Doctoral Researchers

 
Institute/Dep.
Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology - Hans-Knöll-Institute-
Dept. Biomolecular Chemistry
PhD Project:

Cultivation Strategies for the Characterization of Secondary Metabolite Production in Anaerobic Bacteria

 
 
Tauber, James

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ChemBioSys Student

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Institute/Dep.
Friedrich Schiller University Jena
Institute of Pharmacy
Chair of Pharmaceutical Biology II
PhD Project:

Role and regulation of secondary metabolites by basidiomycetes during inter-organismal interactions

 
 
Thürich, Johannes

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ChemBioSys Student

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Institute/Dep.
Friedrich Schiller University Jena
Matthias Schleiden Institute
Dept. of Plant Physiology
PhD Project:

Isolation and Characterization of Novel Biomolecules from Fungi Establishing Mutualistic or Pathogenic Interactions with Roots of Arabidopsis and Nicotiana Species

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Abstract: The goal of my project is to study the interaction of Arabidopsis thaliana and Nicotiana attenuata with root-colonizing fungi. These fungi, i.e. Piriformospora indica, Mortierella...
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... hyalina, Alternaria brassicae and Verticillium dahliae, exudate compounds which induce rapid cytosolic calcium elevation in roots. (Fig 1.) The Ca2+ signal is important for the downstream responses of plants such as gene activation or release of antifungal compounds. I will identify and characterize these unknown biomolecules and the in planta counterparts. Calcium measurement, next generation sequencing, mass spectrometry, gene expression studies and bio assays will help me to get new insights into the plant-microbial signaling.
 
 
Timme, Sandra

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FungiNet Student

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Institute/Dep.
Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology - Hans-Knöll-Institute-
Research Group Applied Systems Biology
PhD Project:

Agent-based modeling of the spatio-temporal interaction between immune cells and human-pathogenic fungi

 
 
Töpfer, Natalie

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JSMC Fellow

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Institute/Dep.
Center of Sepsis Control and Care (CSCC)
PhD Project:

Characterization of pathogen-leukocyte interaction by means of Raman spectroscopy

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Abstract: Worldwide a third of all sepsis patients die from their condition. This systemic reaction can occur after infection with pathogens for example after surgery. In this uncontrolled...
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... hyper-inflammatory response leukocytes play an important role. Especially neutrophils, which are the most abundant representative of the immune system, are able to engulf pathogens and oppose them via phagocytosis. The pathogen is trapped intracellularly where it can be digested by granular enzymes and antimicrobial peptides. In a few cases, neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) are produced to bind the pathogens with fibers composed of DNA and globular proteins. Macrophages and their progenitor cells, monocytes, are also able to phagocytize microbes and - like neutrophils - are important producers of inflammatory cytokines.
In the course of this project the infection mechanisms of the opportunistic pathogenic fungi Candida albicans an Aspergillus fumigatus will be investigated. Both pathogens are known to have polymorph phenotypes and cause localized, but also systemic infections. Systemic candidiasis and invasive aspergillosis are prominent in immunocompromised patients, like patients undergoing organ or stem cell transplantation, chemotherapy or AIDS. Raman spectroscopy will be used to study the interaction between neutrophils / monocytes and C. albicans/A. fumigatus. Leukocytes and pathogens will be visualized with false color Raman images before and after infection. The molecular information of the Raman spectra will be extracted
and compared to biochemical information gained through biological methods. Furthermore, this project could give insight into the characteristic differences between the pathogens that are to be phagocytized and which are not.