Protein Dynamics Centre (PDC)
The Czech-Austrian border region faces the challenge to develop a knowledge intensive economy competitive on global scale, ensuring high-quality jobs and sustainable socio-economic progress. The Protein Dynamics Center (PDC) aims to support this effort by exploring a novel technological pathway strengthening the well-established industries of scientific instrument production (cluster of electron microscope producers in South Moravia, atomic force microscope producers in Upper Austria, Lower Austria and Vienna) and the strategic field of biomedicine and biotechnology in the cross-border region.
For this in the PDC project an original platform combining two high resolution microscopy techniques: (1) high-speed atomic force microscopy (HS-AFM), which enables observation of dynamic phenomena at the protein level and (2) cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM), bringing spatial resolution down to atomistic level. Using advanced simulation methods, data from the two techniques will be combined to elucidate the underlying molecular mechanisms. Detailed understanding of molecular mechanisms will facilitate a completely new approach for the rational design of drugs and enzymes with medical and biotechnological application.
The Czech-Austria cross-border setting provides unique conditions for implementation of the project – CBL has done world-class pioneering work on studying protein dynamics with HS-AFM, while CEITEC MU houses some of the Europe’s top cryo-EM facilities and molecular modelling experts. Such a complementarity is not available anywhere else and the cross-border region will thus get a significant competitive advantage by accommodating globally new technological platform through joint action of CBL and CEITEC MU.