News

2017-11-24
Nobel Prize Laureate will deliver a lecture at Vilnius University Life Sciences ...

On 1 of December Nobel Prize Laureate in Economic Sciences Robert J. Shiller will deliver a lecture at Vilnius University Life Sciences Center. The topic of the open lecture-discussion: “Will Economy Survive 4th Industrial Revolution: Infinite Energy From Fusion, Eternal Life From Gene Editing, and Infinite Wisdom From Artificial Intelligence”. R. J. Shiller is one of the most influential present-day world economists with Lithuanian roots. The lecture will start at 14.00 in the room R106 (Grand Auditorium).    

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2017-11-24
The review by our scientist was chosen as a cover topic of “Nature Reviews Neuro...

One of the leading magazines of neurosciences “Nature Reviews Neuroscience” published a review written by our scientist PhD Urtė Neniškytė and her colleague from EMBL PhD Cornelius T. Gross. Their article “Errant gardeners: glial-cell-dependent synaptic pruning and neurodevelopmental disorders” was chosen as a cover topic. The abstract of the article:The final stage of brain development is associated with the generation and maturation of neuronal synapses. However, the same period is also associated with a peak in synapse elimination - a process known as synaptic pruning - that has been proposed to be crucial for the maturation of remaining synaptic connections. Recent studies have pointed to a key role for glial cells in synaptic pruning in various parts of the nervous system and have identified a set of critical signalling pathways between glia and neurons. At the same time, brain imaging and post-mortem anatomical studies suggest that insufficient or excessive synaptic pruning may underlie several neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism, schizophrenia and epilepsy. Here, we review current data on the cellular, physiological and molecular mechanisms of glial-cell-dependent synaptic pruning and outline their potential contribution to neurodevelopmental disorders.

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2017-11-24
National Career Week started at Vilnius University Life Sciences Center

On 20 of November, 2017 5th National Career Week was opened at Vilnius University Life Sciences Center. It was led by a five days’ conference; each day was dedicated to a specific topic that helped pupils from Lithuania choose a profession. The first day was called “I will be__a scientist”. Five representatives from this field presented science in a comprehensible and attractive way. Three of them work at our Center. We would like to present them. A neuroscientist PhD Urtė Neniškytė was awarded L'Oréal-UNESCO Baltic For Women in Science Fellowship this year. She obtained her PhD at the University of Cambridge (UK) in molecular developmental neuroscience and is currently investigating molecular mechanisms that guide synaptic pruning in the developing brain during brain circuit maturation. Professor Saulius Klimašauskas is the director of the Institute of Biotechnology. He is the member of EMBO, The Royal Society of Chemistry, Epigenetics Society, International Union of Crystallography, American Chemical Society and many other organizations. A young scientist, bioengineer Karolis Leonavičius moved to Lithuania from Oxford University. He is currently working on the creation of molecular analysis and medical tools and is one of the initiators of life sciences community “Vita Scientia”.

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2017-11-24
Vilnius University Life Sciences Center was visited by the officer from European...

On 20 of November, 2017 Vilnius University Life Sciences Center was visited by the delegation that consisted of Jean-David Malo, Director for Open Innovation and Open Science from Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, European Commission, also representatives from the Ministry of Education and Science, Lithuania, and Vilnius University vice-rector professor Rimantas Jankauskas. The honourable guests had a presentation about our Center made by the director PhD Gintaras Valinčius, they were also shown some of the student’s laboratories as well as the laboratory of PhD Linas Mažutis where he develops microtechnologies. Finally, the delegation met professor Virginijus Šikšnys, who is one of our the most prominent scientist, awarded such prizes as Novozymes Prize, Warren Alpert and many more national prizes.

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2017-11-24
The best in the world: Vilnius university students conquered teams from Harvard...

"Vilnius-Lithuania iGEM” team won the largest, most prestigious, international Synthetic Biology competition iGEM.  Vilnius University students bested more than 300 teams from leading world universities. The team won the Grand Prize and received a gold medal as well as three special awards: for Best New Basic Part, Best New Composite Part and Best Part Collection.   iGEM (International Genetically Engineered Machine) is a yearly competition. It is the largest synthetic-biology competition in the world, where students work all year long to solve real-world challenges by building genetically engineered biological systems with standard, interchangeable parts.   This year “Vilnius-Lithuania iGEM” team focused on plasmids: round-shaped DNA structures, which can transfer genetic information and change cell’s function. Therefore, plasmids are widely used in biotechnology. Vilnius university students created SynORI: a framework designed to make working with single and multi-plasmid systems precise, easy and more functional on top of that. This system created and developed by team membbers will help with everyday lab work and it can also be used for biological computing, assembly of large protein complexes or metabolic engineering.   “This is a huge achievement for Lithuania. We surpassed students from the best universities in the world – Harvard, Cambridge, Oxford, Heidelberg, etc. Lithuania will be a serious player in the world of synthetic biology. We hope that this victory will help attract larger investments in science sector in Lithuania. SynORI might become the very first synthetic biology start-up in our country”, the team said.   “We received support from all the iGEM teams and after seeing how interested several large synthetic biology companies were in our project, we hope to continue to work on it. SynORI is relevant and important for further development of synthetic biology”, team leader Gabrielius Jakutis said.   As always, “Vilnius-Lithuania iGEM” team was sponsored by Thermo Fisher Scientific, a biotechnology product development company. They supplied the students with all the lab equipment and reagents necessary for their work, helped them with their scientific research and also covered all travelling expenses. This year “Vilnius-Lithuania iGEM” was also sponsored by Interlux and Biotecha, modern companies working with pharmaceutical technologies and solutions for biotechnology, medicine and science industry. Students worked in the laboratories of Vilnius University Life Sciences Center. They...

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