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Michael F. JantschName & Address
Michael F. JantschProfessor of Cell and Developmental Biology
Current Position: Group Leader Department of Cell and Developmental Biology
Medical University of Vienna, Department of Cell and Developmental Biology, Center for Anatomy and Cell Biology
Schwarzspanierstrasse 17; A-1090 - Vienna, Austria
Phone:  +43-1-40160 37510 FAX:  +43-1-40160-37542
e-mail:                            ORCID: 0000-0003-1747-0853

Main Research Interests
We study the mechanisms and consequences of post-transcriptional RNA modifications, with a special focus on those mediated by adenosine deaminases that act on RNA (ADARs). These enzymes deaminate adenosines to inosines in structured regions of RNAs. Inosines, in turn, are recognized as guanosines during translation, splicing, or folding. Consequently ADAR-mediated deaminations can alter the coding potential, splice patter, or turnover of RNAs. More than a million deamination editing sites are known in the human transcriptome. Mice lacking ADAR1 die prematurely and mutations in human ADAR1 are associated with Aicardi Goutières syndrome a severe interferonopathy. ADAR1 deficiency in mice can be rescued by deletions of viral RNA sensors MDA5 or MAVS. It thus appears that another function of Inosines in endogenous RNAs is to distinguish self- from non-self RNAs.
A particular editing event in the Filamin A protein leads to a Q to R amino acid exchange in the encoded protein. Mice in which this amino acid exchange is inhibited show a high susceptibility to develop genetically or chemically induced colitis.
Therefore, in our work we aim at understanding why lack of filamin editing promotes colitis. We also want to decipher the particular RNAs and sensing mechanisms that  lead to elevated interferon signaling in the absence of ADARs.

Scientific Education & Career History
since 2015         Full Professor for Cell- and Developmental Biology, Medical University of Vienna
2001-2015         Associate Professor, University of Vienna
2001                  Habilitation in Genetics (assoc. Prof), University of Vienna
1993-2001         Assistant Prof. Dept. of Cell Biology and Genetics University of Vienna
1989-1993         Post Doc, Carnegie Institution of Washington, Baltimore, MD
1988                  PhD in Biology, Univ Vienna
1987                  Short term fellowship to the Medical University of Lübeck, Germany,
1982-1988         Studies of Biology, University of Vienna

Experience in Scientific Management and Organization & Student Supervision
Since 1993        Supervision and training of 15 Diploma (M.Sc.), 22 PhD students, and 3 Post Docs
Awards and fellowships won by lab members: Incoming Postdoctoral fellowship: INDICAR EU cofund (2 x);  DFG (German Research Society)(1x)
PhD fellowships: DOC - Austrian Academy of Sciences 1x; Best dissertation award (1x)
2005-2007         Member of the study section Biology
2005-2015         Department Head, Chromosome Biology, University of Vienna
2013                  Vice chair of the Gordon Research Conference on RNA editing and modification
2015- date         Full Professor and Head of Unit, Medical University of Vienna
Since 2015        Head of Unit for Anatomy and Cell Biology, Medical University of Vienna
Since 2017        Member of the curricular committee for medical studies
2015-2019         Speaker and Coordinater of the Special Research Program “Regulatory RNAs”
2014-2019         Member of the Doctoral Program “RNA Biology”
2014-date          Editorial board, RNA-Biology
2015                  Chair of the Gordon Research Conference on RNA editing and modification
2017                  Session chair “RNA modification” at the annual RNA society meeting

Supervision of Doctoral (PhD) Thesis Students (past five years – 22 since 1994)
Aamira Tariq - PhD Student 2007-2012 
“A screen for inhibitors and activators of RNA editing”
Silpi Banerjee - PhD Student 2011-2014                
“Nuclear import of a double stranded RNA binding domain”
Mansoureh Tajaddod - PhD Student 2011-2015
“Impact of SINES on gene expression”
Cornelia Vesely - PhD Student 2009-2013             
“Impact of ADAR proteins on microRNA abundance and sequence”
Maja Stulic  - PhD Student 2012-2016   
“Functional consequences of Filamin A pre-mRNA editing”
Utkarsh Kapoor - PhD Student 2015-ongoing        
“The interplay of RNA editing and splicing”
Prajakta Bajad - PhD student 2015-ongoing           
“RNAs triggering inflammation in ADAR deficiency”

Invited Conference Presentations (5 recent selected)

  • 2017- Invited speaker at the GRC on RNA editing, Ventura, CA, USA
  • 2016 – “The epitranscriptome” EMBO conference, EMBL
  • 2016 – Nucleic acids and immunity Brno, Czech republic
  • 2015 - Speaker at the Dept. of Biochemistry, Cambridge UK
  • 2013 - Plenary speaker at the GRC on RNA editing, Galveston, USA

Honors & Awards
1987                Austrian Ministry of Science Fellowship to Lübeck
1989-1992       Erwin Schrödinger Fellow of the Austrian Science Foundation FWF
1999               Novartis Prize for Biology, Novartis (Sandoz) Austria

Member of Reviewing Panels, Editorial Boards, Scientific Organizations (5 selected)
•      Regular reviewing for Science, Nature, Cell, Nat. Struct. Mol. Biol., EMBO J, Cell Rep., EMBO Rep., Nucl. Acids. Res., RNA, RNA Biol., Wellcome Trust, Swiss National Fund, European Research Council, DFG, Israeli Science Foundation
•      Editorial Board member of RNA Biology

  • ASCB member, RNA society member
  • COST participant

Most Important Research Funding (selection of past 5 years)

  • 2017 – 2021, MOBILIS FWF/ANR - 220 k€
  • 2016 – 2019, FWF SFB43 RNA-REG (MFJ coordination) 620 k€
  • 2017 – 2020, FWF – participation in doctoral program RNA Biology (FWF) 110 k€
  • 2014 – 2017, FWF Impact of editing on splicing 342 k€
  • 2014 – 2017, FWF Impact of splicing on editing 320 k€

Key International Collaborators (selection of 5 with joint publications since 2012)

  • Marie Öhman                  Stockholm University, SE
  • Mary O Connell              Ceitec, Brno, CZE        
  • Frederic Allain                ETH Zürich, CHE          
  • K V Prasanth                  University of Illinois, USA
  • Erez Levanon                 Bar Ilan University, ISR