ERC Advanced Grant

2016-03-24

Hurra, we got it.

Advanced Investigator Grants are meant to support the most successful and promising European scientists and to encourage them to tackle ambitious, interdisciplinary projects. The grants are worth 2.5 Million Euros each and are paid out over a period of five years. We will use this money to address the role of the pArg protein mark in protein quality control and stress response, as stated in our application abstract:

Cellular proteins are prone to misfolding and aggregation, particularly under harsh environmental conditions. To counteract this danger, all organisms from bacteria to humans evolved sophisticated protein quality control networks. The mechanisms employed in them tend to represent some of the most exciting biochemistry occurring in living cells. In Gram-positive bacteria, the key factors combating protein damage include a specialized protein kinase phosphorylating arginine residues (McsB), the central housekeeping protease (ClpP), as well as a AAA chaperone targeting aggregated proteins (ClpC). We find this quality-control system, organized around a distinct protein phospho mark (phosphoarginine, pArg), a fascinating model to investigate novel principles of dealing with proteotoxic stress. Using an integrative approach, we will delineate the precise role of protein arginine phosphorylation in the bacterial stress response.