Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Functional genomics and biotechnology for health

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
1.05.00  Natural sciences and mathematics  Biochemistry and molecular biology   
4.06.00  Biotechnical sciences  Biotechnology   
3.04.00  Medical sciences  Oncology   

Code Science Field
B000  Biomedical sciences   
P320  Natural sciences and mathematics  Nucleic acids, protein synthesis 
B220  Biomedical sciences  Genetics, cytogenetics 
B200  Biomedical sciences  Cytology, oncology, cancerology 
T490  Technological sciences  Biotechnology 
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (53)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  16104  PhD Apolonija Bedina Zavec  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  151 
2.  21407  PhD Sabina Berne  Biotechnology  Researcher  2005 - 2008  165 
3.  18325  PhD Simon Caserman  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2006 - 2008  106 
4.  06457  PhD Aleksandra Comino  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2005  61 
5.  28452  PhD Juan Antonio Contreras  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2007 - 2008  58 
6.  17572  PhD Marko Cotman  Veterinarian medicine  Researcher  2004 - 2008  116 
7.  05088  PhD Manica Černe  Veterinarian medicine  Researcher  2004  106 
8.  18622  PhD Nataša Debeljak  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  241 
9.  28559  PhD Urška Dermol  Chemical engineering  Junior researcher  2008  17 
10.  25530  PhD Petra Draškovič  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Junior researcher  2005 - 2008  59 
11.  18992  PhD Martina Fink  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  124 
12.  20381  PhD Irena Fonda  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2005  44 
13.  20347  PhD Klementina Fon Tacer  Metabolic and hormonal disorders  Researcher  2004 - 2008  125 
14.  06108  PhD Vladimira Gaberc-Porekar  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  220 
15.  18284  PhD Katja Galeša  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2007 - 2008  39 
16.  19323  MSc Barbara Gazvoda  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Junior researcher  2005 - 2007  16 
17.  18529  Dubravka Germ    Technical associate  2004 - 2008 
18.  22406  PhD Maša Goršič Krisper  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Junior researcher  2004 - 2008  21 
19.  26055  PhD Gorazd Hribar  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Junior researcher  2007 - 2008  49 
20.  21395  PhD Petra Hudler  Medical sciences  Researcher  2004 - 2008  150 
21.  17275  Ana Marija Jesenko    Technical associate  2004 - 2008 
22.  21352  PhD Peter Juvan  Human reproduction  Researcher  2008  163 
23.  22679  PhD Maja Kenig  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004  21 
24.  24562  Helena Klavžar  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Technical associate  2005 - 2008 
25.  06135  PhD Radovan Komel  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Head  2004 - 2008  1,053 
26.  21507  PhD Branka Korošec  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2007 - 2008  61 
27.  29321  PhD Rok Košir  Cardiovascular system  Junior researcher  2008  90 
28.  00385  PhD Nada Kraševec  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  210 
29.  23686  PhD Mateja Kusterle  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004 
30.  18355  PhD Drago Kuzman  Physics  Researcher  2004  64 
31.  23473  PhD Ljerka Lah  Biotechnology  Junior researcher  2004 - 2008  60 
32.  17276  Jelka Lenarčič    Technical associate  2004 - 2008 
33.  21241  PhD Ana Lenassi Zupan  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  16 
34.  18210  Nataša Lileg-Tašler    Technical associate  2004 - 2007 
35.  14305  PhD Mirjana Liović  Metabolic and hormonal disorders  Researcher  2004 - 2008  147 
36.  12768  PhD Andrej Marušič  Psychiatry  Researcher  2004  882 
37.  21493  PhD Maja Matis  Neurobiology  Researcher  2007  32 
38.  01494  PhD Viktor Menart  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004 - 2007  162 
39.  22581  PhD Mateja Novak Štagoj  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  20 
40.  22580  PhD Špela Peternel  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Junior researcher  2004 - 2008  42 
41.  12048  PhD Marjetka Podobnik  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  314 
42.  28382  PhD Uršula Prosenc Zmrzljak  Public health (occupational safety)  Junior researcher  2007 - 2008  82 
43.  15286  PhD Galina Pungerčič  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2007  37 
44.  20345  PhD Uroš Rajčević  Oncology  Junior researcher  2004 - 2005  117 
45.  22459  PhD Tadeja Režen  Neurobiology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  232 
46.  06013  PhD Damjana Rozman  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2008  880 
47.  24289  PhD Matej Seliškar  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2005 - 2008  25 
48.  13412  PhD Lana Strmecki  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2005  36 
49.  28347  PhD Klemen Španinger  Oncology  Junior researcher  2007 - 2008  62 
50.  21684  Tea Tomšič    Technical associate  2004 - 2008 
51.  27742  PhD Alja Videtič Paska  Medical sciences  Researcher  2008  214 
52.  26574  PhD Matjaž Vogelsang  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Junior researcher  2006 - 2008  41 
53.  16114  PhD Katja Vouk  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2005  80 
Organisations (3)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0104  National Institute of Chemistry  Ljubljana  5051592000  21,496 
2.  0381  University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Medicine  Ljubljana  1627066  46,192 
3.  0406  University of Ljubljana, Veterinary Faculty  Ljubljana  1627139  10,689 
Significance for science
The genetic backround of disease has been an established fact for years. In the previous research we have identified, by searching the genome, mutations and polymorphisms in candidate genes, which were subsequently associated to a disease phenotype. In simpler, monogenic diseases, we discerned mechanisms of their initiation and development and thus provided a basis for molecular genetic diagnostics. With approfounded knowledge, we have come to understand that there is no such thing as a »one-gene« disease. Even diseases caused by a mutation in a single gene are influenced by numerous other factors, triggered by the difference in expression of other genes. More complex still is the research of multi-genic and multi-factorial diseases – which often represent major challenges for modern medicine and society. These diseases include cancer, heart and coronary diseases, diabetes, degenerative diseases of the central nervous system and mental illnesses. Functional genomics is a new, post-genomic science, which perceives the cell and its biochemical and pathophysiological phenomena not singularly, but as an integrated system. As such it strives to study simultanously interconnected events and thus discover molecular switches and understand complex biochemical mechanisms of cellular pathology. Based on these findings, it aims to create innovative diagnostic tools, develop discreetly targeted drugs with minimized side-effects, and enable systemic drug trials at the cellular level and the level of the organism. This approach is of course applicable in other fields, such as agronomy, forestry, environmental protection etc. Our research program was comprised of two sections: (a) basic research (at the molecular level) of cell biology phenomena, involved in some of the most medically and socially challenging pathological processes, and (b) aplicative research for the design and develompent of novel drugs for combating modern diseases. Both sections are interconnected, since new findings from the first section, paramount to understanding the mechanisms of disease at the molecular level and introducing novel diagnostic tools, form a basis for a rational approach in the second section. Research was conducted through 12 working packages/sections reflecting by titles methodological and ideological association or "philosophy" of the programme: Genomics and genetic / molecular-biology basis of diseases; Genomics of complex diseases – psychiatric disorders and their genetic background; Functional genomics and cholesterol homeostasis; Study of gene and protein interactions during cell division; Functional genomics of tissue regeneration; Study of mechanisms in cell signaling; Study of cytoskeleton and its role in cell signaling and development of disease phenotype; Functional genomics and molecular biology of oncogenesis; Systems effects of the supportive erythropoetin therapy in cancer patients; Development of expression systems for biotechnological production of recombinant proteins; Molecular biology of fungal cytochromes P450 for the development of antifungal drugs; Design, modeling and biosynthesis of recombinant pharmaceuticals. In the period 2004-08 the programme group published 85 peer-reviewed papers (cumulative IF = 263, average IF = 3.09), comprising 13 papers with IF)5. We also published 10 international patents and 5 patent applications.
Significance for the country
This program group arose by uniting two previous programs which have in the past significantly contributed to the socio-economic development in Slovenia. Research group at the Medical Faculty (MCMB) was among the first to initiate gene technology, and introduced molecular biology/genetic approaches into Slovenian medical research and practice. Together with its clinical partners it introduced gene diagnostic techniques and forensic DNA testing, and also educated/trained leading reaserchers of Slovenian diagnostic laboratories. Research group at the National Institute of Chemistry (L11), as a mixed group of researchers from the Institute and the pharmaceutical company Lek d.d., contributed to important (even world-wide) biotechnological production of pharmaceuticals (e.g. ergot-alkaloids, clavulanic acid). Together with researchers from Lek, the group has introduced technology of rational design and production of biopharmaceuticals, which lead to the first »Slovenian« recombinant drugs. The integration of both groups can be considered as an added value, manifesting in building links between experimental and bioinformatic part of functional genomics with biomedicine and biotechnology. This association will lead to valuable and internationally sound scientific achievements, as well as to improved molecular diagnostic approaches (also in the sense of »personal medicine«) and more effective biological therapeuticals. This ultimately means preservation and growth of jobs/positions for highly educated personel, being actively present in the modern post-genomic scientific trends, as well as partnership with international institutions, equal participation in Europen projects and beyond, creation of environment for staying competitive in the international pharmaceutical market, and finally important contribution to human health. In 2004, we have united scientific expertise from the fields of gene technology, protein and structural biochemistry, cell & molecular biology, medicinal molecular genetics and process biotechnology. Our openness and connectedness has also been demonstrated in founding the Slovenian consortium for functional genomics which has established a joint national infrastructural Centre for Functional Genomics and Bio-Chips. Additionally, we also coordinate the ESRR Centre of Excellence (CoE) Biotechnology with Pharmacy which unites 20 partner laboratories and institutions from the University, research institutes, clinics, S&M entreprises and the Slovenian pharmaceutical industry in a joint effort to raise inovation abilities and build the post-genomic research infrastructure. As mentioned, our field is functional genomics which provides a systematic overview of disease, diagnostics and therapy. Experimnetal approaches are now being upgraded by uniting previous research with bioinformatics and mathematical modelling, which means a leap to systems biology and exploring new possibilities of integrating data at various biological levels. Our scientific goals and the results achieved widely open the door to new possibilities of aplicative research goals – new, modern diagnostic approaches and novel biological drugs. With our scienftific competence we are part of numerous study courses at the University of Ljubljana at the undergraduate level as well as the University post-graduate program Biomedicine. There is wide and growing intrest in courses in molecular biology/genetics and functional genomics, and is reflected in student competitveness for limited young researcher positions. By appearing in the media, we regularly inform the public of our work and participate in public debates on the role of modern science in society. Scince we feel that raising the general level of knowledge in the fileds of biomedicine and biotechnology is especially important in the community, we dedicate special attention to the education of students and their teachers.
Most important scientific results Final report, complete report on dLib.si
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Final report, complete report on dLib.si
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