A novel link between metabolism and host defence: O-GlcNAc glycosylation

Research Opportunity
PhD, Masters by Research, Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
Number of Honour Places Available
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute
Primary Supervisor Email Number Webpage
Professor Jose Villadangos j.villadangos@unimelb.edu.au Personal web page
Co-supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr Justine Mintern jmintern@unimelb.edu.au Personal web page

Project Details

O-GlcNAc glycosylation involves addition of a single sugar, β-N-acetylglucosamine, to serine or threonine residues of proteins. It is a unique type of glycosylation found on nuclear and cytoplasmic proteins. The addition and removal of OGlcNAc is catalysed by OGlcNAc transferase (OGT) and OGlcNAse (OGA) respectively. It is a reversible modification akin to phosphorylation. Indeed, OGlcNAc glycosylation occurs in dynamic interplay with phosphorylation, either on the same or adjacent residues. The cross-talk between these two modifications in turn regulates various cellular processes. In this project we will characterise the function of OGlcNAc glycosylation in immune cells by identifying changes in patterns of glycosylation in different metabolic states and upon encounter of pathogens. The function of glycosylated proteins will be further studied to understand the relevance of their OGlcNAc status in various immune cell activities. Finally, we will characterize how OGT and OGA recognize their substrates and the mechanisms that regulate their function. These studies may allow us to design therapeutic drugs that target O-GlcNAc glycosylation to manipulate immune responses against pathogens or cancer.

Faculty Research Themes

Cancer, Infection and Immunology

School Research Themes

Cancer in Biomedicine, Infection & Immunity, Molecular Mechanisms of Disease

Research Opportunities

PhD, Masters by Research, Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
Students who are interested in joining this project will need to consider their elegibility as well as other requirements before contacting the supervisor of this research

Graduate Research application

Honours application

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact a supervisor.


Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Research Group / Unit / Centre

Villadangos laboratory: Antigen presenting cells & molecules that initiate T cell immunity against pathogens and cancer

Research Node

Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute

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