Basic research at the Department is well established in areas of molecular biology of retroviruses, proteomics, plant biochemistry and physiology, enzymology, environmental microbiology, development of new methods in food microbiology and bioanalytics. The research outcomes provide a platform for modern therapeutic approaches, applications in plant protection against pathogens, biodegradation and bioremediation of organic and inorganic pollutants, and others. Broad and interdisciplinary research scope is based on intensive collaborations with local and foreign research institutes and universities in joint programs and projects. An integral part of the Department is a laboratory accredited to analyze food-borne pathogens and genetically modified organisms (ISO/IEC 17025).
Current research topics and areas of expertise:
• Retrovirus assembly, structure, cellular interactions and trafficking of retrovirus proteins
• Virus-like particles for tumor imaging and therapeutic gene delivery
• Identification of proteins locally deposited due to implant applications or as a consequence of calcification of hart and vessel valves.
• Evaluation of biocompatibility of materials for tissue replacements and bone fixations
• Inhibitory effects of cytostatics tested on cancer cells in vitro
• Plant and insect nucleases and their anti-neoplastic effects
• Lipid bodies as targeted carriers of hydrophobic drugs
• Adipokines and nutritional and pharmacological interventions in treatment of metabolic syndrome
• Pharmaceutically important antimicrobial peptides of plant and insect origin
• Glycosidases from extremophiles and chemo-enzymatic synthesis of bioactive therapeutic glycoconjugates
• Modeling of protein structure and dynamic conformation changes
• Phospholipid signaling pathways in plants during physiological processes
• Molecular mechanisms of biotic and abiotic stress response in plants; induced pathogen resistance with possible application of elicitor/effector molecules in agricultural practice
• Metabolic conversions of xenobiotics and use of microorganisms and plants in bioremediations of environmental pollution with emphasis on persistent PCBs, PAHs, BTEX and pesticides
• Functional genomic and metagenomic approaches and mass spectrometry methods to evaluate diversity and biodegradation potential of bacteria and plants, including their mutual interactions
• Assessment of toxicity and genotoxicity of xenobiotics and their decomposition products and development of immunochromatograpy kits for their detection
• Molecular basis of heavy metal (hyper)accumulation and tolerance in macrofungi.
• Improving capacity of plants to remedy soils and sediments contaminated with organics and heavy metals through genetic modification
• Surface display of metal-binding peptides to improve capacity and specificity of heavy metal biosorbents of microbial origin
• Perspectives of lipid bodies in synthesis of biodegradable plastics and treatment of oil spills
• Development of molecular and immunochemical methods of detection and quantification of food pathogens and improvements of classic microbiology assays
• Molecular biology of Staphylococcus aureus with emphasis on enterotoxin expression.
• Microbial biofilms and their resistance against disinfection agents; resistance of emerging food pathogens against antibiotics
• Regulation of Listeria monocytogenes biofilm formation
• Certified methods and development of new methods of detection and quantification of genetically modified organisms in foodstuff and food ingredients
prof. Ing. Tomáš Ruml, CSc., Department Head
Tel: +420 220 44 3022, E-mail: Tomas.Ruml@vscht.cz