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February 01 - February 28

7 entries found

What it tak..
Start date: February 01
04:00 pm 05:00 pm

Description: 

Hauke Drechsler (Postdoc): "What it takes to be a MAP"

Abstract

The eukaryotic microtubule cytoskeleton is key to vital cellular processes like intracellular transport, cell migration or mitosis. During these, altogether, highly dynamic events, the shape and functionality of the microtubule cytoskeleton have to be constantly adjusted. In addition to molecular motors, this task is carried out by a multitude of microtubule associated proteins (MAPs). MAPs are a structurally and functionally diverse class of proteins that structurally support microtubule structures, regulate the intrinsic dynamicity of microtubules or govern microtubule-dependent transport. Surprisingly, the capacity to bind microtubules is not associated with a particular protein structure or sequence, raising the question what (minimal) properties define a microtubule-binding domain or a MAP. To answer this question we have chosen a bottom-up approach to reconstitute basic MAP-like behaviour using simple synthetic peptides. We identified a multivalent, positively charged peptide that shows complex MAP-like behaviour on dynamic microtubules as it is capable to bundle microtubules, modify their dynamics and mediate force coupling to depolymerising microtubules. Based on this artificial MAP, we aim to develop an easy manipulatable modular system that yields tailored MAPs with a defined functional spectrum for basic research on MAPs and biotechnical applications.

Robert Münch (Predoc): "Overcoming limitations of retinal regeneration in mammals: Deciphering key players in glial reactivation and proliferation"

Abstract

Vision mediates the highest percentage of our perception but is on the other hand affected in over the half of all neurological impaired patients. Some types of lower vertebrates can regenerate neuronal cell loss in the retina: The Müller glia (MG) reactivate upon retinal damage, reprogram into a stem-cell like state and produce cell progeny that can dedifferentiate into new neurons to restore vision loss. Unfortunately, this process does not naturally occur in mammals, but a limited regeneration response can be experimentally stimulated in rodents. Thus, the underlying mechanisms and limitations are not yet solved. In this talk, we will discuss recent findings in our well established mouse retina regeneration assay: We could show that activation of EGFR and its downstream targets is necessary for MG proliferation. Further, correlative studies of neuronal cell death and MG proliferation revealed a retinal damage dependence and suggested that additional factors might be required to induce MG proliferation. Thus, we discovered a new marker to monitor MG reactivation and new ways to more effectively stimulate MG proliferation. Finally, we started to transfer some of our findings in the ex vivo assay to mice in vivo, which revealed new avenues and roadblocks for retina regeneration research.

Intramuscul..
Start date: February 12
11:00 am 12:00 pm

Scalable na..
Start date: February 12
05:00 pm 06:00 pm

Description: 

Abstract

Silicon nanotechnology is omnipresent in the devices we use every day. The scale and capabilities of the underlying manufacturing platform holds an enormous potential for application domains beyond computing. Particularly in healthcare, we believe that the impact of such customized nanotechnologies will be profound, in health and disease, and across therapeutic areas. I will show how silicon nanotechnology is already exploited to perform measurements, from the genome to the brain, at a scale and speed that were unfathomable just a few years ago. I will then provide a future perspective covering areas such as non-invasive monitoring of key biomarkers, point-of-need diagnostics, and organ-on-chip.

Dr. Peumans holds a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Princeton University, and a bachelor's and master's degree in engineering from the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. Prior to joining imec, Dr. Peumans was a professor of electrical engineering at Stanford University where his work focused on large area electronics, solar energy conversion and biomedical electronics. He is the recipient of an NSF CAREER award and a Belgian-American Educational Foundation honorary fellowship. He currently leads imec's life science technologies program.

Correlated ..
Start date: February 15
04:00 pm 05:00 pm

Linking phe..
Start date: February 21
11:00 am 12:00 pm

Description: 

Abstract
The main mission of my group is to address a fundamental question in genetics and evolutionary biology: What is the genomic basis of phenotypic differences between species? By focusing explicitly on differences between species rather than on differences within a species, our work aims at revealing the genomic differences underlying macroevolutionary change, which is an important aspect to understand how nature's phenotypic diversity evolved.
To address this question, we combine the development of computational methods to detect evolutionary changes in functional genomic regions, with large-scale comparative genomics to discover associations between genomic and phenotypic changes, and experiments in vitro, in cells and in model organisms. Applying these approaches to mammalian and reptile genomes has led to many novel insights into the genomic basis underlying morphological, physiological and metabolic adaptations in mammals and reptiles.

Papers
* Hecker N, Sharma V, Hiller M. Convergent gene losses illuminate metabolic and physiological changes in herbivores and carnivores. PNAS, doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1818504116, 2019

* Roscito JG, Sameith K, Parra G, Langer BE, Petzold A, Moebius C, Bickle M, Rodrigues MT, Hiller M. Phenotype loss is associated with widespread divergence of the gene regulatory landscape in evolution. Nature Communications, 9:4737, 2018

* Lee JH, Lewis KM, Moural TW, Kirilenko B, Bogdanova B, Prange G, Koessl M, Huggenberger S, Kang C, and Hiller M. Molecular parallelism in fast-twitch muscle proteins in echolocating mammals. Science Adv, 4(9), eaat9660, 2018

* Sharma V, Lehmann T, Stuckas H, Funke L, and Hiller M. Loss of RXFP2 and INSL3 genes in Afrotheria shows that testicular descent is the ancestral condition in placental mammals. PLoS Biology 16(6), e2005293, 2018

* Sharma V, Hecker N, Roscito JG, Foerster L, Langer BE, and Hiller M. A genomics approach reveals insights into the importance of gene losses for mammalian adaptations. Nature Communications, 9(1), 1215, 2018

Microresona..
Start date: February 26
05:00 pm 06:00 pm

Visualizing..
Start date: February 28
11:00 am 12:00 pm

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