovernmental association of eminent, individual scientists and scholars from across the continent of Europe who are experts and leaders in their own subject areas as recognized by their peers. Currently 3000 academy members span the full range of academic disciplines comprising the humanities,…

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Vienna-Munich collaboration identifies JAGN1 as a novel key regulator of neutrophil survival and function

Congenital immunodeficiencies comprise a group of disorders characterized by an abnormal immune system. The body’s ability to fight infections is impaired and infections can have life-threatening consequences for those affected. Analysis of patients with a disease characterized by an inherited lack of neutrophil granulocytes termed severe congenital neutropenia (SCN) may shed light on the delicate balance of factors controlling differentiation, maintenance, and decay of neutrophils. The team of CeMM Principal Investigator Kaan Boztug in collaboration with the group of Christoph Klein, Director of the Dr. Von Hauner Children’s Hospital Munich,…

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The solute carrier SLC35F2 enables YM155-mediated DNA damage toxicity

Genetic requirement for drug action is important to study as it may reveal mechanism of drug resistance, particularly in cancer, as well as generate ideas for better, safer and more personalized drugs. The laboratory of CeMM Director Giulio Superti-Furga used a genetic screen with human haploid cells, based on the work of Thijn Brummelkamp and his team (NKI and CeMM Adjunct PI), to identify the genes affecting the action of a poorly understood cancer drug under clinical evaluation. Surprisingly, only one gene turned out to lead to resistance, the uncharacterized member of the solute carrier SLC35F2. Further studies showed that whether this…

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