Supervisors from International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology in Warsaw



Bujnicki is a professor of biology and heads a research group at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB), which combines bioinformatics and structural biology, and focuses on RNA sequence-structure-function relationships. His scientific achievements include the development of methods for computational modeling of protein and RNA 3D structures and discovery and characterization of enzymes involved in post-transcriptional modification of RNA. He has received an ERC Starting Grant, as well as multiple awards. He has been elected as a member of the Polish Academy of Sciences, European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO), and Academia Europaea. He has graduated from the Leadership Academy for Poland. He has authored > 300 publications, cited >10,000 times. He is also active as a science advisor, for instance he has been a member of the European Commission’s Group of Chief Scientific Advisors and of the Advisory Group on Preventing, Counteracting and Combating COVID-19 to the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education.

Currently, the Bujnicki group focuses on experimental determination and theoretical analyses of RNA structures, using cryo-EM, X-ray crystallography, SAXS, chemical probing, and computational modeling with the use of experimental restraints. Recently, they have been involved in the structure determination of the entire 30,000 nt RNA genome of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.


Research interests:

Combination of theory and experiment, integration of different types of experimental data, RNA structure, RNA modification, molecular design, molecular simulations, scientific uncertainties, communication of science.


Major publications:

Manfredonia et al. (2020). “Genome-wide mapping of therapeutically-relevant SARS-CoV-2 RNA structures”, bioRxiv.

Boniecki M.J. et al. (2016). “SimRNA: a coarse-grained method for RNA folding simulations and 3D structure prediction”, Nucleic Acids Res.

Smietanski M. et al.  (2014).  “Structural analysis of human 2′-O-ribose methyltransferases involved in mRNA cap structure formation”, Nature Commun.

Patents: Example patent: Bujnicki et al., dsRNA endoribonucleases, WO/2012/169917.



Prof. Andrzej Dziembowski (born 1974) is a molecular biologist, biochemist, and geneticist. He earned his undergraduate degree and doctorate at the Faculty of Biology at the University of Warsaw, where he continues to lecture. For several years he worked at the CNRS Molecular Genetics Centre in Gif-sur-Yvette, France, then he led an independent lab at the Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw. Since 2019 he  Dziembowski is an ERA Chairs group leader at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB) in Warsaw. He has published scientific articles in prestigious journals of molecular biology, including Nature, Cell, Nature Structural and Molecular Biology, Nature Communications, Genes and Development, Molecular Cell, EMBO Journal and EMBO Reports.

The research of Andrzej Dziembowski’s group focuses on post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression in metazoa. To provide deeper insight into the processes analyzed, functional studies on transgenic animal models (mouse and C. elegans) are combined with modern transcriptomic approaches with biochemical experiments.


Research interests:

RNA Biology, genomics, mouse genetics.


Major publications:

Warkocki Z., Krawczyk P.S., Adamska D., Bijata K., Garcia-Perez J.L., Dziembowski A. (2018). “Uridylation by TUT4/7 Restricts Retrotransposition of Human LINE-1s”, Cell. ;174(6):1537-1548.e29. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2018.07.022.

Dhir A., Dhir S., Borowski L.S., Jimenez L., Teitell M., Rötig A., Crow Y.J., Rice G.I., Duffy D., Tamby C., Nojima T., Munnich A., Schiff M., de Almeida C.R., Rehwinkel J., Dziembowski A., Szczesny R.J., Proudfoot N.J. (2018). “Mitochondrial double-stranded RNA triggers antiviral signalling in humans”, Nature. 560(7717):238-242. doi: 10.1038/s41586-018-0363-0.

Mroczek S., Chlebowska J., Kuliński T.M., Gewartowska O., Gruchota J., Cysewski D., Liudkovska V., Borsuk E., Nowis D., Dziembowski A. (2017). “The non-canonical poly(A) polymerase FAM46C acts as an onco-suppressor in multiple myeloma”, Nat Commun. 8(1):619. doi: 10.1038/s41467-017-00578-5.

Mroczek S., Krwawicz J., Kutner J., Lazniewski M., Kuciński I., Ginalski K., Dziembowski A. (2012).  “C16orf57, a gene mutated in poikiloderma with neutropenia, encodes a putative phosphodiesterase responsible for the U6 snRNA 3' end modification”, Genes Dev. 26(17):1911-25. doi: 10.1101/gad.193169.112.


Jacek Jaworski is a professor and deputy director for research at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB) in Warsaw, where he leads the Laboratory of Molecular and Cellular Neurobiology. He started his career at the Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology where, in 2001, he completed his PhD under the supervision of Prof. Leszek Kaczmarek. Next he moved to the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT where he studied molecular mechanisms of neuronal development and neuronal structural plasticity. His most important discovery from this time concerns the first demonstration of the role of mTOR kinase in neuronal development. Subsequently, the research of his team at IIMCB has concentrated on molecular mechanisms responsible for proper neuronal morphology with a particular focus on mTOR-controlled cellular processes. In his recent work Prof. Jaworski also investigates how those processes contribute to neurodevelopmental pathology (e.g. epilepsy and tuberous sclerosis).


Research interests:

Neurodevelopment, neuronal morphology, cellular signaling, brain disease.


Major publications:

Kedra M., Banasiak K., Kisielewska K., Wolinska-Niziol L., Jaworski J., Zmorzynska J. (2020). “TrkB hyperactivity contributes to brain dysconnectivity, epileptogenesis, and anxiety in zebrafish model of Tuberous Sclerosis Complex”, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U S A., 117(4):2170-2179.

Malik A.R., Liszewska E., Skalecka A., Urbanska M., Iyer AM., Swiech LJ., Perycz M., Parobczak K., Pietruszka P., Zarebska M.M., Macias M., Kotulska K., Borkowska J., Grajkowska W., Tyburczy M.E., Jozwiak S., Kwiatkowski DJ., Aronica E., Jaworski J. (2015). “Tuberous sclerosis complex neuropathology requires glutamate-cysteine ligase”, Acta Neuropathol. Commun., 3(1): 48.

Urbanska M., Gozdz A., Swiech LJ., Jaworski J. (2012). “Mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (MTORC1) and 2 (MTORC2) control the dendritic arbor morphology of hippocampal neurons”, J. Biol. Chem., 287: 30240-56.

Swiech L., Blazejczyk M., Urbanska M., Pietruszka P., Dortland B., Malik A., Wulf P., Hoogenraad C.C., Jaworski J. (2011). “CLIP-170 and IQGAP1 cooperatively regulate dendrite morphology”, J Neurosci., 31:4555-4568.

Jaworski J., Kapitein L.C., Montenegro Gouveia S., Dortland B.R., Wulf P.S., Grigoriev I., Camera P., Spangler S.A., di Stefano P., Demmers J., Krugers H., Defilippi P., Akhmanova A., Hoogenraad C.C. (2009). “Dynamic microtubules regulate dendritic spine morphology and synaptic plasticity”, Neuron, 61:85-100.

Jaworski J., Spangler S., Seeburg D.P., Hoogenraad C.C., Sheng M. (2005). “Control of dendritic arborization by the PI3-kinase – Akt - mTOR pathway”, J. Neurosci. 25: 11300-11312.


Jacek Kuznicki is head of the Laboratory of Neurodegeneration at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB). He is an ordinary member of the Polish Academy of Sciences and is a member of the Polish National Science Centre’s Council (2018-2022). He served as director of IIMCB in 2000-2018. Degrees: full professor (1993); DSc (habilitation) (1987) and PhD (1980) at the Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology PAS in Warsaw; MSc in biochemistry (1976) in the Faculty of Biology, Warsaw University. Postdoc fellowship: NIH, Bethesda, MD, USA (1981-1984); visiting professor: NIMH, Bethesda (1992-1995), Leiden University (2014), University of Cambridge (2015), NICHD, Bethesda (2018); head of the Calcium Binding Proteins Laboratory, Nencki Institute (1996-2002); organizer and director of the Polish Centenarians Program (1999-2001). Laureate of many awards and honors, including the Officers and Knight’s Crosses of the Order of Polonia Restituta awarded by the President of the Republic of Poland (2008 and 1998), member of national and international organizations and societies. Leader of research projects, i.e., in H2020 WIDESPREAD-ERA Chairs: MOSaIC, FP7: FishMed, HEALTH-PROT, COMBIOM, ERA-NET NEURON - NeuConnect, ERA-NET RUS - TargetSOCE, in FP6: PROMEMORIA, APOPIS, and in FP5: Director of Centre of Excellence in Molecular Biomedicine. He has supervised 16 PhD theses. He has co-authored over 174 publications in journals on the JCR list, with H-index=40, as well as 3 patents and 1 patent application.

Research interests:

Molecular neurobiology, Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases, calcium homeostasis, aging and longevity.

Major publications:

Wasilewska I., Gupta R.K., Wojtas B., Palchevska O., Kuznicki J. (2020). “stim2b Knockout Induces Hyperactivity and Susceptibility to Seizures in Zebrafish Larvae”, Cells. 2020;9(5):E1285. doi:10.3390/cells9051285.

Dey K., Bazala M.A., Kuznicki J. (2020). “Targeting mitochondrial calcium pathways as a potential treatment against Parkinson's disease”, Cell Calcium.;89:102216. doi:10.1016/j.ceca.2020.102216.

Majewski L., Maciąg F., Boguszewski P.M., Kuznicki J. (2020). “Transgenic Mice Overexpressing Human STIM2 and ORAI1 in Neurons Exhibit Changes in Behavior and Calcium Homeostasis but Show No Signs of Neurodegeneration”, Int J Mol Sci.;21(3). pii: E842. doi: 10.3390/ijms21030842.

Gruszczynska-Biegala J., Strucinska K., Maciag F., Majewski L., Sladowska M., Kuznicki J. (2020). “STIM Protein-NMDA2 Receptor Interaction Decreases NMDA-Dependent Calcium Levels in Cortical Neurons”, Cells.;9(1). pii: E160. doi: 10.3390/cells9010160.

Patents: Patent 2013 (WO 2013/139929 A1) “Novel means and methods for treating diseases
of the central nervous system, metabolic and cardiac diseases and aging”, inventors: Honarnejad K. (DE), Daschner A. (DE), J. Herms (DE), Bracher F. (DE), Kuznicki J. (PL), Gehring A.P. (DE). The invention is a result of Polish-German grant with J. Herms.

@ Miaczynska Lab

Marta Miączyńska is a molecular cell biologist. She earned her PhD from the University of Vienna and did postdoctoral work at EMBL Heidelberg and MPI-CBG Dresden. Since 2005 she heads the Laboratory of Cell Biology at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB) and since December 2018 is the Director of IIMCB.

Her research focuses on molecular mechanisms integrating endocytic trafficking and intracellular signal transduction in health and disease, with emphasis on cancer cell biology. She discovered a distinct population of early endosomes in the cell, so called APPL endosomes. Together with her group, she characterized novel functions of endocytic proteins in the regulation of signal transduction and transcription, as well as the role of endosomes as signaling platforms for receptors of growth factors and cytokines. She has co-authored over 50 publications cited more than 2700 times. She is a frequently invited speaker at international conferences and scientific institutions, and holds numerous prestigious scholarships, national and international grants. She is a reviewer and panel member for grant agencies including the ERC, a member of various advisory bodies, the supervisor of 7 defended doctoral theses, and a member of the Polish Academy of Sciences, European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) and Academia Europaea.


Research interests:

Cell biology, membrane trafficking, endocytosis, signal transduction, inflammatory signaling, molecular oncology.


Major publications:

Szymańska M., Nowak P., Kolmus K., Cybulska M., Goryca K., Derezińska-Wołek M., Szumera-Ciećkiewicz A., Brewińska-Olchowik M., Grochowska A., Piwocka K., Prochorec-Sobieszek M., Mikula M.,  Miączyńska M. (2020). “Synthetic lethality between VPS4A and VPS4B triggers an inflammatory response in colorectal cancer”, EMBO Mol Med. Jan 13:e10812.

Mamińska A., Bartosik A., Banach-Orłowska M., Pilecka I., Jastrzębski K., Zdżalik-Bielecka D., Castanon I., Poulain M., Neyen C., Wolińska-Nizioł L., Toruń A., Szymańska E., Kowalczyk A., Piwocka K., Simonsen A., Stenmark H., Fürthauer M., González-Gaitán M., Miaczynska M. (2016). “ESCRT proteins restrict constitutive NF-κB signaling by trafficking cytokine receptors”, Sci Signal. 9, ra8.

Miaczynska M. (2013). “Effects of membrane trafficking on signaling by receptor tyrosine kinases”, Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Biology, 5(11):a009035.

Miaczynska M., Christoforidis S., Giner A., Shevchenko A., Uttenweiler-Joseph S., Habermann B., Wilm M., Parton R.G., Zerial M. (2004)“APPL proteins link Rab5 to signal transduction via an endosomal compartment”, Cell, 116, 445-456.

@  iron-homeostasis-mleczko-sanecka-laboratory#tab1

Katarzyna Mleczko-Sanecka carried out her doctoral and post-doctoral research in the laboratory jointly led by Martina Muckenthaler and Matthias Hentze, affiliated at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) and the University of Heidelberg. The main objective of her work was to gain new insights into the genetic control of iron homeostasis. To this end, she designed and conducted large-scale RNAi screens to systematically characterize regulators of hepcidin, the key iron-regulatory hormone. This work identified SMAD7 as an important hepcidin inhibitor and linked hepcidin control to proliferative signaling. In her further work, she also identified commonly used pharmaceuticals as hepcidin-modifying drugs. In 2017, she established her laboratory at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB) – the Laboratory of Iron Homeostasis. Her group combines mechanistic cell-based studies (involving loss-of-function CRISPR knock-outs) with work on mouse models (using advanced flow cytometry, FACS and ‘omics’ approaches) to identify new molecular mechanisms involved in the maintenance of systemic iron balance. Specifically, the interests of the lab focus on ‘iron sensing’ in the liver, the control of iron deposition in hepatocytes, and on iron recycling by macrophages.


Research interests:

Iron homeostasis, hepatocytes, iron-recycling macrophages, liver endothelial cells.

Major publications:

Mleczko-Sanecka K., da Silva A.R., Call D., Neves J., Schmeer N., Damm G., Seehofer D., Muckenthaler M.U., (2017). “Imatinib and spironolactone suppress hepcidin expression”, Haematologica; 102(7):1173-84.

Mleczko-Sanecka K., Roche F., da Silva A.R., Call D., D’Alessio F., Ragab A., Lapinski P.E., Ummanni R., Korf U., Oakes C., Damm G., D’Alessandro L.A., Klingmüller U., King P.D., Boutros M., Hentze M.W., Muckenthaler M.U., (2014). “Unbiased RNAi screen for hepcidin regulators links hepcidin suppression to proliferative Ras/RAF and nutrient-dependent mTOR signaling”, Blood, 123(10):1574-85 (Article with a Comment: Arosio P. New signaling pathways for hepcidin regulation. Blood, 2014; 123(10):1433-4).

Mleczko-Sanecka K., Casanovas G., Ragab A., Breitkopf K., Muller A., Boutros M., Dooley S., Hentze M.W., Muckenthaler M.U., (2010). “SMAD7 controls iron metabolism as a potent inhibitor of hepcidin expression”, Blood, 115(13):2657-65.


Marcin Nowotny graduated from the Chemistry Faculty of the  University of Warsaw and obtained his PhD from the Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology PAS. He was a postdoctoral fellow in the group of Wei Yang at the National Institutes of Health. Since 2008 he has been a group leader at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB). He is a recipient of an ERC Starter/Consolidator Grant, HHMI International Early Career Scientist Award and Welcome Trust International Senior Fellowship (twice) and well as NCN MAESTRO and FNP TEAM grants.


Research interests:

DNA repair, reverse transcription, RNA processing, X-ray crystallography, cryo-EM.


Major publications:

Górecka K.M., et al. (2019). Nat Commun.10(1):4102.

Razew M., et al. (2018). Nat Commun. 9(1):97.

Nowak E., et al. (2014). Nat Struct Mol Biol.  21(4):389-96.

Jaciuk M.,et al. (2011). Nat Struct Mol Biol. 18(2):191-7.

Rychlik M.P., et al. (2010). Mol Cell. 40(4):658-70.


Wojciech Pokrzywa received his PhD from the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium, and next spent an 8-year postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Cologne, Germany. In 2017, he became head of the Laboratory of Protein Metabolism in Development and Aging at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB) in Warsaw, Poland.

Research interests:

Proteostasis, protein turnover, stress adaptation, aging, C. elegans.

Major publications:

Heterotypic assembly mechanism regulates CHIP E3 ligase activity
Das, A., Thapa, P., Santiago, U., Shanmugam, N., Banasiak, K., Dabrowska, K., Nolte, H., Szulc, N. A., Gathungu, R. M., Cysewski, D., Krueger, M., Dadlez, M., Nowotny, M., Camacho, C. J., Hoppe, T., & Pokrzywa, W.*
doi: 10.1101/2021.08.20.457118

Nutritional status and fecundity are synchronised by muscular exopheresis
Turek, M., Banasiak, K., Piechota, M., Shanmugam, N., Macias, M., Śliwińska, M. A., Niklewicz, M., Kowalski, K., Nowak, N., Chacinska, A., & Pokrzywa, W.*
EMBO reports
doi: 10.15252/embr.202052071

Maintaining proteostasis under mechanical stress
Höhfeld, J., Benzing, T., Bloch, W., Fürst, D. O., Gehlert, S., Hesse, M., Hoffmann, B., Hoppe, T., Huesgen, P. F., Köhn, M., Kolanus, W., Merkel, R., Niessen, C. M., Pokrzywa, W., Rinschen, M. M., Wachten, D., & Warscheid, B.
EMBO reports
doi: 10.15252/embr.202152507

The dose-dependent pleiotropic effects of the UBB+1 ubiquitin mutant
Banasiak, K., Szulc, N. A., & Pokrzywa, W.*
Frontiers in Molecular Biosciences
doi: 10.3389/fmolb.2021.650730


Gracjan Michlewski obtained his PhD and Habilitation from the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Polish Academy of Sciences in Poznan, Poland. He carried out his postdoctoral research in the Human Genetics Unit, Medical Research Council in Edinburgh. In 2011, Gracjan established his laboratory at The Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, the University of Edinburgh with the Medical Research Council Career Development Award. Currently, he is the head of the Dioscuri Centre for RNA - Protein Interactions in Human Health and Disease at the International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology in Warsaw and a Senior Lecturer (Zhejiang) in Biomedical Sciences at The University of Edinburgh.

The main objective of Gracjan Michlewski’s work is to gain new insight into RNA-protein interactions. He discovered a number of factors and mechanisms that regulate the production of miRNAs (short non-coding RNAs that control gene expression pathways). He also demonstrated that E3 ubiquitin ligase TRIM25 (a key player in the innate immune response to RNA viruses) is a novel RNA-binding protein. These findings have far-reaching consequences for our understanding of how RNA-binding proteins and metabolites regulate gene expression, RNA processing and innate immune response to RNA viruses.


Research interests: 

RNA-protein interactions, microRNA, regulation of gene expression, innate immunity, Parkinson’s disease, viral infection 


Major publications: 

Michlewski, G., & Cáceres, J. F. (2019). Post-transcriptional control of miRNA biogenesis. Rna, 25(1), 1-16. 

Choudhury, N. R., Heikel, G., Trubitsyna, M., Kubik, P., Nowak, J. S., Webb, S., ... & Michlewski, G. (2017). RNA-binding activity of TRIM25 is mediated by its PRY/SPRY domain and is required for ubiquitination. BMC biology, 15(1), 1-20. 

Choudhury, N. R., Nowak, J. S., Zuo, J., Rappsilber, J., Spoel, S. H., & Michlewski, G. (2014). Trim25 is an RNA-specific activator of Lin28a/TuT4-mediated uridylation. Cell reports, 9(4), 1265-1272. 

Choudhury, N. R., de Lima Alves, F., de Andrés-Aguayo, L., Graf, T., Cáceres, J. F., Rappsilber, J., & Michlewski, G. (2013). Tissue-specific control of brain-enriched miR-7 biogenesis. Genes & development, 27(1), 24-38. 

Michlewski, G., Guil, S., Semple, C. A., & Cáceres, J. F. (2008). Posttranscriptional regulation of miRNAs harboring conserved terminal loops. Molecular cell, 32(3), 383-393.