Department of Life Sciences - Studentin betrachtet eine Probe durch ein Mikroskop

Research – Department of Science and Technology

The Department of Science and Technology provides innovative solutions to real-world problems by fostering interdisciplinary education and research.

Building a sustainable future through technology and science as foundational pillars

Through seamless integration of different scientific disciplines when addressing the key challenges of our time, the Department of Science and Technology contributes to the development of a sustainable future. By meeting the ever-changing research and education needs of the industry, whether in biotechnology, applied chemistry or computer science, we drive new ways of managing data and intelligent systems, and focus on various aspects of applied biomedicine and chemistry research such as cancer, immune system disorders, toxicology, drug research, material sciences, artificial intelligence, etc.

The interdisciplinary team is optimally composed of committed academic, administrative, technical and support staff. We act as an international academic competence center of interdisciplinary education and research. 

Biologie Studenten im Labor
Zwei Biologie Studenten mit einer Zentrifuge
Biologie Studentin nimmt eine Probe mit einer Pipette

Research focus areas: Department of Science and Technology

In the Department of Science and Technology we concentrate our research activities on the following main research focuses

 

In the research focus medical biotechnology, we deal with the identification, validation and optimisation of molecules and biologics, which can be used in personalised medicine, antiviral therapies or as biomarkers. Within this focus, many methods and resources have been established over the past years:

  • Tissue engineering and 3D organotypic disease models, reporter cell lines for analysis of the mechanisms of action of bioactive molecules 
  • Humane cell culture models and co-culture models
  • Platforms for therapeutic peptide and antibody production and in-silico modelling & screening
  • Platform for the development of antiviral therapies
  • Optogenetic engineering of cell lines and receptors

Contact person: Harald Hundsberger

The research focus bioprocess engineering deals with the systematic characterisation of bioreactors (oxygen transfer based on geometries, oxygen transfer matrix and macromixing), the optimisation of bioprocesses for the production of recombinant active substances in bacterial host systems and yeast systems, and the establishment of co-cultivation of extremophilic microorganisms for the extraction of pharmaceutically active secondary metabolites. The following methods and resources have been developed in recent years:

  • Characterisation of bioreactors for fermentation
  • Definition of bioreactor design specifications
  • Optimisation of bioprocesses for the production of recombinant proteins
  • Co-cultivation of microorganisms for the production of biologically active secondary metabolites
  • Biocatalytic reactions

Contact person: Harald Hundsberger

In this research field we deal with the production and synthesis of new materials. One focus will be on renewable raw materials. However, the subject area also allows the use of a variety of other starting materials and the production of further target products. In addition, both starting products and intermediate and end products will be analysed and characterised using the appropriate methods in order to evaluate possible new applications. By dealing with this topic area, we contribute to a positive development of the location and to a further acceptance of sustainable technologies, and position ourselves as an attractive partner for academic institutions and chemical companies.

Contact person: Uwe Rinner

In this research field, we explore how digital transformation can become an integral mechanism for companies to achieve breakthrough innovation and sustainable development.

We support industry partners in assessing and accepting new technologies along the entire value chain to realise the potential of transforming the traditional economy into the digital economy. In addition, we conduct research in the field of organisational development, integration and transformation by analysing and adapting new business models and innovation methods.

Contact person: Deepak Dhungana

This research area focuses on the analysis, design, development and application of software engineering methods and tools for intelligent systems, which incorporate data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) for the benefit of society and business.

The main objective is to solve challenging (industrial) problems by developing, operating and maintaining software systems that involve complex decision-making processes, using data-driven methods and artificial intelligence as the backbone of the solution architecture. The integration of AI tools into software engineering promises enormous benefits to push the digitalisation wave.

Contact person: Deepak Dhungana

Franz Herzog am Massenspektrometer

Clinical Proteomics Krems endowed professorship

Research using the high-end mass spectrometer

The objective of this endowed professorship is to set up Clinical Proteomics Krems, a research laboratory in which high-resolution mass spectrometry will be used to develop cutting-edge proteomics technologies for biomedical research and patient-specific analysis in clinical studies.

ENDOWED PROFESSORSHIP

Research projects

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Course scheduling for modular educational system

    1609

    In modular educational systems, students have a certain degree of freedom to choose their own subjects. Usually, the choices a student is allowed to make are subject to constraints, such like choosing courses from given pools of electives. This...

    In modular educational systems, students have a certain degree of freedom to choose their own subjects. Usually, the choices a student is allowed to make are subject to constraints, such like choosing courses from given pools of electives. This pedagogical concept is already practiced in certain parts of Europe, like in the German Gymnasium and is being increasingly adopted in other countries (i.e. in Austria with the "modulare Oberstufe"). However implementing such a course election system in practice is a major challenge for educational institutions, that can only be solved using advanced optimization algorithms and AI techniques. In this applied research project we investigate algorithms for solving different variants of this problem efficiently and help schools and educational institutions implement this concept in practice.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    EvoFerm

    1556

    Together with IST-Austria, the bioprocess technology research group wants to develop a method that makes it possible to make various microorganisms resistant to high metal concentrations.

    A major difficulty in developing a metal recycling...

    Together with IST-Austria, the bioprocess technology research group wants to develop a method that makes it possible to make various microorganisms resistant to high metal concentrations.

    A major difficulty in developing a metal recycling technology is that the metals to be recovered have a toxic effect on the microorganisms above a certain concentration. This limits a method based on this idea.

    To solve this problem, the partners in this project are pursuing the approach of making microorganisms already selected for recycling more resistant to high concentrations of metal ions by means of a newly developed system. This approach is based on a method developed at IST-Austria in which microorganisms are gradually exposed to higher and higher concentrations of certain metals in a multifermenter system. In this way, strains can be grown that have not been genetically modified but have undergone a kind of accelerated evolution. Such strains would be ideally suited for recycling and sustainable technologies.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    NOEDIKOM

    1403

    In Lower Austria there are an infinite number of “gems”, be it wonderful places in historical towns, historical buildings or unique works of art and wonderful rooms that are hardly known. The digitization of such “gems” brings many strategic...

    In Lower Austria there are an infinite number of “gems”, be it wonderful places in historical towns, historical buildings or unique works of art and wonderful rooms that are hardly known. The digitization of such “gems” brings many strategic possibilities with it. On the one hand, the tourism aspect can be seen, which is about advertising and external impact locally or at trade fairs across Europe. On the other hand, the awareness of the population can also be expanded here, who often do not know about such "treasures" in Lower Austria and can be specifically informed here via different platforms. Another point is the preservation of art and culture as well as historical buildings. The 3D models can be used for reconstructions before the restoration to give experts access to the corresponding objects. Construction work is always difficult, especially in public spaces in historical areas, as it is often difficult to imagine the influence of a renovation beforehand; this would be easy to implement with such 3D models. In consultation with the country's tourism department and experts for cultural heritage, the project would select objects and regions to digitize them in different ways (laser scans, photograms, drone recordings, 3D reconstruction ...). The 3D models obtained from this would then be embedded in corresponding applications (depending on use) and made available to the various stakeholders (museums, municipalities, tourism associations, monument office ...). Here the applications used can be used for feedback with the help of simple questionnaires to check the general acceptance of such 3D implementations.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Spike-Fermentation

    1407

    This project, which is being carried out jointly by the Krems University of Applied Sciences and the Austrian Red Cross, is concerned with the production of the spike protein of the corona virus, which is responsible for the current pandemic.

    As...

    This project, which is being carried out jointly by the Krems University of Applied Sciences and the Austrian Red Cross, is concerned with the production of the spike protein of the corona virus, which is responsible for the current pandemic.

    As SARS-CoV-2 is a member of the corona virus family, it shows great similarities with other members of this family. A variable but well conserved region of the virus is produced by fermentation in order to be able to use it for the antibody tests. This should increase the specificity of these tests, which are carried out at the Austrian Red Cross.

    These findings can then be used to make much more accurate and reliable statements about the spread of SARS-CoV-2.

     

    https://www.efre.gv.at/

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    VRWalk

    1396

    When training in virtual rooms, it is more and more necessary not only to act statically, but the people to be trained must around move in the virtual room. This movement can be shown in several ways (teleportation, joystick movement ...). Many of...

    When training in virtual rooms, it is more and more necessary not only to act statically, but the people to be trained must around move in the virtual room. This movement can be shown in several ways (teleportation, joystick movement ...). Many of these movements result in nau-sea, shingles, headaches, and other problems in varying numbers of participants. These symptoms are often referred to as motion sickness or cybersickness. This significantly limits the possibilities of training in VR and therefore also enormously restricts the potential of the training. The different options are often aimed at different solutions (e.g. Virtualizer, Om-nideck, ...). The physical as well as the electronic (resolution, immersion, interaction) factors are often considered very individually. The idea here would be to reach a large number of test persons in several large-scale tests with different demos, who work through various possibili-ties, sometimes in combination, in order to get a more precise picture of how such a move-ment can best be realized. On the other hand, the health and motivational factors should also be considered here to be able to give recommendations for different applications in the indus-trial, school and university sectors from the anonymized results.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Development of optogenetic controllable MSC cell lines for the precise regulation of immunomodulatory factors

    1347

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are a key player in the field of regenerative medicine due to their numerous regenerative properties. For example, their ability to selectively home into injury/inflammation areas and their immunomodulatory effects...

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are a key player in the field of regenerative medicine due to their numerous regenerative properties. For example, their ability to selectively home into injury/inflammation areas and their immunomodulatory effects allows the treatment of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.

    For this reason, we are planning to establish new, meaningful biological assay systems in this project that will allow to describe the underlying mechanisms that occur in stem cell therapies. Therefore, we will engineer highly standardized MSC cell lines using optogenetic manipulation, in which specific signaling pathways can be switched on and off by light. After characterization and validation under physiologic conditions, an automation of the models using the Oli-Up cell culture systems from LifeTaq-Analytics GmbH is planned.

    The project is carried out in cooperation with BOKU Vienna and LifeTaq-Analytics GmbH and funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under the BRIDGE programme.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Dataskop - Sensor-Based Data Economy in Lower Austria

    1096

    The "Dataskop" research project strengthens the digital development of Lower Austria and is considered a milestone in digitization. The "Dataskop" project is concerned with visualizing the data from sensors and is being implemented jointly by several...

    The "Dataskop" research project strengthens the digital development of Lower Austria and is considered a milestone in digitization. The "Dataskop" project is concerned with visualizing the data from sensors and is being implemented jointly by several universities.

    The "Dataskop" project aims to make invisible data visible in their real environment and consequently usable. The focus is on the outdoor area, away from well-developed digital infrastructures. Location-based environmental data are collected and displayed via sensors. For the rural area of Lower Austria, digital support means a sustainable improvement in the public sector. Future fields of application could be in disaster control, agriculture, especially viticulture, drinking water supply or winter services.

    The interdisciplinary research team includes researchers from the IMC University of Applied Sciences Krems, the University of Applied Sciences St. Pölten, FOTEC Forschungs- und Technologietransfer GmbH in Wiener Neustadt and the Department for Integrated Sensor Systems of the Danube University Krems, also located in Wiener Neustadt.

    In the course of the project, which will run for three years, the cooperation partners will also deal with data acquisition, IT security and the economic use of data. In addition to the scientific publications, the developed basic technologies will be made publicly available as open source software and hardware components. The project, funded by the province of Lower Austria, thus makes an important contribution to the goals of the Lower Austrian research, technology and innovation program.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Immobilization on Camelid Antibodies for therapeutic Apheresis and Dialysis support

    1208

    This project aims at utilizing camelide antibodies, which are much smaller then human antibodies, to, together with surface specialists at the Austrian Institute of Technologies (AIT), create a surface with high density of immobilized Camelid...

    This project aims at utilizing camelide antibodies, which are much smaller then human antibodies, to, together with surface specialists at the Austrian Institute of Technologies (AIT), create a surface with high density of immobilized Camelid antibodies and therefore better binding affinity of target molecules or molecule groups.

    Those surfaces are meant to be applied in products for therapeutic apheresis, together with Fresenius Medical Care, to achieve improved purification of and removal of specific harmful substances from patient blood.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Museopedagogy and Augmented reality: Recognizing museums as educational spaces

    1295

    The MONA project is the acronym for Erasmus+ project KA201 Museopedagogy and Augmented reality: Recognizing museums as educational spaces with code: 2019-1-EL01-KA201-062965.

     

    Our project intends to bring culture closer to the younger audience and...

    The MONA project is the acronym for Erasmus+ project KA201 Museopedagogy and Augmented reality: Recognizing museums as educational spaces with code: 2019-1-EL01-KA201-062965.

     

    Our project intends to bring culture closer to the younger audience and especially the school audience through the creation of an integrated educational program provided in four museums in Europe using modern technology with emphasis on augmented and mixed reality.

     

    MONA project hopes to turn the school visit to the museum into a stunning, charming and enjoyable learning process through experiential practice and play. The target audience is the whole school community, but mainly focusing on children, teenagers and teachers in the areas of the partners.

     

    The consortium of the project consists of 4 museums, 2 schools, 2 universities and 2 technical organizations from 4 European countries.

     

    More information about the project can be found on the project website: monaproject.eu/en/

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Biomarker-based therapeutic prevention of bone metastases in breast cancer: the pathophysiological role of the endosteal niche

    1134

    The purpose of this project is to investigate the pathophysiological role of the endosteal niche, and in particular the role of osteoblast precursors in the development of breast cancer bone metastases. The objectives of the research include...

    The purpose of this project is to investigate the pathophysiological role of the endosteal niche, and in particular the role of osteoblast precursors in the development of breast cancer bone metastases. The objectives of the research include identifying new biomarkers that predict the potential of tumour cells to form bone metastases. A further aim is to identify substances which prevent metastases by modifying the endosteal niche. Based on initial work using a 2D co-culture system, investigations will now also be conducted in a 3D system. The project is being carried out in close cooperation with Karl Landsteiner University of Health Sciences.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Development of powerful diagnostic procedures and new therapeutic approaches in inflammation and sepsis

    1201

    Sepsis is a life-threatening organ dysfunction resulting from severe systemic inflammation caused by an infection. Despite many improved therapeutic measures, the mortality rate from sepsis is still 15-25%, and for septic shock 30-50% (Hotchkiss et...

    Sepsis is a life-threatening organ dysfunction resulting from severe systemic inflammation caused by an infection. Despite many improved therapeutic measures, the mortality rate from sepsis is still 15-25%, and for septic shock 30-50% (Hotchkiss et al., 2016). Endothelial cells, which line the inner surface of blood vessels and capillary beds, play a central role in this life-threatening condition. In the early stages of sepsis, microbial factors such as LPS, which binds to Toll-like receptors, are responsible for directly activating endothelial cells. Endogenous agonists – released by activated leukocytes, endothelial cells or damaged cells for instance – subsequently promote the endothelial dysfunction. In this project we plan to develop new, highly-standardised cell models in which the specific signalling pathways of the Toll-like receptors can be switched on or off by means of light induction. From the light-activatable cell lines obtained in this way, we will establish physiologically relevant models of sepsis which can then be used to investigate intracellular signalling pathways and expression of different sepsis-inducing factors, microvascular endothelial permeability, and potential therapeutic agents. The objective is to mimic sepsis-inducing inflammation by switching the signalling pathways on or off (in the absence of bacterial factors) optogenetically. The project is being carried out in cooperation with Danube University Krems and UK St. Pölten.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Digital Innovation Hub OST (DIHOST)

    1194

    The DIHOST project, funded by the FFG and the federal states of Lower Austria and Burgenland, has been offering a comprehensive service program for three years to increase the ability and speed of transformation of small and medium-sized enterprises...

    The DIHOST project, funded by the FFG and the federal states of Lower Austria and Burgenland, has been offering a comprehensive service program for three years to increase the ability and speed of transformation of small and medium-sized enterprises in Eastern Austria towards digital innovations.

     

    DIHOST offers low-threshold access to expert knowledge, the possibility to test and implement (new) digital infrastructures & enables international connections to European networks.

     

    The main areas of responsibility can be divided into three pillars:

     

    1) Information (awareness, maturity level, checks, advice, technology scouting, funding checks,)

     

    2) Continuing education (offers for SMEs, in-house training, webinars, blendid learning, best practices, workshops)

     

    3) Digital innovation (access to infrastructure, e.g. 3D printing, business model development, prototyping, OI)

     

    The DIHOST network includes the consortium partners ecoplus Niederösterreichs Wirtschaftsagentur GmbH, FH St.Pölten, Austrian Blockchain Center, FOTEC, Forschung Burgenland and IMC FH Krems. The WKO and the House of Digitization act as additional network partners.

     

    Project manager at the IMC FH Krems is Prof. (FH) Mag. Gerhard Kormann-Hainzl.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Extracellular vesicles from Hoffa´s fat pad - a new approach for cartilage regeneration?

    1133

    As the incidence of osteoarthritis increased over the last years, development of new therapeutic approaches for osteochondral regeneration came into the focus of tissue engineering research.

     

    The focus of this project lay in evaluating the...

    As the incidence of osteoarthritis increased over the last years, development of new therapeutic approaches for osteochondral regeneration came into the focus of tissue engineering research.

     

    The focus of this project lay in evaluating the therapeutic potential of extracellular vesicles isolated from mesenchymal stem cells derived from the Hoffa´s fat pad on processes occurring during osteoarthritis. The Hoffa´s fat pad is located intra-articularly behind and under the patellar. Due to its proximity to the cartilage, mesenchymal stem cells from this adipose tissue are more involved in the development and progression of osteoarthritis as mesenchymal stem cells derived from bone marrow which are often used for cartilage regeneration studies.

     

    The majority of the project was conducted at the Danube University Krems, with the IMC University of applied Sciences Krems taking on the proteomic analysis of the extracellular vesicles by mass spectrometry. Further project partners were the Medical University of Vienna and OrthoSera GmbH. The project was funded within the Life Science Call 2018 by the NÖ Gesellschaft für Forschungsförderung (GFF).

     

    A wholistic characterisation of the extracellular vesicles from Hoffa's fat pad could be concluded. The complete proteome analysis showed a multitude of regenerative signaling molecules as well as confirmed the transfer of proteins from the various serum tretments to the vesicles.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Theraferm

    1156

    Two therapeutic proteins are produced fermentatively for the Austrian Red Cross.

    These proteins are of great importance for the blood tests at the OeRK, as they improve the quality of the tests and simplify them.

    Interfering drugs that can be...

    Two therapeutic proteins are produced fermentatively for the Austrian Red Cross.

    These proteins are of great importance for the blood tests at the OeRK, as they improve the quality of the tests and simplify them.

    Interfering drugs that can be found in the patient's blood, e.g. during cancer treatment, can be bound with these proteins and thus easily separated.

    Therefore, they do not interfere with further tests and no false-positive results are produced, which then have to be further investigated at great expense.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Mixed Reality Based Collaboration for Industry (MRBC4i)

    1094

    Virtual reality and augmented reality – often referred to together as mixed reality (MR) – have attracted significant attention among companies in recent years, as well as prompting questions about the technologies’ applicability in business.

     

    A...

    Virtual reality and augmented reality – often referred to together as mixed reality (MR) – have attracted significant attention among companies in recent years, as well as prompting questions about the technologies’ applicability in business.

     

    A number of potential applications for MR are being implemented as part of a project entitled Mixed Reality Based Collaboration for Industry (MRBCi). In order to ensure that the project is aligned with challenges faced by companies in their day-to-day operations, businesses were surveyed about the specific problems they encounter in connection with these technologies, and the results analysed. The MRBCi project is centred on implementation of applications in four subject areas: production support, remote support, education and training, and product presentation.

    The following problems related to MR technologies were identified:

    Problem 1 – entry barriers: at present, a number of showcase applications are available, but examples of the truly effective use of MR in the field are extremely thin on the ground.

    Problem 2 – enabling: MR projects typically make it past the prototype stage only very rarely, as significant resources are required for project set-up and initial development of these prototypes.

    Problem 3 –effective implementation: integration of technical solutions in companies’ business processes and day-to-day operations is currently only found in very few cases.

     

    Interdisciplinary collaboration between the research partners has paved the way for the optimum integration of wide-ranging skills and expertise from the various research focuses. The MRBC4i project aims to help Austrian industry take a significant step forward in achieving the following objectives:

    1) Reducing entry barriers (technical, organisational and psychological)

    2) Reducing the resources required and in turn the costs for enterprises (enabling)

    3) Analysing the impacts on business processes and models, stakeholder acceptance and readiness (maturity).

     

    IMC University of Applied Sciences Krems is heading up the accompanying research activities in the MRBC4i project, in collaboration with Technical University Vienna and St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences. The aim of the work package is to address the following question regarding analysis of the impacts on business processes and models, stakeholder acceptance and readiness (maturity): how can mixed reality assistance systems be evaluated using a multi-dimensional criteria set that is suitable for industry?

     

    The project has been submitted to the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG) under the Collective Research funding programme. The Lower Austrian business agency, ecoplus. Niederösterreichs Wirtschaftsagentur GmbH, has overall responsibility for management of the MRBCI project, which involves the plastics and mechatronics clusters in Lower Austria.

     

    If you have any questions, please mail Prof. Gerhard Kormann-Hainzl at [email protected]

    Corporate project partners

    • Bene GmbH

    • Bilfinger Chemserv GmbH

    • Codeflügel GmbH

    • Geodata Ziviltechnikergesellschaft mbH

    • Jabil Circuit Austria GmbH

    • KBA-Mödling GmbH

    • Knorr-Bremse GmbH

    • Kotányi GmbH

    • Kremsmüller Industrieanlagenbau KG

    • Lenze Operations Austria GmbH

    • MAN Truck & Bus Österreich GesmbH

    • Mayr-Melnhof Karton Aktiengesellschaft

    • MBIT Digital Solutions

    • ÖBB-Business Competence Center GmbH

    • Piesslinger GmbH

    • Prometa GmbH

    • Lower Austrian Red Cross

    • Semperit

    • Test-Fuchs GmbH

    • Umdasch Group Ventures GmbH

    • Voith Paper Rolls GmbH & Co KG

    • Wittmann Battenfeld GmbH

     

    R&D project partners

    • St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences

    • FOTEC Forschungs- und Technologietransfer GmbH

    • University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria

    • IMC University of Applied Sciences Krems

    • TU Wien

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Scan2VR

    1083

    The present project was about the merging of different areas. There are already solutions today which are able to capture rooms and surroundings. There are also solutions to capture people three-dimensionally (primarily for 3D prints), as well as...

    The present project was about the merging of different areas. There are already solutions today which are able to capture rooms and surroundings. There are also solutions to capture people three-dimensionally (primarily for 3D prints), as well as objects that are captured three-dimensionally. The innovation here was to move from the scan (mostly individual scans or so-called point clouds) to three-dimensional usable models. The innovation here was the creation and adaptation of programming algorithms and processes for the direct implementation of these scans in the VR room. These new algorithms were necessary in order to be able to move freely in this virtual space and still map the rooms and objects realistically and interactively. The movement was implemented using a suitable device so that the movement appears freely in the room (not as with previous solutions in which one is strapped into an apparatus). This innovative approach required the interdisciplinary cooperation of programmers and media specialists so that the scans could be converted into solid VR rooms and objects and the scanned people could be placed in the room as interactively as possible. This was not possible with previous solutions. This solution was developed in cooperation with a company and implemented as an example. A company was selected that had already submitted LOIs in advance. From this, in the course of the project, corresponding publications in well-known conferences and papers were created that highlighted these solutions and discussed further possible applications.

    The project is funded by the State of Lower Austria Department of Economy, Tourism and Technology.

     

    This project is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund

    More information on IWB / EFRE can be found on

    EFRE

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Sustainable biological recycling of environmentally hazardous substances (rare earth elements) from electronic waste and wastewater

    999

    Rare earths are used in electronic devices such as mobile phones, computers and energy-saving bulbs. However, they are scarce and cannot be recycled using eco-friendly methods. Complex and expensive mining, coupled with scarce supply, means that the...

    Rare earths are used in electronic devices such as mobile phones, computers and energy-saving bulbs. However, they are scarce and cannot be recycled using eco-friendly methods. Complex and expensive mining, coupled with scarce supply, means that the prices of rare earths on the world market are rising steadily. Due to continuous technical advances, we can already predict that the supply situation for rare earths will become critical in future, which in turn could pose a threat to the development of innovative technologies.

     

    The project partners aim to counter this trend using a new technology. This involves an approach that has never been used before: recycling by means of microorganisms (bacteria and algae). The goal of the international project partner consortium is to develop a practicable recycling technology in collaboration with regional industry, with a view to reclaiming rare earths from electronic waste and subsequently making the technology available to businesses. The consortium liaises regularly with its strategic partners, which guarantees that market needs and the technological limitations of business are taken into account in the development process.

     

    The project is being funded as part of the EU’s INTERREG V-A Austria-Czech Republic programme.

     

    www.at-cz.eu/reegain

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Synthesis and industrial application of hydroxytyrosol

    898

    During the course of this project, an alternative synthesis of hydroxytyrosol will be developed. This new route aims for a higher yield of the important natural product by combining the advantages of biotechnological procedures and modern chemical...

    During the course of this project, an alternative synthesis of hydroxytyrosol will be developed. This new route aims for a higher yield of the important natural product by combining the advantages of biotechnological procedures and modern chemical reactions. Additionally, in collaboration with our industrial partner, a new and highly promising application of hydroxytyrosol in textile industry will be evaluated.

     

    Summarizing, the following goals can be defined:

    • Establish whole cell oxidation (dihydroxylation of aromatics) as innovative and future-oriented methodology at the University of Applied Sciences Krems. By means of this environmentally benign protocol, fine chemicals and pharmaceuticals are accessible from organic waste.

    • Synthesis of hydroxytyrosol, an important natural antioxidant with a wide range of applications in food industry, cosmetic industry, and pharmaceutical industry.

    • Evaluation of a newly developed analytical instrument to measure the metabolic activity of various bacteria.

    • Development of a new method for the mild and gentle selective bleaching of denim and related textiles.

     

     

    The project is co-financed by the Province of Lower Austria and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    In Vivo RNA interference strategies against adenoviruses

    833

    Patients with an impaired immune system, such as HIV- positive patients and recipients of solid organ and particularly hematopoietic stem cell transplants, are at high risk of life-threatening infections with human adenoviruses. Among stem cell...

    Patients with an impaired immune system, such as HIV- positive patients and recipients of solid organ and particularly hematopoietic stem cell transplants, are at high risk of life-threatening infections with human adenoviruses. Among stem cell transplant recipients with systemic infections, mortality rates of almost 80% have been reported. The efficacy of commonly used drugs to treat adenovirus infections is limited and frequently associated with toxicity. Alternative drugs are still under investigation. In light of the fact that numbers of solid organ and hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients are constantly rising, there is a pressing need for alternative treatment options.

     

    Short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) and artificial microRNAs (amiRNAs) are a class of artificial small RNAs that can bring about the inactivation of cellular and viral genes via the RNA interference (RNAi) pathway. In a previous project led by the investigators, highly potent siRNAs and amiRNAs with activity against components of the adenoviral DNA replication machinery that can effectively inhibit the replication of human adenoviruses in cell culture experiments were developed and characterised. The project is aimed at investigating if adenovirus infections can be inhibited by these RNAi-triggering small RNAs in vivo.

     

    The project is funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Viral and fungal infections

    884

    The world-class standard of medical care in Austria means that many patients are now surviving in areas where previously treatments did not exist or were not widely available. This is thanks in no small part to developments in intensive care and...

    The world-class standard of medical care in Austria means that many patients are now surviving in areas where previously treatments did not exist or were not widely available. This is thanks in no small part to developments in intensive care and transplantation. But one consequence, in particular of the advances in transplantation, has been a steep rise in the number of immune-deficient patients with a considerably increased risk of otherwise harmless infectious diseases, such as infections with adenoviruses. These types of infections can prove fatal for people in this patient group. While bacterial infections can for the most part be effectively controlled using antibiotics, treatment options for viral infections are unsatisfactory, and the persistently high mortality rate is clear evidence of the need for action in this area. It is no longer the original illnesses that are responsible for the death of immune-deficient patients, but rather the infections described above. We must therefore accelerate development in this area and find ways to identify new drug targets.

     

     

    The aim of this research project is the systematic and scientific development of potential drug targets in the setting of infections in immune-deficient patients. The analysis of data obtained from in vitro models will afford new insights into the interplay between adenoviruses and human cells, which could lay the groundwork for further studies and the development of more effective therapies.

     

    The project is funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under the sixth call for the “Aufbau” line of the COIN.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    RNA Interference as a method to inhibit virus infections

    807

    Patients with an impaired immune system such as HIV-positive individuals or solid organ and particularly hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients are at high risk of undergoing life-threatening infections with human adenoviruses. The efficacy of...

    Patients with an impaired immune system such as HIV-positive individuals or solid organ and particularly hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients are at high risk of undergoing life-threatening infections with human adenoviruses. The efficacy of commonly used drugs to treat adenovirus infections is limited and frequently associated with toxicity. Alternative drugs are still under investigation. Hence, given the fact that numbers of solid organ and hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients are constantly rising, alternative treatment options are highly needed.

     

    Short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) and artificial microRNAs (amiRNAs) are a class of artificial small RNAs that can bring about the inactivation of cellular and viral genes via the RNA interference (RNAi) pathway. In a previous project led by Dr. Reinhard Klein highly potent siRNAs and amiRNAs with activity against components of the adenoviral DNA replication machinery that can effectively inhibit the replication of human adenoviruses in cell culture experiments were developed and characterized.

     

    The project is aimed at investigating if adenovirus infections can be inhibited by these RNAi-triggering small RNAs in vivo, and which of the two approaches (i.e. siRNA versus amiRNA) is more effective. RNAi-based inhibition of adenoviruses is assessed in the Syrian hamster model which is able to mimic adenovirus infections in immunodeficient humans. Moreover, one of the two small RNA-based approaches is anticipated to lead to the selective amplification of the RNAi-triggering RNAs in adenovirus-infected cells and their transfer to neighbouring cells where they are supposed to inhibit the otherwise uncontrolled multiplication of spreading adenoviruses.

     

    The project is funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Metabolic plasma profiling of the metabolic syndrome and cancer cachexia

    445

    Abdominal obesity together with insulin resistance, dyslipidaemia and hypertension are hallmarks of the metabolic syndrome (MeS). Furthermore, this disease is also characterized by a low-grade-inflammatory status of adipose tissue causing changes in...

    Abdominal obesity together with insulin resistance, dyslipidaemia and hypertension are hallmarks of the metabolic syndrome (MeS). Furthermore, this disease is also characterized by a low-grade-inflammatory status of adipose tissue causing changes in lipid metabolism of adipocytes by misbalancing uptake, deposition and release of lipids and free fatty acids (FFAs). Markers for abnormal lipid metabolism and inflammation are also found to be elevated in patients suffering from cancer cachexia (CaC). We suppose that pathological alterations of the lipid metabolism are main contributors in MeS and CaC. Therefore, we hypothesize that metabolic signatures comprising lipid, eicosanoid and cytokine patterns are reflecting disease states and disease progression and can help to monitor the impact of clinical interventions. In this study, a comprehensive plasma profiling will be applied to characterize the lipid, eicosanoid and cytokine patterns of patients suffering from MeS and CaC. The goal of the project is to identify metabolic signatures indicative for the onset and progression of the diseases and for determining the therapeutic efficacy of clinical interventions. The Karl Landsteiner Private University of Health Sciences holds the lead of the project. Additional partners are the University of Vienna and Medical Universities of Vienna and Graz.

     

    The project was funded by the Niederösterreichische Forschungs- und Bildungsges.m.b.H. (NFB).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Testing of recombinant polyclonal antibody fragments against gluten peptides

    805

    Testing the recombinant avian polyclonal antibody fragments against gluten peptides that are produced and made available. These antibodies will be investigated using in vitro test systems (cell culture, intestinal epithelial cells) for their...

    Testing the recombinant avian polyclonal antibody fragments against gluten peptides that are produced and made available. These antibodies will be investigated using in vitro test systems (cell culture, intestinal epithelial cells) for their potential to inhibit inflammatory reactions in the intestinal epithelium caused by gluten peptides.

     

    The project was funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under its basic programme.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    The role of NRF2 in melanoma progression - insights into the mechanism of

    431

    Melanoma is one of the most frequent tumours in young adults. Even though it only accounts for 4% of all cases of skin cancer, melanoma is responsible for 79% of all skin cancer-related deaths. Despite the progress that has been made in the treatment...

    Melanoma is one of the most frequent tumours in young adults. Even though it only accounts for 4% of all cases of skin cancer, melanoma is responsible for 79% of all skin cancer-related deaths. Despite the progress that has been made in the treatment of melanoma (e.g. with BRAF inhibitors), patients finally succumb due to resistance mechanisms acquired by the tumour. Many lines of evidence have shown that especially a metastatic melanoma exhibits a strong metabolic turnover, which is required to fuel cell proliferation and anabolic pathways. This increased cellular turnover also results in an increased demand to maintain the redox homeostasis. Here we propose analysing this high metabolic and therefore also ROS (reactive oxygen species) generating stress as a possible Achilles heel of melanoma. One of the major regulators of stress response in cancer is NRF2. It plays a central role in the protection of cells against oxidative and xenobiotic stresses.

     

    The inhibition of NRF2 or its target genes might re-establish the sensitivity of melanoma to apoptosis driven by ROS. This mechanism could also prevent resistance mechanisms frequently observed in metastatic melanoma and may eliminate the frequently observed activation of endothelial cells, which surround tumour cells. It is highly likely that a combination of state of the art melanoma treatment with compounds that inhibit the generation of ROS scavengers potentiates the effectiveness of the current treatment regiments. Here we will use CRISPR-based methods as well as pharmacological inhibition to elucidate the mechanistic role of NRF2 in melanoma cells and on endothelial cells. We will also Transfer knowledge gained from our model by closely cooperating with clinicians who routinely care for melanoma patients. We propose that eliminating the antioxidative response by suppressing NRF2 directly, or its targets, will be an effective weapon in the battle against metastatic melanoma.

     

    The project is funded by NÖ Forschungs- und Bildungsges.m.b.H (NFB).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Extremophiles

    436

    Extremophilic microorganisms often have special properties and also special metabolic pathways due to the cellular mechanisms necessary for their natural environment. These metabolic pathways include, among other things, the ability to use unusual...

    Extremophilic microorganisms often have special properties and also special metabolic pathways due to the cellular mechanisms necessary for their natural environment. These metabolic pathways include, among other things, the ability to use unusual carbon sources and to produce various end products therefrom. These products are of interest for many applications, including pharmaceutical applications. Products are for example various polyunsaturated fatty acids and also pigments. The cultivation of these organisms is possible with the equipment available at the IMC FH Krems and through international contacts to the TU Bratislava or the Sultan Quaboos University in Oman, there are possibilities to preserve the organisms or to use the methods of analysis and to bring them to Krems in the long term. Identified substances can then be tested for bioactivity using the cellular test systems developed in-house.

     

    The project is funded by the Province Lower Austria (Department Science and Research) under the technology fund programme ATHENOE.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    DNA methylation in non-small call lung cancer and associated genderspecific influences on therapy efficience

    437

    Lung cancer is characterised by genderspecific differences in carcinogenesis, prevalence

    and types of mutations as well as response to targeted therapies. The impact of a patient's

    gender on the tumor's DNA methylation pattern and on the efficiency...

    Lung cancer is characterised by genderspecific differences in carcinogenesis, prevalence

    and types of mutations as well as response to targeted therapies. The impact of a patient's

    gender on the tumor's DNA methylation pattern and on the efficiency of latest epigenetic

    therapies is still unknown and thus the research topic of this project.

     

    The Project is funded by FFG Talente - 4th Call FEMtech Research Projects.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Engineering of therapeutic Peptides for cancer and regenerative medicine

    461

    Proteins and peptides are key molecules in all biological processes. Their unique chemical properties make them particularly well suited for use as therapeutic agents. They have high biological activity and specificity with comparably few toxic side...

    Proteins and peptides are key molecules in all biological processes. Their unique chemical properties make them particularly well suited for use as therapeutic agents. They have high biological activity and specificity with comparably few toxic side effects, and can be used to produce a range of highly diversified compounds that are not subject to intellectual property restrictions. The market for synthetic therapeutic peptides is growing steadily, making it an increasingly attractive area for pharmaceutical companies.

     

    The research project’s specific focus was the development of peptides and antibodies that modulate the activity of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs, e.g. epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and AXL). The work was performed in close cooperation with the Paracelsus Medical University Salzburg. In many cancers, the RTK signaling pathways are fundamental for proliferation, survival, angiogenesis and metastasis of cancer cells. Hence, inhibition of particular RTK pathways can induce apoptosis or senescence in the tumor cells. In addition, peptide or antibody mediated activation of RTKs could be beneficial for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. This project has fostered the development of sustainable and cost-effective technologies for biopharmaceutical drug discovery, therapeutic apheresis, toxin neutralization and tissue engineering.

     

    The project was funded by the Niederösterreichische Forschungs- und Bildungsges.m.b.H. (NFB).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Co-cultivation of microorganisms

    454

    Fermentation is an increasingly important area of the pharma- ceutical industry. Until now, academic research and industry have focused mainly on monocultures. However, it has been observed that many microorganisms only realise their full biochemical...

    Fermentation is an increasingly important area of the pharma- ceutical industry. Until now, academic research and industry have focused mainly on monocultures. However, it has been observed that many microorganisms only realise their full biochemical potential in tandem with others. As a result, co- cultivation has become a key pharmaceutical research Topic in the field of biotechnology.

     

    Research in this area concentrates on identifying potential co-cultures and establishing a fermentation process that harnesses the products and capabilities of microbial communities for drug discovery and industrial applications.

     

    The project represented an initial feasibility study of whether it is possible to identify conditions under which two selected microorganisms can grow separately from one another, and also of whether a stable co-culture can subsequently be established. The co-cultures were then analysed in terms of their ability to produce new substances.

     

    The project was funded by the Province of Lower Austria and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Establishing molecular toxicology for rapid, early and sensitive toxicity determination and biocompatibility

    458

    The goal of the project is to combine a method comprising both cellular reporter assays and gene expression studies into a sensitive method. This would make it possible to show toxicological effects on human cells at significantly reduced...

    The goal of the project is to combine a method comprising both cellular reporter assays and gene expression studies into a sensitive method. This would make it possible to show toxicological effects on human cells at significantly reduced concentrations. If established successfully, the combined method could make a contribution to risk minimisation for newly developed biotech products and could also lead to an innovative screening procedure for the detection of toxic environmental pollutants not detectable using current analytical methods. The technology developed will be made available to biotech companies in Lower Austria in partnership projects.

     

    The project was financed by the Science and Research Department of the Province of Lower Austria.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Developing a design Pipeline for innovative protein-protein interaction inhibitors

    459

    The functioning of living organisms is to a large extent dependent on the interplay between the biomolecules they are composed of. Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) are a basic mechanism that regulates this interplay. Consequently, in the past few...

    The functioning of living organisms is to a large extent dependent on the interplay between the biomolecules they are composed of. Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) are a basic mechanism that regulates this interplay. Consequently, in the past few years the search for active compounds that have a therapeutic influence on protein-protein interactions has been intensified. In most cases these compounds are inhibitors of these interactions.

     

    The aim of the project was to use a bacterial enzyme system in order to develop a prototypical workflow for the generation of hit structures for inhibition of protein-protein interactions (PPIs). Starting from the ACP/ACPS-system of Staphylococcus aureus peptides were identified that inhibit the ACP-ACPS-interaction. Peptide-ACP-interactions as well as ACPS-ACP-interactions were analyzed by NMR experiments. The insights obtained, together with structural information from available X-ray structures, led to the development of pharmacophore models that were used in virtual screening to identify potential small molecules PPI inhibitors.

     

    The project was funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under the 15th call for the BRIDGE 1 programme line.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Metastasising melanoma specific antibodies (MEMESA)

    457

    Melanoma is the most aggressive form of skin cancer. If metastasis occurs, currently only about 10% of patients with the disease respond to standard treatment. This situation can be improved if patients at risk of metastasis are identified early, and...

    Melanoma is the most aggressive form of skin cancer. If metastasis occurs, currently only about 10% of patients with the disease respond to standard treatment. This situation can be improved if patients at risk of metastasis are identified early, and if patients in which metastasis has already occurred undergo targeted treatment. In this project we describe the generation of new types of antibodies that can identify metastasis-specific antigens in a targeted manner, and which are being tested for suitability for diagnosis. The strength of our approach lies in the combined use of completed preclinical studies, established cell culture methods and in vivo models, as well as the antibody production expertise of Sciotec Diagnostic Technologies GmbH.

     

    The Project under the consortial leadership of the Medical University of Vienna was funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under the BRIDGE programme.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Development of complex extracorporeal carcinoma models for the identification of personalised Cancer therapies

    455

    Intensive research into the molecular causes of cancer has led to the development of a range of innovative and targeted therapies which are used to selectively inactivate the molecular mechanisms responsible for tumour progression and the growth of...

    Intensive research into the molecular causes of cancer has led to the development of a range of innovative and targeted therapies which are used to selectively inactivate the molecular mechanisms responsible for tumour progression and the growth of cancer cells. These therapies can inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells and induce programmed cell death (apoptosis). They are not effective in all cancer patients due to the genetic heterogeneity of tumours. Personalised oncology aims to establish a direct link between tumour cell genotypes and sensitivity to bioactive substances, so that the patient first and foremost receives the targeted therapy with the maximum clinical benefit.

     

    In the project an experimental approach is being developed to complement diagnostic biomarker studies. We plan to develop organotypic cancer models that enable the direct testing of the clinical efficacy of cancer therapies in cell and tissue cultures (in vitro). A large number of potential cancer therapies, which are often combinations of targeted drugs and conventional chemotherapeutic agents, could

    be quickly tested for their clinical efficacy on a personalised Basis.

     

    The project is funded by Niederösterreichische Forschungs- und Bildungsges.m.b.H. (NFB).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    AdsorbTech: Development of a new techology platform for peptid-based therapeutic aphereses systems

    385

    The aim of this project was the setup of a new technology platform in Lower Austria to make possible further developements and production of peptid-based adsorber in a quick, standardized and efficient way. Thus the aphereses could be established as...

    The aim of this project was the setup of a new technology platform in Lower Austria to make possible further developements and production of peptid-based adsorber in a quick, standardized and efficient way. Thus the aphereses could be established as an effective therapy against autoimmune disorders and sepsis in hospitals.

     

    The project was funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under the call of the Bridge Programme line.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Developing new immunoregulatory peptides and gender specific organotypic cell models for human sepsis

    456

    Sepsis is one of the most frequent causes of death worldwide, including in Austria and Germany. Depending on the stage of the illness, between 25% and 60% of patients die despite receiving the maximum available treatment. In cases of sepsis, the...

    Sepsis is one of the most frequent causes of death worldwide, including in Austria and Germany. Depending on the stage of the illness, between 25% and 60% of patients die despite receiving the maximum available treatment. In cases of sepsis, the human immune system produces a hyperinflammatory response to an infection that has entered the blood stream, and this overreaction can lead to cardiovascular failure. This hyperinflammation is followed by immunosuppression – an attempt initiated by the immune system itself to counter this overreaction. Due to the reduced attentiveness of the immune system, many patients die from serious secondary infections during this phase. Owing to the complex progression of the disease, available sepsis therapies focus predominantly on tackling symptoms and are unfortunately ineffective in many cases.

     

    Peptides that modulate immune responses are currently regarded as promising new drug candidates for the treatment of sepsis. In this project, we aimed to develop and test new peptides that neutralise TRAIL/TNFSF10, one of the key immune regulators. Animal studies had suggested that inactivation of TRAIL/TNFSF10 is likely to reduce morbidity and mortality among patients suffering from sepsis. In addition, a gender- and cell-culture-based model for human sepsis was created, meaning that gender-specific differences (e. g. hormone status) could be taken into account when developing and validating potential new sepsis therapies.

     

    The project was funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under the first call for FEMtech research projects

    in 2011.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Development of new methods for improving oncological immunotherapy procedures

    377

    For many cancer patients, conventional forms of chemotherapy are only partially successful due to their unspecific mode of action and their toxic side-effects. Innovative cell biological procedures involving the activation of tumour-specific T cells...

    For many cancer patients, conventional forms of chemotherapy are only partially successful due to their unspecific mode of action and their toxic side-effects. Innovative cell biological procedures involving the activation of tumour-specific T cells using dendritic cell therapy are possible alternatives. Dendritic cells are loaded or activated with tumour-associated antigens (RNA or proteins/peptides). The cells are then returned to the cancer patients in order to achieve in vivo a strong stimulation of tumour-specific cytotoxic and helper T cells, which attack and destroy the tumour. In a project conducted in collaboration with Life Research Technologies (LRT) GmbH, we have improved existing experimental strategies as well as developed new methods for the detection and quantification of the activity profiles of immune cells, in parallel with clinical studies.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Functional validation of predictive biomarkers for targeted cancer therapies

    398

    The genomic revolution has boosted the development of novel cancer therapeutics targeting critical oncogenic signaling molecules. The therapeutic agents often inactivate protein kinases resulting in growth arrest and death of cancer cells. However,...

    The genomic revolution has boosted the development of novel cancer therapeutics targeting critical oncogenic signaling molecules. The therapeutic agents often inactivate protein kinases resulting in growth arrest and death of cancer cells. However, clinical benefit is limited to subpopulations of cancer patients. Personalized cancer medicine seeks to identify the genetic factors (biomarkers) that influence drug sensitivity. The genetic characterization of tumors will be instrumental for the individualization of treatments and for successful patient outcome and minimization of drug toxicity.

     

    In the present project, we developed standardized diagnostic procedures that allow the detection of genetic biomarkers that can predict clinical drug response in cancer patients. The clinical relevance and the predictive value of the biomarkers have been partially validated in a retrospective clinical study focusing on breast cancer. The work required an interdisciplinary and multi-institutional collaboration between clinics, diagnostic centers and universities in Lower Austria, Tyrol, and Vienna. Genetic testing of cancer patients prior to therapy will increase the drug efficacy, safety, and cost-effectiveness of clinical treatments in cancer.

     

    The project was funded by the Niederösterreichische Forschungs- und Bildungsges.m.b.H. (NFB).

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Establishing innovative, vascular equivalents for the development of detection modules for high-throughput screening and for the development of anti-inflammatory peptides

    383

    Peptides are isolated using phage display against TNF alpha and TNFR2, and then tested for anti-inflammatory properties in the planned vascular models. The vascular models should be suitable for high-throughput screening (HTS) and provide a basis for...

    Peptides are isolated using phage display against TNF alpha and TNFR2, and then tested for anti-inflammatory properties in the planned vascular models. The vascular models should be suitable for high-throughput screening (HTS) and provide a basis for the development of specialist detection modules by Beckman Coulter. Further tests on the isolated peptides were carried out by the industry partner. The data from the project will be used for the construction of prototype modules for the HTS market, and the peptides produced by the screening are expected to be further commercialised in follow-up projects.

     

    The project was funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under the BRIDGE programme.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Development of innovative human tumour mimetics for the screening of bioactive agents

    386

    Cancer-related morbidity and mortality represent a huge social and economic problem worldwide. Despite significant public and private investment in cancer research, there have still been no major advances in the treatment of most types of cancer....

    Cancer-related morbidity and mortality represent a huge social and economic problem worldwide. Despite significant public and private investment in cancer research, there have still been no major advances in the treatment of most types of cancer. Success in the selection of anti-carcinogenic substances (agents) using high-throughput screening (HTS) has been very modest, due to the limited physiological relevance of the cancer models and cellular assays used up to now.

     

    In this project, we developed innovative cell biological procedures which will help to create new generations of cancer models. A range of methods to generate three-dimensional (3D) cultures were developed. These 3D models included spheroids, heterotypic co-cultures and reporter cell lines. Using the models, it was possible to partially reconstruct the pathophysiological state of a tumour in vitro. In the course of several test series, it was shown that the standardized screening of agents was possible using the new 3D cell cultures.

     

    The project was funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency under the “Aufbau” funding line of the COIN – Cooperation and Innovation programme.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Biopharm - Isolation of bioactive compounds from cyanobacteria

    387

    The pharmaceutical industry is increasingly focusing its attention on the wide variety of natural substances developed in the form of secondary metabolites in microorganisms. Marine algae in particular contain a significant, untapped resource in the...

    The pharmaceutical industry is increasingly focusing its attention on the wide variety of natural substances developed in the form of secondary metabolites in microorganisms. Marine algae in particular contain a significant, untapped resource in the shape of chemical structures with the potential to play a major part in the development of innovative medications.

     

    The project examined potential applications of constituents of blue-green algae in medical research on the treatment of chronic inflammations and cancer.

     

    The project involved purification of secondary metabolites from cyanobacteria using state-of-the-art chromatography processes and characterisation by means of mass spectrometry. The different fractions were then examined using human cell-culture models to identify their impact on inflammation processes and on cancer.

     

    The project was co-financed by the European Union through the European Regional Development Fund.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    Cell-based test systems for bioactive substances

    412

    In the development phase of optimised cell-based test systems, new active substances were identified and one of the identified peptides was also mechanistically characterised. The substances bring about increased sodium uptake and oedema resorption...

    In the development phase of optimised cell-based test systems, new active substances were identified and one of the identified peptides was also mechanistically characterised. The substances bring about increased sodium uptake and oedema resorption in the lungs. Drugs currently available for the treatment of pulmonary oedema have many negative side effects, especially in the case of patients with heart disease. In collaboration with industry partners, the extent to which the substances maintain the integrity of endothelial and epithelium monolayers was tested, as well as the extent to which they were suitable for treatments of diseases of the lungs and sepsis. Additionally, a method of rapidly and reproducibly distinguishing between metastasising and non-metastasising cancer cells was developed by means of the optimised use of ECIS and confocal laser scanning microscopy.

     

    The project was funded by the FH Plus initiative under the COIN programme.

  • Department of Science & Technology
    life-sciences

    FLEXCRASH - Flexible and hybrid manufacturing of green aluminum to produce tailored adaptive crash-tolerant structures

    1618

    Flexcrash is an EU HORIZON project that aims to design a flexible and hybrid manufacturing technology for creating crash resistance structures made of aluminum alloys that are safer and lighter than the ones currently in use.

     

    These structures will...

    Flexcrash is an EU HORIZON project that aims to design a flexible and hybrid manufacturing technology for creating crash resistance structures made of aluminum alloys that are safer and lighter than the ones currently in use.

     

    These structures will allow active safety, i.e., they will dynamically adapt to face an imminent crash. Furthermore, their design optimally accounts for collision parameters from future mixed traffic scenarios that involve human drivers and self-driving cars.

     

    Our Role: As IMC Krems, our contribution is two-fold and leverages our expertise in the automated generation of critical traffic scenarios. On the one hand, we will identify relevant future mixed traffic scenarios; on the other hand, we will simulate car crash accidents of variable severity to find the most critical collision parameters.

     

    The Consortium: FLEXCRASH features a ten-partner consortium that includes two universities (Luleå Tekniska Universitet, SE; IMC University of Applied Sciences, AT), three technology centers (Eurecat, ES; Fraunhofer IWS, DE; Virtual Vehicle Research, AT), three industrial partners (Gestamp, ES; Gemmate Technology, IT; Aerobase Innovation, SE), an industrial research center (Centro Ricerche Fiat, IT) and a standardization entity (Asociacion Española de Normalizacion, ES).

     

    Web and Social Media:

    EU-CORIS

    @Flexcrash_EU

     

    Tags: #Flexcrash #FlexcrashProject #FlexcrashEU