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  • Final Activity Report Summary - MACROGENEX (Macromolecular assemblies Involved in regulated gene expression: structural/functional characteristics, interplay and novel functions)

Final Activity Report Summary - MACROGENEX (Macromolecular assemblies Involved in regulated gene expression: structural/functional characteristics, interplay and novel functions)

The major objective of our TOK-DEV project was to carry out multidisciplinary research to develop competence in the field of structure, function and interplay of selected macromolecular assemblies participating in regulated gene expression, namely:
(A) the TFIID basal transcription complex and its interactions with members of the AP-1 family of transcription factors;
(B) the TAC (TBP-TFIIA-containing) transcription complex and its putative involvement in nuclear receptor regulation of cell proliferation and differentiation; and
(C) the specific transcription factor TAFII68 (TAF15) and its participation in novel multi-protein complexes.

Our objective was based on the research competence of the host researchers involved in the project (partner 1), who are members of three labs of the Institute of Biological Research and Biotechnology (IBRB), National Hellenic Research Foundation (NHRF):
(A) signal mediated gene expression (head: A. Pintzas);
(B) molecular endocrinology (head: M. N. Alexis);
(C ) RNA processing (head and coordinator: A. Guialis).

To reach our research objectives, the host institute relied on the hiring of incoming fellows (experienced researchers 4-10 years) to be assigned to labs. A, B and C. In addition, we invested on knowledge and technology transfer from the two partners labs: partner 2 of the Institute of Genetics, Molecular and Cellular Biology, CNRS, Strasbourg, France (Head Dr L. Tora) and partner 3 of the Department of Molecular Biology, NCMLS, Radboud University, Nijmegen, Netherlands (Head Prof. H. G. Stunnenberg).

Below, we briefly outline the results of our objectives during the four year-period of project implementation.

Firstly, the successful incorporation of seven, in total, incoming fellows working along the lines of the specified Tasks of the project, constituted the basis of our scientific achievements. To this extent, we succeeded in making a full implementation of transfer of knowledge by incoming fellows, reaching a total of 134 person-months.

The achievement of a substantial scientific progress made on the assigned tasks. This progress is depicted in the list of abstracts presented at international meetings and of several publications in peer-reviewed journals with more being at a final stage of preparation.

The organisation of three workshops that took place in the host institute which provided the opportunity to host scientists, incoming fellows and members of the partners' labs to discuss their scientific findings and exchange ideas.

The transfer of new technologies from the partners' labs that was implemented by outgoing host researchers. This mainly refers to the use of proteomics for protein identification of the complexes, expression systems for selected proteins, RNAi inhibition of specific protein expression, chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays and genome-wide location of transcription-factor binding sites (ChIP on chip and ChIP-sequencing).

The ability to make proper application and use of total project budget and to present two successful Audit reports (mid-term and final).

The opportunity provided to the majority of our incoming fellows to continue their scientific carrier in other European scientific environments.

The implementation of collaborative Tasks with the partners that provided for common publications.

The development of new collaborative projects and preparation of joint proposals with the partners. The implementation of the MACROGENEX project, together with additional Marie-Curie projects run in NHRF, that provided the basis for NHRF being currently a Marie-Curie hosting centre. We also note here the contribution of MACROGENEX towards naming our host institute (IBRB) a centre of excellence for biological research and biotechnology after an evaluation conducted in 2005 by an international scientific committee under the auspices of the General Secretariat for Research and Technology of Greece.

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