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The "NanoCell" doctoral programme focuses on introducing the next generation of scientists to exciting single-molecule research and its applications in biology and medicine. It was initiated by the FWF-funded graduate school of the same name (2014 to 2023), which was, in turn, the successor to the "Molecular Bioanalytics" graduate school, one of the first FWF-funded graduate schools in Austria. 

The focus on single-molecule research has a long tradition at Johannes Kepler University Linz. This is reflected, for example, in the immense interest from all over the world in the annual "Winter Workshop on Single Molecules". This event has been one of the most important scientific meetings in the field of single molecules for more than 25 years. Significant advances in single-molecule recognition force spectroscopy, cell force spectroscopy, recognition imaging and single-molecule dye tracing have originated in Linz. Similarly, NanoCell faculty members have been at the forefront of the development of stimulated emission depletion microscopy, i.e. microscopy techniques that overcome the diffraction limit, or have been involved in the development of exciting fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) applications for the functional study of reconstituted membrane proteins.

The research of the PhD students in NanoCell aims to bridge the gap between the processes of molecular recognition and structural rearrangements on the one hand, and membrane transport and cell mechanics on the other. Functional and structural studies are carried out on both model and native systems, from single proteins in artificial (reconstituted) environments to subcellular and cellular samples.

NanoCell students have access to advanced single-molecule techniques such as high-speed atomic force microscopy (HS-AFM), two-photon STED, single dye tracing and dual-focus fluorescence correlation spectroscopy.