22 June 2012

Bioluminescent biotechnologies in Siberia are in safe hands

Nobel laureate has started working at SFU

RIA "Siberia"Osamu Shimomura arrived in Krasnoyarsk at the invitation of the Siberian Federal University as the head of the scientific project "Conducting large-scale multidisciplinary research in the direction of Bioluminescent biotechnologies".

Recall that the grant of the same name was won in September 2011 by the Siberian Federal University in an open competition held by the Russian Government. The federal grant is allocated for state support of scientific research carried out under the guidance of leading scientists in Russian universities. 517 leading scientists participated in the grant competition, 39 applications were supported, including the SFU application. The achievements of SFU scientists on this topic have become the most weighty argument in the distribution of government grants. The grant is allocated for 3 years, its size is 110 million rubles.

Sergey Verkhovets , Vice - Rector for Science and International Cooperation of SFU , noted: "The invitation of a Japanese scientist to SFU is not accidental. The scientific interests of the university and Osamu Shimomura are close. The scientific school of Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences, scientific director of the Institute of Fundamental Biology and Biotechnology of SibFU Joseph Gitelzon is working on the project "Bioluminescent technologies", and the specialty of the Japanese scientist is chemistry."

During the implementation of the project, it is expected to obtain both fundamental results, for example, the identification of common patterns and differences in the molecular mechanisms of the functioning of coelenterazine-dependent bioluminescent proteins or obtaining new data on the molecular and cellular organization and properties of bioluminescent systems of luminous higher fungi and annelids, and applied - the creation of portable laboratories for environmental monitoring and the formation of lecture and practical courses.

The first visit of the Nobel laureate to SFU will last until the end of June. During this time, the outstanding scientist will hold a series of scientific seminars on bioluminescent technologies, take part in the discussion of the scientific program of work for 2012-2013, get acquainted with the laboratory base of the project, visit the Center for Collective Use.

For reference:
For several decades, the world has been studying a variety of luminous organisms, in particular, those that are rich in the world ocean: jellyfish, fish, squid, crustaceans, etc. The famous green fluorescent protein (GFP) was first obtained by Osamu Shimomura from sea jellyfish (Aquorea). Its bright green glow occurs when irradiated with light. This glow helps to visualize different life processes, which has revolutionized medical diagnostics.
(For more information about bioluminescence in general and GFP in particular, see the article "They are alive and glowing" – VM.)

SIBFU scientists have a fundamental task to understand the molecular mechanisms of the luminescence of living organisms associated with the work of enzymes in the cell-luciferases and fluorescent proteins. The study of luminescence is, in addition to purely scientific, and of purely practical interest.

Thus, proteins isolated from jellyfish flash brightly with a bluish light when calcium chloride is added. This very simple system can be used for analysis in medicine, in the diagnosis of a number of diseases – infectious, hormonal, for gene diagnostics, etc. The development of specialists of the Siberian Federal University in this direction allows you to replace radioisotope methods, as well as expensive imported diagnostic kits.

Portal "Eternal youth" http://vechnayamolodost.ru22.06.2012

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