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CSSB: Newsletter 18

CSSB is 5 years old! On 29 June, we celebrated our 5th anniversary with a BBQ for CSSB staff.

The last five years have been busy ones and the start of 2022 was no exception. CSSB groups developed new projects, received awards and fellowships and published some exciting papers. We held our first CSSB All Retreat at the beginning of June and we're happy to have an opportunity to grow together as an institute.

We are looking forward to welcoming several speakers to CSSB in September. Please take a look in the Upcoming CSSB Events section for more information.

Wishing everyone a fun and relaxing summer!


IMAGE: Alena Sternberg

Boris Krichel receives MSCA Global Postdoctoral Fellowship

Boris Krichel, a Postdoctoral researcher in the Uetrecht Group (Uni Siegen, LIV), has been granted a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions Global Postdoctoral Fellowship. This three-and-a-half-year, international fellowship will enable Boris to investigate AMPK, a protein responsible for regulating cellular energy metabolism, using cutting-edge mass spectrometry approaches.

Hamburg iGEM Team 2022 at CSSB

Kolbe Group Hosts iGEM Students

iGEM stands for international genetically engineered machines and is a non-profit organization that organizes a worldwide competition for students in the field of synthetic biology. This year's team at the Universität Hamburg aims to create a new and faster system for detection of antibiotic resistant genes in bacteria using phages and split ribozymes. Several iGEM students are currently working at CSSB in Michael Kolbe's laboratory.

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CSSB All Retreat

From 2-3 June, CSSB held its first all staff retreat in Lübeck. The retreat featured a science slam, poster session and several team building activities. Overall, there retreat provided a great opportunity to meet new people and for CSSB to bond as an institute.

Tim Gilberger and Danny Wilson at CSSB.

Gilberger Group Hosts Humboldt Fellow

CSSB's Gilberger group (BNITM/ UHH) welcomed Dr. Danny Wilson to Hamburg at the beginning of May. Danny is a Humboldt Fellow who will continue his research into the fundamental questions of the unique biology of the parasite that can be exploited to develop new drugs to defeat malaria.

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IMAGE: Tina Mavric

CSSB involved in DFG approved Research Training Group at UKE

The UKE is to receive a new Research Training Group to promote young scientists. The German Research Foundation (DFG) has approved Research Training Group 2771 "Humans and Microbes" and will fund it with approximately six million euros over the next five years. In addition to the UKE, other Hamburg research institutions including CSSB are also involved; joint research is being conducted into bacterial, viral and parasitic infectious agents.

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IMAGE: Marta Meyer/ DESY

Charlotte Uetrecht is the 2022 recipient of the Mattauch-Herzog Award

On 27 April 2022, CSSB group leader Charlotte Uetrecht was granted the Mattauch-Herzog Award for her development of mass spectrometry methods and technologies. The award is presented by the German Mass Spectrometry Society (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Massenspektrometrie, DGMS) and considered one of the most prestigious scientific awards in analytical science.

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Catalin giving a talk at the Dutch Society of Medical Microbiology (NVMM) and the Royal Dutch Society of Microbiology (KNVM) annual Scientific Spring Meeting.

CSSB Postdoc, Catalin Bunduc, receives Van Leeuwenhoek Award

On April 5, Catalin Bunduc was granted the Van Leeuwenhoek Award which is given to young, Postdocs in microbiology for the best publication as first author. Catalin received the award for his paper Structure and dynamics of a mycobacterial type VII secretion system published in the renowned scientific journal Nature.

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IMAGE: Thomas Kierspel

SAXFELS project receives RAC funding

CSSB Group leader Charlotte Uetrecht (Uni Siegen, HPI and DESY) and collaborators, Erik Marklund from Uppsala University and Carl Caleman from Uppsala University/DESY (CFEL) received funding from the Röntgen-Angström Cluster (RAC), a Swedish-German research collaboration, for their Small Angle X-ray Free Electron Laser Scattering (SAXFELS) project. This four-year project, with a combined funding of 1.75 million EUR, will develop a new method for examining macromolecular structures by integrating and developing powerful techniques for gas-phase sample manipulation with X-ray diffraction imaging.

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IMAGE: Pietro Scaturro

Development of a test kit for the diagnosis of respiratory viruses

Under the coordination of CSSB group leader Prof. Charlotte Uetrecht and LIV group leader Dr. Pietro Scaturro, the project Mass Spectrometric Rapid Diagnostics of Respiratory Viruses in Saliva and Gargle Solution (VirMScan) began on March 1, 2022. The project's aim is to develop a mass spectrometry-based test kit for decentralized diagnostics of respiratory viruses and to establish an early warning system for new virus variants.

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CSSB Seminars

Upcoming CSSB Seminars:

September 8: Frank DiMaio
September 15: Derek Lowe
September 19: Mike Hagen
September 29: Colin Crump
September 30: Thomas Hoenen and Allison Groseth
October 6: Julia Mahamid

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IMAGE: Tina Mavric

Hamburg Life Science Seminar Series

This new seminar series, hosted by EMBL and CSSB, looks to strengthen Hamburg's growing life science community and provide our PhD students and postdoctoral researchers with exciting new networking opportunities.

September 2: Yves Gaudin
September 16: Ben Engel
October 28: Nassos Typas

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IMAGE: Agnieszka Obarska-Kosinska/EMBL and MPI of Biophysics

Puzzling out the Structure of a Molecular Giant

Combining AlphaFold2 with experimental and computational techniques has helped scientists figure out the human nuclear pore complex's architecture in greater detail than ever before. What's the NPC's structure? How are its proteins glued together? How does it attach to the nuclear membrane? These and other questions have now been answered by the Kosinski Group at EMBL Hamburg and CSSB, the Beck and Hummer Labs at the Max Planck Institute of Biophysics, and collaborators.

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IMAGE: Janine-Denise Kopicki

New Method Reveals Mechanisms of the Immune System

The Uetrecht group (Uni Siegen/ LIV), at CSSB, and collaborators including the CSSB Protein Characterisation Facility have developed the basis for a new method to predict the immune systems' response to individual peptides. The research study, published in Communications Biology, demonstrates how a novel high-throughput screen could help identify specific peptides that bind to Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecules.

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IMAGE: Enrico Caragliano

Human Cytomegalovirus: Phase-separated compartments support replication

Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) replicates its DNA genome in specialized replication compartments, whose exact formation was thus far unclear. A research team from the Leibniz Institute for Experimental Virology (LIV) and CSSB has now shown that the formation of phase-separated compartments around viral genomes is necessary to recruit the viral DNA polymerase.

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An Interview with Nishika Sabharwal

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An Interview with Maria Garcia Garcia

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IMAGE: HPI Franziska Ahnert

An Interview with Charlotte Uetrecht

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Contact Information

Centre for Structural Systems Biology (CSSB)
c/o DESY, Building 15
Notkestr. 85
22607 Hamburg
E-mail: info@cssb-hamburg.de

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