ICBT/Research/Sensen Team

Sensen Team

Research Goals

Christoph W. Sensen is mainly interested in research topics related to Genome Research and Bioinformatics. Having worked previously in Canada, his group has participated in many large-scale Genome Projects, including recently an Oil Sands Metagenomics Research Program and the PhytoMetaSyn Program, which is related to the study of the Expressed Genes in 75 higher plants.

The Computational Biotechnology group began work in Graz in September 2014. By the end of 2015, all of the Computer Equipment will have been relocated from Calgary, Canada to Graz. The hardware and software environment currently being configured will be one of the most powerful Bioinformatics facilities in Austria.

The Computational Biotechnology Group is conducting research, especially related to the identification of serum-based DNA markers for chronic diseases and the development of rapid and cost-effective screening systems for the presence of particular DNA Sequences in the environment, and is also providing services related to high-throughput Bioinformatics analyses.

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Current Projects

  • DNA-based markers identified from Circulating Nucleic Acids (CNA)

    When animals get infected with diseases like Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy or Bovine Respiratory disease, they start to release exosomes which contain specific DNA molecules into the blood stream. This specific process already starts at early stages of the disease, which makes it a promising candidate for the detection of the disease before any clinical sign could be observed.

    Currently, the diagnostics and monitoring of chronic and infectious diseases in animals and humans is mainly based on the identification of an infective agent. This approach is slowly changing towards the measurement of the reaction of the host to the disease challenge. A new approach is the identification of DNA markers in the serum of diseased production animals (as well as humans), which can be used for the early identification of disease states, ideally before clinical signs emerge.

    This research project is focused on industrial biotechnology enabling (a) the diagnostic of diseases in mammalian systems and (b) developing DNA screening devices for the rapid monitoring of the presence of specific DNA sequences in liquids, especially blood serum, to be used in animal production processes.

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Current Theses

Maximilian Malek
PhD Thesis
Working title: Generating intermediate MRI datasets with applications in vehicle safety

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Industrial collaborations

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Selected Publications

Petra Heidinger Hydrogen-driven cofactor regeneration for stereoselective whole-cell C=C bond reduction in Cupriavidus necator Show publication in PURE
Gerhard Thallinger Myristic acid induces proteomic and secretomic changes associated with steatosis, cytoskeleton remodeling, endoplasmic reticulum stress, protein turnover and exosome release in HepG2 cells Show publication in PURE

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Team Leader

Christoph Wilhelm Sensen
Univ.-Prof. Dipl.-Biol. Dr.rer.nat.

Team Website

For more information visit our team website CBT.