SFB 1177

Molecular and Functional Characterization of Selective Autophagy

Autophagy is a highly conserved catabolic process that serves as a quality control mechanism in cells by selectively removing damaged and superfluous organelles or other harmful cytosolic material, such as aggregated proteins or invaded bacteria. Under stress or energy restriction autophagy provides recycled building blocks for the synthesis of new cellular components. Three different types of autophagy can be distinguished: macroautophagy, microautophagy and chaperone-mediated autophagy. This SFB focuses on macroautophagy (hereafter referred to as autophagy), a multi-step cellular process by which cytosolic material is engulfed by a double-membrane, termed autophagosome after closure, which eventually fuses with a lysosome in order to eliminate its content. Autophagy plays a vital role in protecting against disease, but in recent years it became clear that the effect of autophagy is highly contextual. While it acts for instance as an anti-tumorigenic mechanism in healthy cells, cancer cells exploit the cytoprotective effect of autophagy to overcome stress conditions and nutrient limitation caused by rapid tumor growth. SFB 1177 aims at gaining a more detailed insight into the mechanistic details of autophagic pathways to better understand its role in disease development and eventually exploit this knowledge therapeutically.


Funded by DFG



Speaker: Prof. Dr. Ivan Dikic Ivan Dikic
IBC2 Uniklinik | BMLS, Goethe University
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Website of Prof. Ivan dikic

Vice-Speaker: Prof. Dr. Christian BehlChristian Behl
Universitätsmedizin der JGU Mainz
Send an Email to Christian BehlWebsite of Prof. Ivan dikic

Coordinator: Dr. Heide GenauHeide Genau
Phone: +49 69/6301-84832
Send an Email to Heide GenauWebsite of Prof. Ivan dikic

Activities and News

Christian Münch joins SFB 1177 as project leader

11th Jul 2018
Recently, the German Research Foundation (DFG) has approved Christian Münch’s supplementary proposal to study Mitophagy induction by the mitochondrial unfolded protein response within the framework of SFB 1177. Protein misfolding in mitochondria has been associated with numerous diseases, including neurodegeneration and cancer, and leads to activation of a mitochondrial stress response – the mitochondrial unfolded protein response (UPRmt). For the next two years, Christian Münch will address the role of mitophagy induction by the UPRmt to resolve mitochondrial protein folding defects.

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Stefan Knapp elected as EMBO member

14th May 2018
The European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) announces the list of 62 scientists who were elected as members in 2018. Amongst them is Prof. Stefan Knapp, project leader within SFB 1177, therewith joining "a group of more than 1800 of the best researchers in Europe and around the world“, as EMBO states.

EMBO press release Link
EMBO profile of Stefan Knapp Link

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