Strong presence of CRC1279 at the Spring meeting of the German Society for Virology (GfV)

A record number of junior scientists from the Institute of Molecular Virology, many members of CRC1279, presented their data at the 2024 GfV spring meeting in Vienna. We like to congratulate Dr. Rayhane Nchioua, Susanne Klute, Alexandre Laliberté as well as Helene Hönigsperger for their outstanding oral presentations, covering topics from novel systems to detect HIV-1 restriction factors to using virus-derived peptides for anti-inflammatory therapy. We also congratulate Jun. Prof. Konstantin Sparrer on receiving the Loeffler-Frosch Prize for his excellent studies on the molecular mechanisms of innate immune responses.

While our innate immune system protects us against viral pathogens its chronic activation may cause auto-inflammatory diseases and contributes to the development of AIDS and Long-COVID. Understanding aberrant innate immune activity, has been the focus of two recent cooperative studies of Konstantin`s team (Acharya et al, Cell, 2022; Hirschenberger et al, Nature Communications, 2023). The first changed the dogma that the presence of viral nucleic acids is sufficient to induce an effective immune reaction and revealed that R12C dependent disturbances of the cytoskeleton are also required. The second demonstrated that the transport protein ARF1 is needed for proper termination of interferon signaling. Ultimately, these findings may help to improve the treatment of inflammatory diseases.

Dr. Konstantin Sparrer