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.

To top

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.

To top

Current Theses

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

To top


Industrial collaborations

To top

Selected Publications

Holly Stolterfoht, Daniel Schwendenwein, Christoph Wilhelm Sensen, Florian Rudroff and Margit Winkler Four distinct types of E.C. enzymes can catalyze the reduction of carboxylic acids to aldehydes Show publication in PURE
Elisa Lanfranchi, Tea Pavkov-Keller, Eva-Maria Koehler, Matthias Diepold, Kerstin Steiner, Barbara Darnhofer, J├╝rgen Hartler, Tom Van Den Bergh, Henk Jan Joosten, Mandana Gruber-Khadjawi, Gerhard Thallinger, Ruth Birner-Gruenberger, Karl Gruber, Margit Winkler and Anton Glieder ENZYME DISCOVERY BEYOND HOMOLOGY: A UNIQUE HYDROXYNITRILE LYASE IN THE BET V1 SUPERFAMILY Show publication in PURE
Martin Grube, Tomislav Cernava, J. Soh, S. Fuchs, Ines Aschenbrenner, C. Lassek, U Wegener, K Riedel, Christoph Wilhelm Sensen and Gabriele Berg Exploring functional contexts of symbiotic sustain within lichen-associated bacteria by comparative omics Show publication in PURE

To top

Team Leader

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

Team Website

For more information visit our team website CBT.