Infectious diseases are still one of the main causes of mortality of man. A clear limitation of studying human pathogens is the lack of a relevant infection model. This is particularly true for human pathogens for which no animal reservoir is known. Since simple cell lines, cell culture systems or animals are highly artificial models for human pathogens we aim to develop and apply novel human 3D infection models based on engineered human tissues within the framework of the graduate school GRK 2157: 3DInfect.
The research focus of the research training group GRK 2243 is the elucidation of biochemical and pathogenic mechanisms underlying diseases that are linked to the ubiquitin system. The research program is aimed at generating a thorough mechanistic understanding of disease-relevant enzymes of the ubiquitin system, which will guide the subsequent molecular and cellular analysis of the pathogenic consequences of their malfunction.
Sphingolipids constitue a major components of eukaryotic cell membranes. Therefore sphingolipids are also involved in infection processes influencing trapping, entry, compartmentalization and intracellular routing of pathogens themselves, but also lateral or vertical segregation of receptors and associated signaling complexes, or recruitment or maturation of organelles. In addition, certain bioactive sphingolipids can regulate signaling pathways by themselves or act as bacteriocidals. This effectively regulates cell autonomous, innate and adaptive immune responses. Within FOR 2123 many of these aspects are addressed.
Staphylococcus aureus is a dangerous pathogen, a leading cause of bacterial infection in hospitals and in the community world-wide. The micro-organism is a prominent example of the crisis of antibiotic resistance, one of the major threats to health in the 21st century. The overarching objective of the CRC-TRR 34 is a better understanding of the infection biology of S. aureus.