New Article in Cell Reports: Control of bacterial virulence through the peptide signature of the habitat

Krypotou, E., Scortti, M., Grundström, C., Oelker, M., Luisi, B.F., Sauer-Eriksson, A.E. & Vázquez-Boland, J. Control of bacterial virulence through the peptide signature of the habitat. (2019) Cell Reports, 26, 1815-1827.

We identify a major control mechanism of Listeria virulence based on antagonistic regulation by environmental peptides.Activity levels of the virulence regulator PrfA depend on the net balance between the rates of synthesis of the PrfA-activating cofactor GSH from exogenous peptide-derived cysteine and of direct, promiscuous PrfA inhibition by non-cysteine-containing peptides

New ISB Article by Erik Johansson et al in Nature Communications

Professor Erik Johansson has published an article in Nature Communications named “Structural consequence of the most frequently recurring cancer-associated substitution in DNA polymerase epsilon“. The study was a collaboration with Uppsala University and University of Nebraska Medical Center. The article can be found at: “”

Magnus Wolf-Watz named professor

Magnus Wolf-Watz was named professor in biophysical chemistry on May 1:st 2018.

Ronnie Berntsson awarded the Swedish Foundation Starting Grant

Ronnie Berntsson has be awarded the Swedish Foundation Starting grant for research on Type 4 Secretion Systems.

For more info see:


Collaborative grant for flavivirus research

The Swedish Research Council has decided to award a 25.2 MSEK grant to a coalition of research groups at Umeå University and the University of Helsinki within the call “Research environment grant within infection and antibiotics”.

The project “Multimodal imaging and proteomics to study flavivirus replication and molecular disease mechanisms” is headed by flavivirologist Anna Överby Wernstedt at Umeå University and includes the biostruct-affiliated group of Lars-Anders Carlson. The other two teams involved in the collaboration are the Umeå-based group of Richard Lundmark and the Helsinki-based group of Sarah Butcher.

Ronnie Berntsson is as of now a Wallenberg Molecular Medicine Fellow

As of 1st of December Ronnie Berntsson has started as a Wallenberg Molecular Medicine Fellow at Umeå University.

New Integrated Structural Biology article: “Formation of a translocation competent protein complex by a dynamic wrap-around binding mechanism.”

This paper from the Wolf-Watz lab describes the discovery of a fundamentally new mechanism underlying protein-protein interactions. The chaperone-binding domain of the Yersinia effector protein YopH was found to lose its globular structure upon formation of a wrap-around architecture with its chaperone SycH. The mechanism is best described as a coupled binding and disordering event. The finding was enabled by an integrated structural biology approach by a five-lab effort and centered on NMR, SAXS and computational chemistry.

The article is published in Journal of Molecular Biology (2018), 430, 3157.

PhD student position available in the group of Ronnie Berntsson

We have a PhD student position available, for structural and functional studies of bacterial Type 4 Secretion Systems.
We are looking for an enthusiastic and highly motivated individual who has an interest in large protein machineries. We use biochemistry, molecular biology, x-ray crystallography and cryo-EM to study Type 4 Secretion Systems, mainly of Gram-positive origin.

The Berntsson lab is part of the integrated structural biology network at Umeå University, and from the 1st of December also part of the Wallenberg Center for Molecular Medicine. We are well equipped with state of the art technologies, both for crystallography and EM, including a nanodrop crystallisation robots, Formulatrix crystallisation hotel, an EM facility with Titan Krios and Scios Dualbeam for FIB-milling, as well as other strong facilities.

For further information, and to apply, please go to the official ad:

Informal inquiries about the position can be directed to me at Applications must be sent in via the online recruitment system, with a deadline at 7th of December.

PhD defence Artur Dingeldein

On June 1st Artur Dingeldein successfully defended his PhD thesis.

Congratulations Artur!