The Special Research Programmes (SFBs) of the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) are granted to groups of researchers with outstanding international track records. The selection is highly competitive and each year, only a small fraction of applicants is able to obtain an SFB.
SFB grants are usually given for eight years with a benchmark of one million Euro per year. The goal of SFBs is to establish highly productive, interdisciplinary research groups to answer complex research questions.
The SFB “Stem Cell Modulation in Neural Development and Regeneration”, spearheaded by IMBA Scientific Director Jürgen Knoblich, focuses on neuronal stem cells. Also joining forces for this SFB are Noelia Urbán (also IMBA), Elly Tanaka (IMP), Kristin Tessmar, Florian Raible, and Arndt von Haeseler (Max Perutz Labs), as well as scientists from IST Austria and the University of Innsbruck.
The SFB “RNA-DECO: Decorating RNA for a purpose” focuses on RNA research, led by Michael Jantsch from the Medical University of Vienna. IMBA group leader Stefan Ameres will investigate the function of chemical RNA modifications and is joined by Andrea Pauli (IMP) and Javier Martinez (Max Perutz Labs), as well as other experts in the field of RNA research across Austria.
The SFB “Targeted protein degradation – from small molecules to complex organelles” is coordinated by Max Perutz Labs group leader Sascha Martens. This SFB will address the biomedically relevant question of ubiquitin mediated protein degradation with a mechanistic approach. The team also includes Andreas Bachmair, Elif Karagöz, Alwin Köhler, and Gijs Versteeg (also Max Perutz Labs), Noelia Urban (IMBA), Yasin Dagdas (GMI), and Tim Clausen (IMP), as well as researchers from the University of Vienna, CeMM, and the Institute for Molecular Biology in Mainz, Germany.