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Poles win EMBO Installation Grants Two new laboratories will be set up at the Polish Academy of Sciences

Dr. Michał Wandel and Dr. Piotr Gerlach have won the EMBO Installation Grants. Thanks to the funding they will be able to establish independent laboratories at the institutes of the Polish Academy of Sciences. The European Molecular Biology Organization awards funding to young scientists carrying out high-quality research.

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The European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) associates more than 1 800 leading researchers. Its goal is to promote excellence in life sciences by supporting talented researchers and stimulating their mobility. The Installation Grants have been awarded to early-stage researchers since 2006. Each year EMBO grantees are chosen on the basis of high-quality research from among six participating Member States, which include: Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Lithuania, Montenegro, Poland, Portugal and Turkey. Grants, amounting to up to EUR 50 000 (PLN 225 000) annually, are awarded for a period of three to five years.

“EMBO is committed to fostering excellence in the life sciences across all of Europe, and beyond. The EMBO Installation Grant program is an instrument to encourage scientists to move or return to the countries participating in it”, said Maria Leptin, director of the European Molecular Biology Organization.

Research on immunity and viruses

Two out of eight laboratories supported by EMBO will be established at institutes of the Polish Academy of Sciences (PAS). They will be founded by Dr. Michał Wandel and Dr. Piotr Gerlach.

Dr. Michał Wandel from MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge will establish a laboratory at the PAS Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics. The new laboratory will conduct project entitled "Intracellular mechanisms of anti-microbial immunity".

Dr. Piotr Gerlach works at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry in Munich. He studies the structure and functioning of proteins involved in RNA metabolism. His laboratory will be set up at the International Institute of Molecular Mechanisms and Machines of the Polish Academy of Sciences, where Dr. Gerlach will develop his project on "Mechanism of the bunyaviral transcription-translation coupling".

New members of the EMBO Young Investigator Network

Grant winners will also become EMBO Young Investigators. This means that they will have multiple networking opportunities, among others to participate in EMBO trainings and conferences. Moreover, they will gain access to core facilities of the Europe’s flagship laboratory for life sciences - the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany.

This year’s grants went to eight scientists representing the following four countries: Lithuania, Poland, Portugal and Turkey. We are happy to inform that as many as three grants will be implemented by Polish scientists. Apart from Dr. Wandel and Dr. Gerlach, Dr. Kinga Kamieniarz-Gdula will also create a new laboratory at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań.

The next application deadline for EMBO Installation Grants is 15 April 2021.

Full list of 2020 EMBO Installation Grant winners is available at the dedicated website.