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About Laboratory Of Bioinformatics And Protein Engineering

Our group is involved in theoretical and experimental research on nucleic acids and proteins. The current focus is on RNA sequence-structure-function relationships (in particular 3D modeling), RNA-protein complexes, and enzymes acting on RNA.
We study the rules that govern the sequence-structure-function relationships in proteins and nucleic acids and use the acquired knowledge to predict structures and functions for uncharacterized gene products, to alter the known structures and functions of proteins and RNAs and to engineer molecules with new properties.
Our key strength is in the integration of various types of theoretical and experimental analyses. We develop and use computer programs for modeling of protein three-dimensional structures based on heterogenous, low-resolution, noisy and ambivalent experimental data. We are also involved in genome-scale phylogenetic analyses, with the focus on identification of proteins that belong to particular families. Subsequently, we characterize experimentally the function of the most interesting new genes/proteins identified by bioinformatics. We also use theoretical predictions to guide protein engineering, using rational and random approaches. Our ultimate goal is to identify complete sets of enzymes involved in particular metabolic pathways (e.g. RNA modification, DNA repair) and to design proteins with new properties, in particular enzymes with new useful functions, which have not been observed in the nature.
We are well-equipped with respect to both theoretical and experimental analyses. Our lab offers excellent environment for training of young researchers in both bioinformatics and molecular biology/biochemistry of protein-nucleic acid interactions.

More Good Science

Projects funded by research grants:

  • FNP (TEAM): Modeling of dynamic interactions between RNA and small molecules and its practical applications (POIR.04.04.00-00-3CF0/16-00); 3 449 541 PLN; 2017-2020. PI: J.M.Bujnicki, vice-PI: F.Stefaniak
  • NCN (MAESTRO): Integrative modeling and structure determination of macromolecular complexes comprising RNA and proteins (2017/26/A/NZ1/01083); 3 500 000 PLN; 2018-2023. PI: J.M.Bujnicki, vice-PI: N.Chandran
  • NCN (OPUS): Development of new methods for designing RNA molecules that fold into desired spatial structures and their use for development of new functional RNAs and for prediction of noncoding RNAs in transcriptome sequences (2017/25/B/NZ2/01294); 1 494 250 PLN; 2018-2021. PI: J.M.Bujnicki, vice-PI: T.Wirecki
  • NCN (OPUS): A coarse-grained method for RNA 3D structure modeling, with emphasis on noncanonical base pairing. (2016/23/B/ST6/03433); 741 250 PLN; 2017-2020. PI: M.Boniecki
  • NCN (MINIATURA): Photoswitchable ligands for riboswitches (2018/02/X/NZ1/01468); 21670 PLN 2018-2019. PI: F.Stefaniak

Research funded by statutory funds of IIMCB:

  • Development and maintenance of databases for RNA modifications and structural biology of RNA
  • Development and maintenance of analytical methods and web servers for structural bioinformatics of RNA.
  • Experimental determination of structures and mechanisms of action for RNA molecules, their complexes, and for enzymes acting on RNA.