ERC Grant 2021 – 2026

ERC Grant 2021 – 2026

Deciphering the role of RNA modifications during ribosomal decoding and protein synthesis


ERC prestigious grant

Since 2008, the European Research Council (ERC) has been awarding grants for ground-breaking research conducted in the European Union member states and associated countries. The ERC consolidator grant has been addressed to researchers who have obtained their PhD degree 7-12 years ago, have published at least several important papers without the participation of their PhD supervisor and can demonstrate a promising track record of early achievements, such as significant publications in major international peer-reviewed multidisciplinary scientific journals, invited presentations in well-established international conferences, as well as granted patents, awards, or prizes.

In 2020 PhD Sebastian Glatt from the Malopolska Centre of Biotechnology (MCB) of the Jagiellonian University has received  the ERC Consolidator Grant worth almost 2 million euro. The research conducted in the framework of the project will contribute to the better understanding of molecular mechanisms behind the fundamental processes of high clinical relevance, which shape and control the functioning of cellular protein in all living organisms.

The full list of ERC Consolidator Grant recipients is available on the website 

What is the project about?

The ERC co-funds the project entitled „Deciphering the role of RNA modifications during ribosomal decoding and protein synthesis” led by PhD Sebastian Glatt from the JU Małopolska Centre of Biotechnology, who has received 1 997 500,00 euro to carry out studies in this area. The project aims to structurally characterize key RNA modification complexes, create sets of fully modified RNAs in vitro, understand the role of individual rRNA and tRNA modifications during translation elongation, and provide mechanistic insights into the links between patient derived mutations of the underlying pathways and the occurrence of severe human diseases. The author of the project want to extend the recently arising concept of “specialized ribosomes” by adding unique RNA modifications into the overall scheme.

“The project allows us to study the basic functions of cellular mechanisms that regulate the production of all proteins during health and disease. We already know that alterations of these pathways play a key role in the development of cancer and severe neurodegenerative diseases. Therefore, our work in the next years will allow to provide mechanistic insights into the unfortunate link between patient derived mutations of the underlying pathways and the onset of severe human diseases. Ultimately, we hope to deliver new diagnostic and therapeutic tools for currently uncurable diseases. We will take advantage of our long-standing expertise in structural biology and the access to the world class cryo-EM facility in Krakow to achieve our ambitious research goals. Due to the amazing developments at the MCB and Solaris over the last years, we are able to conduct world class science at the Jagiellonian University and compete with other centers of excellence. Even if my name is mentioned at the front, large projects like the ERC grants are never really won by individuals only. Therefore, I would like to thank all my colleagues in Krakow, Poland and the world for their continuous support and great team work,” said PhD Sebastian Glatt.

Team Members

Sebastian Glatt, PhD (Principal Investigator)

Alexander Hammermeister, PhD (Postdoc)

Łukasz Koziej, PhD (Postdoc)

Jakub Nowak, PhD (Postdoc)

Andrzej Chramiec-Głąbik, D.E. (Research Technician)

Igor Kaczmarczyk (PhD student)

Keerthiraju Ethiraju Ravichandran (PhD student)

Mikołaj Sokołowski (PhD student)

Marta Walczak (PhD student)

Magdalena Bożek, MSc (Administrative support)

Magdalena Gaczoł, M.Eng (Administrative support)

Paulina Pytel, MSc (Administrative support)

The attachment of specific chemical groups to individual RNAs introduces novel chemical properties and strongly influences their functionality. Individual ribosomes, mRNAs and tRNAs are dynamically modified depending on cell type and compartment, metabolic state and environmental conditions. This complexity creates specialised translational units and expands the regulatory potential of the core translation machinery. The EU-funded tRNAslation project aims to characterise key RNA modification complexes and understand the role of individual rRNA and tRNA modifications during translation elongation by creating sets of fully modified RNAs in vitro. Ultimately, this might provide mechanistic insight into links between mutations found in patients, the underlying pathways and the onset of severe illnesses.


This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 101001394).

tRNAslation project on the EU CORDIS platform:

Funding agency – ERC:

ERC Consolidator Grant- View News

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