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An international team of researchers under Danish leadership is the first in the world to culture and purify an interferon that in due course could contribute to greater success in treating Hepatitis C. From left: Rune Hartmann, Ewa Terczynska-Dyla and Ole J. Hamming. (Photo: Lisbeth Heilesen)
The body produces the interferon IFN? during a viral infection. The family includes IFN?3 and, in some people, IFN?4. By studying how much intracellular and extracellular IFN?3 and IFN?4 exist, the Aarhus University research team discovered that the cells release much more IFN?3 than IFN?4. (Figure: Ole J. Hamming)

2013.11.12 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Protein with potential role in the fight against hepatitis C virus

An international team of researchers under Danish leadership is the first in the world to culture and purify an interferon (protein) called lambda 4 (IFNλ4) – a protein that behaves like Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. Paradoxically, it increases the risk of getting hepatitis C (HCV) and reduces the chances of being cured, but nevertheless has a…

Anne von Philipsborn and Mark Denham have been appointed group leaders at DANDRITE (Photos: private)

2013.11.12 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

DANDRITE appoints the first two research group leaders

DANDRITE has appointed Anne von Philipsborn and Mark Denham as Group Leaders. These appointments are the first two in a series of five group leaders to be employed at DANDRITE. Mark and Anne will start their research in December and January, respectively.

2013.11.11 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

The description of the sodium-potassium pump among the 10 best research results in 2013

In September, Poul Nissen's research group published the description of the sodium-potassium pump in Science. Videnskab.dk has now nominated these results to be among the 10 best research results in 2013.

There are 49 members of staff and PhD students at Aarhus University’s CARB basic research centre, 28 of whom come from abroad, representing 15 different countries. Front row (from left): Junyi Su (China), Dorthe Bødker Jensen, Mick Blaise (France), Maria Vinther, Estelle Lucette Marchal (France), Terry Mun (Singapore), Estrella Martinez (Spain), Kira Gysel (Switzerland), Fleur Dolman (Australia). Second row: Bjørn Erik Vind Koch, Svend Dam, Anna Malolepszy (Poland), Nadieh de Jonge (Netherlands), Sheena Ricafranca Rasmussen, Winnie Füchtbauer, Lene H. Madsen, Simona Radutoiu (Romania). Third row: Ei-ici Murakami (Japan), Rafal Zgadzaj (Poland), Anna Jurkiewicz (Poland), Mai-Britt Brøndum, Andrea Genre (Italy), Dennis Berg Holt, Niels Sandal, Zhe Yan (China), Carina Terney Pedersen, Marcin Nadzieja (Poland). Fourth row: Mette Hoffmann Asmussen, Nina Eberhardtsen Hansen, Linards Klavins (Latvia), Niraj Shah (India), Yasuyuki Kawaharada (Japan), Haojie Jin (China), Simon Kelly (New Zealand), Noor de Jong (Netherlands). Back row: Dugald Reid (Australia), Nikolaj Birkebæk Abel, Vikas Gupta (India), Christina Kalisch (Germany), Jens Stougaard, Stig Uggerhøj Andersen, Søren Thirup, Sebastian Kragh Kristensen (Photo: Lisbeth Heilesen)
International laboratory trainees spending a one-year period of practical training at the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics. Front row (from left): Ingrid Puusta (Estonia), Maria-Alexandra Vatasescu (Romania) and Martina Jadronova (Slovakia). Back row: Moussa Hassan (Denmark), Julia Poniewierska (Poland), Dörte Meyer (Germany) and Laboratory Coordinator Anni Christensen, who is the contact person for the trainees at the department. Absent in this photo is Linards Klavins (Latvia), but he can be seen in the group photo above (Photo: Jørgen Ploug)

2013.10.29 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Internationalisation with a vengeance

Aarhus University urges researchers and students to focus on international collaboration. This commitment is fully met by the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, as approximately 140 of the department’s more than 400 staff members and PhD students come from abroad – representing most of the world.

Scientists from Aarhus University have found a certain gene that affects nerve cell activity. Photo: Colourbox

2013.10.16 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

The pig, the fish and the jellyfish: Tracing nervous disorders in humans

Scientists are working across animal species in order to solve some of the riddles of human diseases.

The research team behind the new results from Aarhus University. Phd student Goran Bajic is explaining the significance of the new results to Professor Thomas Vorup-Jensen, Professor Gregers Rom Andersen, and Senior Scientist Laure Yatime
By using X-ray crystallography, the Aarhus scientists have revealed in detail how the CR3 receptor on our immune cells recognises the C3d molecule bound on the surface of e.g. pathogens (Figure: Goran Bajic)

2013.09.27 | Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Public / media

How cells in the immune system eliminate microorganisms and diseased tissue

Danish researchers have determined in atomic detail how an important mechanism in the immune system works. These results could form the basis for improved pharmaceuticals.

Professor Torben Heick Jensen, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, has been awarded an ERC Advanced Grant (Photo: Lisbeth Heilesen)

2013.09.27 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Torben Heick Jensen awarded ERC Advanced Grant

The European Research Council (ERC) has awarded an Advanced Grant to Professor Torben Heick Jensen to support his research into genome expression, stability and technology.

Barley and other kinds of grain can be used to produce environmentally friendly plastic (Photo: Janne Hansen)

2013.09.25 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Plastic fantastic from plants

Plants can be used as natural factories for the production of biofriendly plastics. Scientists from Aarhus University have launched a project where they will expand the diversity of products coming off the plant’s production line.

Figure: The structure of the sodium-potassium pump presented in a schematic cell membrane. The extracellular space is situated above and the intracellular space below the figure. The left-hand side of the figure shows the experimental reproduction of the pump’s structure in the sodium-bound state. The reproduction is based on x-ray crystallography. The blue web shows how atoms are situated in long chains of amino acids which make up the protein molecule that constitutes the pump. The central section of the figure is a schematic presentation of the structure in which the different colours represent the various movable parts of the pump. The approximate position of the three Na+ ions is indicated with small, yellow balls. To the right, the structure of the potassium-bound state is shown using the same colour codes and showing the two potassium ions as dark purple balls. The structural changes are evident. The structures correspond to two central steps in the pump’s functional cycle, which pumps three sodium ions out of the cell for every two potassium ions pumped in.
Maria Nyblom (Photo: private)
Pontus Gourdon (Photo: Lisbeth Heilesen)
Hanne Poulsen (Photo: Lisbeth Heilesen)

2013.09.19 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Crucial new insight into the secrets of Nobel Prize-winning pump

Jens Chr. Skou was awarded the Nobel Prize for his discovery of the sodium-potassium pump. Now, a team of researchers from Aarhus has completed the description of its structure. A result which is of vital importance for our understanding of the body's functions and essential for our understanding of illness and for the development of new medicines.

The digestibility of cereals can be improved by combining the right varieties with specific enzymes. Foto: Janne Hansen

2013.09.18 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Improving feed digestibility saves resources

The right combination of cereals and enzymes can improve feed digestibility and benefit the environment, animal health and the economy.

New international research network receives 11.5 million Euro to study epilepsy
Jørgen Kjems

2013.09.17 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

New international research network receives 11.5 million Euro to study epilepsy

Newly formed European-led consortium working towards new understanding and treatment breakthroughs for epilepsy receives 11.5 Million funding by European Union. Jørgen Kjems from the Department of Molecular Biology/iNANO is head of the research group from Aarhus participating in the consortium.

2013.09.10 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Hadi Esfandyari awarded prize for the best poster at an international conference

PhD student Hadi Esfandyari received the award for best poster in animal genetics at 64th Annual Meeting of EAAP of the European Association of Animal Science.

Joseph Lyons (left) receives The Young Investigator Award at Diamond Light Source

2013.09.05 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Joseph Lyons receives The Young Investigator Award at Diamond Light Source

Joseph Lyons receives the award in recognition of the work carried out during his PhD studies on the development of a lipid mediated crystallisation method and its application to membrane proteins, which involved extensive use of the I24 beamline at Diamond Light Source. In addition to the honour of winning the award, Joseph Lyons receives GBP500.

In collaboration with a Cambridge research group, the Danish researchers, Poul Nissen and Hanne Poulsen, from Aarhus University have revealed why up to 10 percent of the population have high blood pressure. Photo: Lisbeth Heilesen
All animal cells depend on the sodium/potassium ion pump, which ensures plenty of extracellular sodium and intracellular potassium. The big difference thus created in the ion concentrations can be utilised for a variety of vital processes, such as communication with other cells and the exchange of substances. A normal pump pumps three sodium ions out and two potassium ions in per cycle (left). In adrenal tumours, however, mutations modify the basic mechanism so that the pump allows ions (protons or sodium ions) to flow into the cell (right). This upsets both the ion balance and the gradients across the membrane in the adrenal cortex cell, which it perceives as a signal to produce aldosterone. The overproduction of aldosterone leads to hypertension. Up to 10% of patients with hypertension have such tumours, but these can be removed by surgery, which can cure the patient. Figure: Hanne Poulsen

2013.08.09 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

Small adrenal tumours cause high blood pressure

In collaboration with a Cambridge research group, Danish researchers from the PUMPkin research centre at Aarhus University have revealed why up to 10 per cent of the population has high blood pressure.

Human gene expression initiates in both directions on the DNA strand from the beginning of most genes. Researchers have revealed that our DNA in the direction of the gene is depleted of ’pA sites’, which function as transcriptional stop signals, while the DNA in the opposite direction is enriched for these stop signals. Furthermore, the study disclosed that such ’pA sites’, when positioned near the position in the DNA where transcription initiated, link to rapid degradation of the produced RNA molecules. Figure: Ebbe Sloth Andersen, MBG

2013.07.14 | Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics

How human gene promoters become directional

An international research team has disclosed how cellular gene transcription and RNA degradation processes collaborate to achieve a directional output from human genes.

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