Forschung Gottfried Schatz Forschungszentrum

Research focus Signaling

PI: Tobias Madl

Focus: Integrative structural biology and metabolomics. Tobias Madl and his team investigate the molecular mechanisms of how disordered proteins regulate signal transduction, intracellular transport and phase separation. We work at the interface between structural biology, biophysics, cell biology and medicine. NMR spectroscopy and biophysical methods are the most important tools in our laboratory. Our research focuses on the Wnt, FOXO, and p53 signaling pathways, as well as RNA-binding proteins. Disorders in these pathways lead to a variety of diseases, including cancer and neurological diseases, and are linked to aging. We are leading translational biomarker and drug discovery/development projects.

Network: Tobias Madl's research team aims at interdisciplinary research and is involved in complementary and overarching initiatives inside and outside Graz. Examples of this are the platform for integrative metabolism research (NMR-based metabolomics), the NextGen BioXray platform (X-ray-based structural biology), the initiative for integrative structural biology and biophysics, BioTechMed Graz, the PhD program in molecular medicine, the Biomolecular Structures and Interactions, and the doctoral college Metabolic and Cardiovascular Diseases (DK-MCD). Tobias Madl's research team is closely integrated with the clinical area in the fields of metabolism and drug research.


BioTechMed Flagship DYNIMO - dynamics of subcellular localization through protein modification

  • This project aims to elucidate the poorly understood molecular mechanisms by which arginine methylation regulates proteins by determining their subcellular localization. In this project, we combine our complementary research interests and expertise and jointly examine key regulatory mechanisms. A better understanding of the regulated signals that determine subcellular localization of RNA-binding proteins will set the base for establishing causal relationships between protein modification and disease.
  • Duration: 2020-2022
  • Funded by: BioTechMed-Graz
  • Project partners: Brigitte Pertschy (Uni Graz), Ulrich Stelzl (Uni Graz), Birgit Wiltschi (TU Graz)

NextGen BioXray

  • The NextGen BioXray platform is an initiative for the sustainable development of key technologies in Graz. The aim is to combine established and complementary research priorities in the field of structural biology research in an integrative approach through the coordinated acquisition of next-generation biological crystallography and SAXS infrastructure. The initiative builds on the longstanding and complementary expertise of research groups in the field of biological X-ray analysis within the BioTechMed Graz network.
  • Duration: 2019-2023
  • Funded by: FFG
  • Project partners: Walter Keller (Uni Graz), Peter Macheroux (TU Graz)

Regulation of RGG-mediated nuclear import

  • In this project we aim to investigate the molecular details of (mis-)regulated nuclear import of the large class of RG / RGG proteins by studying the interaction and function of the complexes of FUS and CIRP with the nuclear import receptor transportin-1 in vitro and in cell-based assays. Dysregulation of RG / RGG nuclear import is a common feature of serious diseases such as cancer and neurodegeneration. Therefore, a detailed understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms is key to developing alternative strategies for treating disease.
  • Duration: 2018-2022
  • Funded by: FWF
  • Project partner: Dorothee Dormann (Ludwig Maximilians Universität München)

FWF Biomolecular Structures and Interactions

  • In BioMolStruct we assemble a unique group of researchers from three Universities in Graz. Our program will spearhead the growing demand for scientists in integrative structural biology with a solid experimental and theoretical background in molecular biology, biophysics, and structural biology. The program sustains specialized education with deep knowledge in integrative structural biology of dynamic biomolecules and a broad methodological portfolio to address them. To tackle the major challenge of combining complementary structural biology techniques in an integrative approach into one training program, BioMolStruct offers highly competitive thesis projects covering basic research embedded in (patho)physiological contexts.
  • Funded by: FWF, Med Uni Graz
  • Project partners: Karl Gruber (Uni Graz), Walter Keller (Uni Graz), Gustav Oberdorfer (TU Graz), Monika Oberer (Uni Graz), Georg Pabst (Uni Graz), Tea Pavkov-Keller (Uni Graz), Ruth Prassl, Andreas Winkler (TU Graz) Klaus Zangger (Uni Graz)

DK Metabolic and Cardiovascular Diseases (DK-MCD)

  • The DK-MCD is a PhD training program that deals with molecular mechanisms and cellular functions in the pathogenesis of metabolic and cardiovascular diseases. The DK-MCD offers a multidisciplinary faculty and (inter) national exchange of students in the fields of metabolic and cardiovascular diseases from basic research to clinical aspects. As part of the DK-MCD, our team is investigating key mechanistic links between signaling and metabolism.
  • Duration: 2010-2022
  • Funded by: FWF, Med Uni Graz
  • Project partners: Dagmar Krakty, Gerald Höfler, Wolfgang Graier, Klaus Groschner, Peter Fickert, Martin Pichler (Med Uni Graz), Günter Hämmerle, Frank Madeo (Uni Graz), Ruth Birner-Grünberger (TU Wien)

Division of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry

Univ.-Prof. Priv.-Doz. Mag. Dr.
Tobias Madl 
T: +43 316 385 71972

Integrative Metabolism Research Center (iMRC)

The Metabolic Research Center is a project financed by university structural funds - a program of the Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research - within the framework of the BioTechMed-Graz cooperation. The development of the molecular mechanisms of disease development and their connection with environmental influences, aging and stress on the basis of metabolic products is the subject of research at the center.

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BioTechMed-Graz: Integrative Metabolism Research Center (IMRC)

Video aus der Reihe "Wissenswert"