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DK NanoCell - NanoAnalytics of Cellular Systems (FWF)

Project Start: 1 March 2014

Nano-Analytics of Cellular Systems - from molecular dynamics, recognition and organizati
on to membrane transport and motility

The scientific goal of this graduate program is to gain insight into the dynamics and the molecular picture of how cellular molecules are recognized on the membrane surface, of how they are organized into molecular assemblies, and about how cellular processes such as membrane transport and motility are initiated and performed. Functional and structural investigations are carried out on both model and native systems, starting with single proteins in an artificial (reconstituted) environment and ending with sub-cellular and cellular samples. The major aim is to span the gap between the processes of molecular recognition and structural rearrangements on one side, and membrane transport and cell motility on the other side. As it focuses on frontier research in life- and cellular nano-science, the program will be applicable to many scientific and technological fields related to biophysics, cell biology, nanotechnology, applied physics, theoretical physics, bioorganic and inorganic chemistry, structural and molecular biology, mathematical modelling, and scientific computing, giving the Ph.D. students lifelong flexibility for continued professional growth.

Well established nano-analytical and nano-scopic techniques with a resolution ranging from sub-nanometer to micrometer cover the entire scale, from single molecules to molecular assemblies and living cells. Novel cellular biology and data analysis approaches complement it and provide a solid basis for the education and the training of the students within the NanoCell program. These methodologies will consequently be exploited and connected to each other.

This highly interdisciplinary graduate research program involves faculty from six Institutes at Johannes Kepler University Linz (JKU) and three additional research centers. These include: The Institutes of Biophysics, Applied Physics, Organic Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry, and Theoretical Physics from Johannes Kepler University Linz (JKU), the Institute of Science and Technology (IST), the Institute of Applied Physics from the Vienna University of Technology (TUW), and the Research Group “Computational Mathematics for Direct Field Problems” at the Johann Radon Institute for Computational and Applied Mathematics (RICAM) from the Austrian Academy of Sciences.