ERASysAPP 2nd Call

In October 29, 2014 the ERA-NET ERASysAPP launched its second joint transnational call on «Further Transfer of Systems Biology Knowledge into Applications» which aims to encourage scientists from the participating countries to collaborate and share resources beyond national boundaries.

The participating countries were Cyprus, Estonia, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, The Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Sweden and Switzerland.

The call focused mainly on microorganisms, plants and/or animals within the area of life sciences and biotechnology (topics on human health and medical research were excluded). For the purpose of this call, nine scientific SB fields were identified:

  • Utilizing enzymatic diversity of organisms from different realms populating different (extreme) habitats
  • Identification and utilization of the metabolic potentials from genomic data-sets
  • Mapping and exploitation of cellular processes and metabolic capacities for bioproduction purposes exploiting SB approaches
  • Recombinant biosynthesis of fine chemical and valuable substances
  • Investigation of regulatory mechanisms in intra- and intercellular processes (e. g. epigenomic, proteomic and population dynamics)
  • Exploration, investigation and usage of new production platforms for biotechnology
  • Efficacy of plant, microorganism and animal primary production
  • Development of new computational methods for SB
  • Development of new methodological approaches for SB

With a submission deadline for proposals on January 14, 2015, 10 eligible proposals involving 48 partners from 7 countries participated were submitted. The proposals were assessed in a one-step peer-review process involving internationally renowned experts. The top 5 proposals comprising more than 25 research groups from 7 countries were chosen to receive funding. Funded projects are expected to start in autumn 2015, according to national regulations.

The projects encompass a broad range of topics. In international collaboration different species of microorganisms should be engineered with the aim to serve as flexible and carbon efficient microbial cell factories. The projects envision e.g.

  • faster discovery of new antibiotics from environmental microbial resources
  • new knowledge on cell-cell communication to regulate root growth under abiotic stress conditions
  • new knowledge on robustness of the engineering principles for metabolism in biotechnological applications
  • development of a strain engineering platform based on a novel approach of proteome optimization

List of funded projects submitted to the 2nd Call

Project Title
Project Coordinator
Shortcut to the carbon efficient microbial production of chemical building blocks from D-xylose
Stephan Noack, Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, Germany
Systematic Rebuilding of Actinomycetes for Natural Product Formation (SYSTERACT)
Alexander Wentzel, SINTEF Materials and Chemistry, Norway
Systems analysis of peptide-mediated cell-cell communication in the plant root by in situ sequencing
Manfred Claassen, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
Optimizing metabolic regulation in yeast production strains for dynamic conditions
Steffen Waldherr, Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany
Systems biology platform for the creation of lean-proteome Escherichia coli strains
Raivo Vilu, Competence Center of Food and Fermentation Technologies, Estonia