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Archiv-Übersicht     Angebot Nr. 13205

Angebotsdatum: 21. Dezember 2018
Art der Stelle: Diplomarbeit
Fachgebiet: Chemie > Biochemie
Titel des Themas: Glycan-based cell-cell communication

Institut: Max Planck Institut für Kolloid- und Grenzflächenforschung
Dr. rer. nat. Christoph Rademacher
Am Mühlenberg 1
14476 Potsdam
Tel.:    Fax.:
Bundesland: Brandenburg
Homepage: http://www.mpikg.mpg.de/StructuralGlycobiology
E-Mail Kontakt: mail

Beschreibung: The “Structural Glycobiology” group at the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in Potsdam is looking for motivated and ambitious students for internships up to three months or Master Thesis work with a background in Biochemistry, Biology, Physics or related subjects.
Our motivation: A dense matrix of carbohydrate structures covers every living cell in every organism. This so-called glycocalyx evolved as a fundamental principle of life providing stability, cellular integrity and means for communication. It is not surprising to find altered glycosylation being a hallmark of cancer and metastasis. While our insights into the role of other biopolymers such as DNA and proteins has increased tremendously over the last decades, glycans are understudied. Proteins recognizing glycans are ubiquitously expressed in all forms of life.
The information encoded in glycans is decoded by glycan binding proteins, so called lectins. But these interactions are intrinsically non-specific: not a single glycan is recognized by only one lectin. Moreover, the glycosylation machinery is not setup to alter defined structures on defined sets of proteins. Consequently, changes in glycosylation always affect multiple newly synthesized glycoconjugates and results in the correlated expression of glycans on the cell surface. Taken together, low specificity and correlated exposure of glycans render redundancy an important emergent property of the glycocalyx.
Moreover, cellular microheterogeneity induces population “noise” in the extracellular sugar coat, which allows individual cells to perform random state switching and adoption to a changing environment even under constant extracellular input. This stochastic behavior results in the emergence of properties of a system that cannot be described by focusing on isolated components. Hence, noise and redundancy are emergent properties that provide the ability to adapt to changing environments. Both are general principles of life.
Our Approach: In the ERC-funded project GLYCONOISE, we are focusing on the role of redundancy and noise of this glycan-based communication channel. A simple cellular model system will be developed to understand how weak and redundant glycan-lectin interactions are decoded by a receiver cell as a defined message under the influence of noise. Data will be provided by single cell techniques such as flow cytometry and imaging and interpreted using state of the art methods from bioinformatics and physics.
Our research environment: Located 30 min outside of Berlin, the “Structural Glycobiology” group is embedded in the Department of Biomolecular Systems, with access to state-of-the-art research facilities. A comprehensive repertoire of instruments (700 MHz, 600 MHz, and 2x400 MHz NMR, SPR, ITC, 384well automated FACS (3 laser), qPCR, Leica Sp8 confocal microscope, STED microscope etc.) stands alongside with high-profile collaborators in a fruitful research spectrum covering synthetic organic chemistry, biochemistry, glycobiology, nanotechnology, immunology and biophysics.
Methoden: single cell techniques such as flow cytometry and imaging and state of the art methods from bioinformatics and physics.
Anfangsdatum: 21. Dezember 2018
Geschätzte Dauer: 3 to 6 month
Bezahlung: none
Papers: Aretz J. et al. J Am Chem Soc, 2018, just accepted.
Wamhoff EC. et al. BioRxiv 2018, pre-print.
Aretz J. et al. Angew Chem Int Ed Engl., 2017, 56, 1-6
Hanske J. et al. J Am Chem Soc, 2016, 136, 12176-86.