We are pleased to inform you that one of the most prestigious scientific magazines in the world – “Cell” – has published an article written by a team of Polish scientists from the Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw (IBB PAN). This is the second publication in its history to have a Polish mailing address in the magazine, the first having been published in 1990.
The first author of the publication and originator of the research project was Dr Zbigniew Warkocki. The other members of the team were Dr Paweł Krawczyk, Dorota Adamska, Krystian Bijata and Jose L. Garcia-Perez and the project was supervised by Prof. Andrzej Dziembowski.
The article published in “Cell”, entitled Uridylation by TUT4/7 Restricts Retrotransposition of Human LINE-1s, concerns the mechanisms of defence against the so-called jumping genes (retrotransposons) which were described for the first time by the Polish researchers. The retrotransposons are DNA fragments that constitute characteristic parasites in cells, they are completely useless, and even harmful. Earlier descriptions involved the manner of inhibition by a cell of DNA fragment activity, which leads to the multiplication of harmful retrotransposons, whereas, at present, the Polish scientists have explained how a cell may defend itself against these genetic parasites during a further stage, when a retrotransposon has already activated.
The research conducted by the team lead by Prof. Dziembowski was, to a great extent, financed by the National Science Centre within the FUGA 1 grant, during which Dr Warkocki came from Germany for an placement in IBB PAN. The research was also financed from the two grants received by Prof. Andrzej Dziembowski: the ERC Starting Grant and the TEAM grant by the Foundation for Polish Science TEAM. Prof. Dziembowski is also a grantee of the National Science Centre and a 2013 NCN prize-winner.