We are pleased to announce the next results of the international CEUS-UNISONO call for bilateral and trilateral research projects carried out by research teams from Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovenia and Poland under the multilateral CEUS programme pursuant to the Lead Agency Procedure (LAP). Prof. dr hab. Janusz Rak from the University of Gdańsk is the third person recommended for funding as a result of merit-based evaluation performed by the Austrian agency Fonds zur Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung (FWF). Professor Rak will receive over 1.6 million PLN for his project “Radiosensitizing derivatives of pyrimidine or purine bases: mass spectrometry and quantum chemistry methods in research on interactions with low-energy electrons in the gas phase, water clusters and solution”.
The project results could be employed in radiotherapy mainly against solid tumors that account for ca. 80% of all cancer cases. Unfortunately, ionizing radiation that destroys cancer cells may also damage healthy tissues surrounding the tumor that are more sensitive to ionizing radiation than the tumor itself which may lead to their cancer transformation. In order to eliminate such situations, chemical substances are used to increase the sensitivity of tumor to ionising radiation (the so-called radiosensitizers, such as native nucleosides which incorporate into genomic DNA). The basic objective of the research project carried out by Professor Rak is to comprehend a relation between the character of dissociative electron attachment (DEA) to MNuc in the gas phase and the mechanism of the degradation of MNuc in water, i.e. in the environment where a potential radiosensitizer should work. Explaining the details of DEA, the influence of water in particular, should allow to optimise the performance of tested compounds, which may result in super-radiosensitizers that ultimately could be employed in the clinic.
Under the CEUS-UNISONO call for proposals, funding may be awarded for remuneration of the research team, scholarships for students and PhD students, purchase or construction of research equipment and other project-related expenses. The call was addressed at Polish research teams that jointly with one (in the case of bilateral cooperation) or two (in the case of trilateral cooperation) partner research teams requested funding of their basic research projects. Projects could have been planned for a period of either 24 or 36 months and in the case of projects carried out jointly with research teams from Austria, also 48 months
All ranking lists that have been published in the CEUS-UNISONO call are available here.