Current projects




Study and modification of properties of spider protein overexpressed in Escherichia coli

Project objectives: 1) to establish controllable “bottom-up” self-assembly of spider protein; and 2) to engineer spider-amyloid based nanocomposites for biomedical and biotechnological applications.  The project is result of a collaboration with the group of RNDr. Ing. Katarína Šipošová, PhD. from Slovak Academy of Sciences.
Principal investigator: doc. RNDr. Erik Sedlák, DrSc.
Period: 2022-2025




Modification of catalytic properties of haloalkane dehalogenases by protein evolution methods

Project objectives: To develop stable HLDs analogues, characterized by catalytic properties suitable for biotechnological applications by the method of directed evolution of proteins – ribosome display.
Principal investigator: doc. RNDr. Erik Sedlák, DrSc.
Period: 2022-2024




Development of efficient genetically encoded photosensitizers
Project objective: The principal goal of this project is to develop a molecular method by which we will be able to transform unrelated flavoproteins into efficient photosensitizers producing singlet oxygen with a high quantum yield.
Principal Investigator: doc. RNDr. Erik Sedlák, DrSc.
Period: 2021–2025



Fostering high scientific quality in protein science in Eastern Slovakia (CasProt)

Project objective: The main goal of the project is to increase the scientific capacity and grow the research potential of UPJŠ in Košice in the field of protein sciences. Its implementation will take 3 years. Top research teams of partner entities of the Technical University of Munich and the University of Zurich participate in the project. This project will lead to the development of technologies and the increase of the innovation potential of UPJŠ in Košice with the expected impact not only on eastern Slovakia but also on the whole country.
The results of the research will provide an understanding of the molecular basis of the regulation of GPCR function, as well as the improvement of a rational approach to the targeted development of new drugs. The project also significantly supports young scientists in the development of skills in the field of interdisciplinary biosciences, and one of the ambitions of the project is also to attract back experienced Slovak scientists working abroad for a long time. It is expected that the results of the project will lead to the creation of a patent and start-up company as well as to contacts with major industrial companies.




Aggregation of immunoglobulins and prediction of their colloidal stability using advanced kinetic analysis
Project objective: Stability of immunoglobulins G (IgGs) is one of the most critical properties affecting the success of the clinical application of immunotherapeutics. Obtaining correct parameters which describe the stability and aggregation of IgG is certainly a very ambitious goal mostly due to the complexity of their structures. In this project, our group will develop a biophysical model, which will be based on the analysis of IgG inactivation kinetics and microcalorimetry at elevated temperatures.
Principal Investigator: RNDr. Gabriel Žoldák, PhD.
Period: 2019–2022



Understanding IgG inactivation mechanism using single Hsp70 chaperone molecules and laser optical tweezers (Hsp70sensor)
Project objective: Structural and biochemical complexity of IgGs, as well as unclear inactivation mechanism, provide a significant hurdle for their accelerated development and their use in the clinical applications. In particular, the major concern during early stages of research and development is a natural tendency of antibodies to lose their efficacy by unproductive protein-protein association, which is likely triggered by the local unfolding of certain critical parts of the IgG structure. In this project we will develop a new sensor based on the Hsp70 chaperone with functionality that enable monitoring the generation of the aggregation-prone states of IgG and its fragments.
Principal Investigator: RNDr. Gabriel Žoldák, PhD.
Period: 2019–2023

Completed projects


Time-resolved imaging of oxygen consumption in cancer cells during photo-dynamic therapy
Project objective: The main aim of this project is focused on implementation of time-resolved measurements for the analysis of metabolic processes during photo-dynamic therapy (PDT) of cancerous diseases. The motivation and aims are built on expertise and scientific skills of the team members achieved in the field of time-resolved microscopy and spectroscopy and new approaches for image processing (bootstrap and statistical morphology). The particular aims of this project are: a) to characterize Stern-Volmer calibration curves of PpIX and RuPhen in the solution by time-resolved methods, b) to follow subcellular distribution of PpIX and RuPhen after PDT and to define the therapeutical protocol, c) to construct oxygenation maps of PDT treated cancer cells by PpIX or RuPhen calibration curves and PpIX or RuPhen luminescence lifetimes detected in live cells. We will use a unique set-up for fluorescence and phosphorescence lifetime measurements in real time available at CIB and KBF at UPJŠ in Košice: FLIM/PLIM microscopy system.
Principal Investigator: RNDr. Veronika Huntošová, PhD.
Period: 2018-2020



Towards highly seletive cancer treatment: Endogenous lipoprotein-DARPin complexes as a new generation of targeted drug delivery vehicles (DARLINK)
Project objective: The ultimate goal of the project is to develop a new generation of drug vehicles (DARLINK(s)) with a high payload capacity showing a strong potential for high affinity binding to specific receptors on tumor cells. DARLINK can be tailored for mutated cancer cell receptors of individual patients and thus contribute to personalized treatment of cancer.
Principal Investigator: prof. RNDr. Pavol Miškovský, DrSc.
Period: 2016–2020



Conversion of integral membrane protein into water soluble form: the case of GPCR
Project objective: The principal goal of this project is to provide „proof of principle“ about possibility to transform of integral membrane protein into its water-soluble analogue. Successful reaching of this goal will provide information and tools for the modification of solubility also others, not only membrane, proteins.
Principal Investigator: doc. RNDr. Erik Sedlák, PhD.
Period: 2016–2020                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Final evaluation: excellent results



The project 7FP EU (REGPOT)  „Fostering Excellence in Multiscale Cell Imaging“ (CELIM) is designed to energize the research potential of the University of P. J. Safarik in Kosice, Slovakia, by the enhancement of the existing network of collaborators with the selected excellent European Partners, centered around the theme of cell imaging, by the acquisition of a new technical infrastructure, and by the reintegration of highly experienced Slovak scientists contemporary working abroad.



Euro‐BioImaging is a large‐scale pan‐European research infrastructure project on the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) Roadmap. Preparatory Phase of the project lasted from Dec 2010 to May 2014 and was funded by the EC. Euro-BioImaging is now in the interim phase, with representatives of 12 countries and EMBL as international organisation working together towards the implementation of the infrastructure.