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Wolfgang, 30.11.2020
A DFG-funded PhD position (E13, 65%) “Evolution of miRNAs in the regulatory networks governing developmental adaptations and acclimation responses in Charophycean green algae towards plant life on land" is available at Cyanolab immediately

Cyanolab, the Genetics and Experimental Bioinformatics unit at the University of Freiburg, Germany, is searching for a scientist to participate in the DFG-funded Priority Program SPP 2237 “MAdLand – Molecular Adaptation to Land: Plant Evolution to Change” within the project "Evolution of miRNAs in the regulatory networks governing developmental adaptations and acclimation responses in Charophycean green algae towards plant life on land". The intended start date is early in 2020, or upon negotiation and the position is limited to a duration of 2 years and 10 months.
Cyanolab researches the RNA biology of photosynthetic organisms. For relevant publications of our laboratory, see iScience (2019) 15, 316-331; Current Biology (2017) 10, 1425–1436; Plant Cell (2014) 26, 3661-3679.
The project tasks will include the analysis of miRNA and of gene regulatory mechanisms in the green algae Chara braunii which holds a key position in the evolution towards land plants. The work plan includes the characterization of regulatory RNAs by RNA-Seq and detailed molecular approaches, the biochemical and functional characterization of ribonucleoprotein complexes, the analysis of transcriptomic datasets and transcription factor binding motifs.
For this we seek a highly motivated candidate with a background in biochemistry, molecular biology or molecular genetics (M.Sc. or equivalent).
The project aims at a fundamental understanding of the role of miRNAs and the miRNA machinery in the early evolution of plants. The work is carried out within an ongoing international collaboration and as part of DFG-funded consortium that involves regular meetings and timely delivery of results. 

Cyanolab is located at the University of Freiburg, located in one of the most beautiful regions of Southern Germany in the heart of Europe. Freiburg is known for its high quality of life at the slopes of the Black Forest, close to the Alps, Switzerland and France. The Faculty of Biology at the University of Freiburg is one of the leading Life Science Departments in the country.

Please send your application by Email to: wolfgang.hess@biologie.uni-freiburg.de
In your application, please include (1) a CV in tabular form, (2) a brief summary of previous research experience and academic qualification, (3) scanned copies of university degrees and (4) contact details for at least one reference.

Freiburg, November 30, 2020

Wolfgang, 28.10.2020
Congratulations to Matthias (Matze)!

Matthias has defended his doctoral thesis on "The complexity of gene regulatory networks in a photosynthetic model organism" at October 26, 2020, with summa cum laude. Big congratulations to this outstanding result and thanks to the DFG for funding through the “MeInBio – BioInMe” PhD program!

Wolfgang, 07.09.2020
The messenger between: How mRNAs convey genetic information to the sites of photosynthetic complex assembly

Photosynthesis is the biological process in which solar energy is converted into chemical energy. The energy is then used to produce organic molecules from carbon dioxide. The key reactions of photosynthesis occur in plants, algae and cyanobacteria in two complex structures, the photosystems. While it is well known that the functional photosystems reside in a special membrane system, the thylakoids, many details of their molecular assembly and the insertion of the proteins into the membranes have remained unknown. A surprising discovery now published in Nature Plants (07 September 2020) demonstrates that it is not the pre-synthesized protein that is transported to the thylakoid membranes for photosystem assembly. Instead, the mRNAs encoding core proteins of the photosystems are transported to the thylakoid membranes in a ribosome-independent process. The findings contribute to a developing concept that mRNA molecules can provide much more than just the sequence of the protein: in this case they also carry signals that seem to control the location and co-ordination of photosystem assembly. The identification of two proteins likely involved in this process by interacting with these mRNAs opens the road towards the detailed understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved. These results have been obtained in an international cooperation between Cyanolab (special congratulations to Luisa and Matze!), Annegret Wilde (Bacterial Genetics Freiburg), Satoru Watanabe (Tokyo, Japan) and was led by the former FRIAS fellow Conrad Mullineaux (Queen Mary University of London, UK). We are grateful for support by the DFG-funded Graduate School 2344 “MeInBio - BioInMe: Exploration of spatio-temporal dynamics of gene regulation using high-throughput and high-resolution methods". 

Wolfgang, 26.07.2019
Award for the best doctoral thesis in the last year

We congratulate Juliane, for receiving the "Elisabeth Gateff Prize 2019" from the German Genetics Society and the "Hans Grisebach Preis 2019" of our university, for her outstanding dissertation on the „Identification and characterization of crRNA processing endoribonucleases and new insights in adaptation and interference during CRISPR-Cas immunity in the model cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803“!

Wolfgang, 02.04.2019
Meeting on "Sensory and Regulatory RNAs in Prokaryotes", July 18-19, in Freiburg

Our website for the annual meeting on “Sensory and Regulatory RNAs in Prokaryotes” is online now. We feel privileged that this year's meeting will take place in Freiburg and are looking forward to it!