The International Research Training Group GRK 1384 is formed by scientists from the Justus-Liebig University (Giessen), the Philipps-University (Marburg), The Russian Academy of Science and the M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University. Associated partners include scientists from the Institute of Biotechnology (Vilnius) and the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (Warsaw). Speaker on the German side is Prof. Peter Friedhoff, on the Russian side Prof. Tatiana Oretskaya.
The IRTG started in fall 2006 for 4,5 years and was prolonged to be funded for another 4,5 years. See press release (in German).
The scientists were selected by the strength of their expertise in the
following areas: molecular and cellular biology, bioinformatics and
computational biology, enzymology, bioorganic chemistry, biophysical
chemistry, and structural biology.
The International Research Training Group focuses on the training of
doctoral students in the biochemistry of enzymes and multienzyme
complexes acting on nucleic acids.
These enzymes are crucial for the copying, maintenance, repair, and
expression of genetic information. Some of them are essential tools for
gene technology, and a thorough understanding of these systems will
certainly enable better use to be made of them. Malfunction of several
of these enzymes is causally related to human diseases, in particular
some forms of cancer; again, understanding their mechanism of action
may eventually lead to new therapeutic concepts.
Our study and research programme will not only consider proteins as
individual structures but also as components of larger networks or
With the array of interdisciplinary expertise present among the partners, we will make substantial progress in
- understanding target site location, recognition and initiation of
catalysis by enzymes replicating, restricting, modifying and repairing
uncovering structural and functional implications of the cooperation
of subunits in multienzyme complexes involved in RNA synthesis,
processing, translation and degradation - issues of central importance
for all enzymes acting on nucleic acids.
The principal goal of our International Research Training Group is to
attract dedicated doctoral students who are interested in learning how
contemporary interdisciplinary approaches can be used to address
important and timely questions about a subject of central importance in
biochemistry and molecular biology, namely the enzymology of enzymes
acting on nucleic acids.
Our network will offer them a unique opportunity to pursue their
projects in an environment of research excellence provided by the
experienced partners who have similar research interests and
complementary expertise. It provides them with experience of working
across disciplines which will enable them to appreciate the synergism
that underlies productive interdisciplinary interactions. The goals of
the network will be achieved by a programme of in- lab, out-of-lab and
We believe that young researchers trained in our network will greatly
benefit from our integrated interdisciplinary approach and will be well
placed for contemporary academic and industrial research.