Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Extremophiles as a source of novel bioactive substances

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
1.05.00  Natural sciences and mathematics  Biochemistry and molecular biology   

Code Science Field
P310  Natural sciences and mathematics  Proteins, enzymology 
P320  Natural sciences and mathematics  Nucleic acids, protein synthesis 
P340  Natural sciences and mathematics  Lipids, steroids, membranes 
B002  Biomedical sciences  Biophysics 
B230  Biomedical sciences  Microbiology, bacteriology, virology, mycology 
B260  Biomedical sciences  Hydrobiology, marine biology, aquatic ecology, limnology 
extremophilic microorganism, archaea, halophilic, thermophilic, biodiversity, thermal stability, thermozymes, biotechnology
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (15)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  01522  PhD Veronika Abram  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2007  309 
2.  07028  PhD Helena Abramovič  Plant production  Researcher  2004 - 2007  251 
3.  15581  PhD Blaž Cigić  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2007  359 
4.  25518  PhD Miha Črnigoj  Pharmacy  Junior researcher  2005 - 2007  43 
5.  09836  PhD Blagajana Herzog-Velikonja  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004 - 2007  121 
6.  11548  PhD Barbka Jeršek  Animal production  Researcher  2004 - 2007  415 
7.  06986  PhD Milica Kač  Chemistry  Researcher  2004 - 2007  251 
8.  23483  PhD Enej Kuščer  Biotechnology  Junior researcher  2004 - 2007  37 
9.  22493  PhD Igor Milek  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2004  14 
10.  15650  PhD Lea Pogačnik  Chemistry  Researcher  2004  287 
11.  10873  PhD Nataša Poklar Ulrih  Chemistry  Head  2004 - 2007  819 
12.  15466  PhD Mihaela Skrt  Biotechnology  Researcher  2004 - 2007  154 
13.  08384  PhD Nataša Šegatin  Chemistry  Researcher  2004 - 2007  132 
14.  01119  PhD Marjeta Šentjurc  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Mentor to junior researcher  2004 - 2007  511 
15.  19132  PhD Tanja Vilfan  Biochemistry and molecular biology  Researcher  2005 - 2007  14 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0106  Jožef Stefan Institute  Ljubljana  5051606000  88,063 
2.  0481  University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty  Ljubljana  1626914  65,737 
Biodiversity: Extremophilic microorganisms are adopted to survive in ecological niches as high temperatures, extremes of pH, high salt concentration and high pressure. The Archaea constitute a separate domain of possibly ancient organisms that exist under extreme conditions. Members of archaeal family Halobacteriaceae thrive in natural lakes and sediments of high salinity or alkaline soda lakes, but also in solar salterns and other hypersaline environments of antropogenic origin. Although, the solar salterns around the world have been extensively studied, little is known about haloarcheal diversity in the salterns of the Adriatic coast. Thermal stability: Interestingly, the upper temperature border of life is still unknown and depends on the stability of biomacromolecules. Cell components such as lipids, nucleic acids and proteins are usually quite heat sensitive. Membrane lipids of all archaea (including mesophiles) contain either lipids derived from diphytanyl-glicerol or its dimer di(biphytanyl)-glicerol, which exhibit remarkable resistance against hydrolysis at high temperatures and at acid pH. Thermal resistance of the DNA double helix appears to be improved in hyperthermophiles by reverse gyrase, a unique type I DNA topoisomerase that cause positive supertwists for stabilization in addition to histones. The secondary structure of ribonucleic acid appears to be stabilized against thermal destruction by an increase content of GC base pairs within the steam areas and by post-transcriptional modification. Biotechnology: Extremophilic archaea have many attractive properties worth to exploit. They grow under unusual conditions - unusual conditions have resulted in the evolution of unusual proteins and enzymes with attractive properties for exploitation. In particular we will focus on halophilic proteins, antimicrobials named halocins and selected extracellular-polymer-degrading enzymes, such as proteinases, with a possible use in food, chemical and pharmaceutical industries and in environmental biotechnology.
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