- Keywords: RNA viruses, reverse genetics, virus evolution, antivirals
Group is actively engaged in research focused on two main directions: yeast dsRNA viruses: cloning, curing, reconstruction, evolution and ecology and nucleoside/nucleotide based antivirals for retroviruses.
Research group activities
Yeast dsRNA viruses: cloning, curing, reconstruction, evolution and ecology.
Genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic consequences of dsRNA viruses on host cell are interpreted as model framework to establish universal mechanisms behind any virus of interest, so creating a paradigm network for virus-host interactions. Totiviridae family viruses from yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and closely related yeast are being investigated by means of modern molecular biology techniques, involving advanced level manipulations on genomic material, its cloning, sequencing and further comparative analysis. We aim at understanding of intra- and extracellular relations of yeast dsRNA viruses in order to elucidate evolutionary pathways of these viruses and uncover principles of distribution within an ecosystem.
Nucleoside/nucleotide based antivirals for retroviruses.
Nucleoside/nucleotide based antivirals constitute an essence of modern high efficacy antiretroviral (HIV, for instance) treatment. While being a game-changer treatment upon discovery, nowadays it suffers from emerging resistance and multiple side effects due to life-long administration. Recently, innovative and more advanced measures against genuine retroviral replication enzymes have been proposed and substantiated. The aim of our research is to develop compounds active at level of catalytic cycle of retroviral replication enzymes, linking an exclusive spe-cificity and efficacy into binding approach.
We are looking for:
- Collaboration calls for basic and applied research in area of RNA virus research, namely cloning of viral genomic RNA, virus promoter discovery and related analysis.
- Partnership for participation in ERC, HORIZON 2020 and other programs in field of molecular virology and related disciplines.
- Internships for training in the following areas: advanced bacterial and yeast gene engineering, protein purification and enzymology assays; analysis of DNA/RNA biosynthesis at single nucleotide resolution; labeling and visualization of specific RNA in vitro and in situ.
Meet our team
Prof. Dr. Saulius Serva
Group participates in a number of collaborations, both at leading or partnership roles in diverse programs: National Research Programme, Global Grants, Researcher Teams’ and Challenge Ideas.
- Algirdas Mikalkėnas, Bazilė Ravoitytė, Daiva Tauraitė, Elena Servienė, Rolandas Meškys & Saulius Serva (2018) Conjugation of phosphonoacetic acid to nucleobase promotes a mechanism-based inhibition, Journal of Enzyme Inhibition and Medicinal Chemistry, 33:1, 384-389.
- Grybchuk D, Akopyants NS, Kostygov AY, Konovalovas A, Lye LF, Dobson DE, Zangger H, Fasel N, Butenko A, Frolov AO, Votýpka J, d’Avila-Levy CM, Kulich P, Moravcová J, Plevka P, Rogozin IB, Serva S, Lukeš J, Beverley SM, Yurchenko V. Viral discovery and diversity in trypanosomatid protozoa with a focus on relatives of the human parasite Leishmania. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2018 Jan 16; 115(3):E506-E515.
- Lukša J, Ravoitytė B, Konovalovas A, Aitmanaitė L, Butenko A, Yurchenko V, Serva S, Servienė E. Different Metabolic Pathways Are Involved in Response of Saccharomyces cerevisiae to L-A and M Viruses. Toxins (Basel). 2017 Jul 25;9(8).
- Konovalovas A, Servienė E, Serva S. (2016) Genome sequence of Saccharomyces cerevisiae double-stranded RNA virus L-A- 28. Genome Announc. 4(3):e00549-16.
- Serva, S., Lagunavičius, A. Direct conjugation of peptides and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine in DNA. Bioconjugate Chem. 2015, 26, 1008−1012.
Prof. Dr. Saulius Serva
Life Sciences Center
Institute of Biosciences
Phone: +370 5 239 8244
More about the center: http://gmc.vu.lt/en
Department for Research and Innovation
Phone: +370 5 268 7006
More information: https://www.vu.lt/verslui/
Flyer for printing: Labaratory_of_Nucleic_Acid_Biochemistry.pdf