History of the Department and presentation of the research profile

The Department of Analytical Biochemistry was established in 2000, after a fusion of the Laboratory of Enzymology and the Laboratory of Physical Biochemistry of the Department of Animal Biochemistry (head: prof. Zdzisław Żak). The Department was created in the structure of the Institute of Molecular Biology (of those days) by the Rector of the Jagiellonian University,  prof. Franciszek Ziejka. Prof. Adam Dubin was the first head of the Department and fulfilled this role in 2000-2003 and 2008-2015, until retirement. Presently, the head of the Department is prof. Andrzej Kozik, who fulfilled this role also previously, in the years 2003-2008. The Department of Analytical Biochemistry comprises two Laboratories: of Enzymology and Protein Chemistry (head: dr. Paweł Mak) and of Physical Biochemistry (head: prof. Andrzej Kozik). The present staff of the Department counts together ten employees. They publish on average 10 scientific papers per year while on the field of didactics conducts 19 courses in biochemistry, biotechnology, protein chemistry and instrumental analysis. On average, the Department acquires 10% of the total financial scientific expenditures of the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology (both as nominal founds as well as the number of research grants).

The present profile of scientific research conducted in the Department comprise:
• biochemical and structural characterisation of bacterial virulence factors, mainly proteolytic enzymes from S. aureus,
• biochemical and structural characterisation of protein natural inhibitors of bacterial peptidases,
• antibacterial peptides, bacteriocins and hemolysins: isolation, purification, amino acid sequence and biochemical characterisation,
• studies on hemocidins – antibacterial peptide fragments of hemoglobin,
• modifications of the structure and functions of proteins during the inflammation,
• macromolecular interactions in the kinin-generating systems and their modifications in the inflammatory foci,
• biochemistry of oxidative stress,
• biochemistry of vitamins and coenzymes,
• structural and enzymatic characterization of proteins engaged in thiamine biosynthesis processes in plants, bacteria and yeast,
• influence of bacterial and fungal infections on the activity and functions of kinin-generating system and blood coagulation cascade,
• expression of kinin receptors genes in the regulation of inflammation,
• biochemical applications of biologically active substances immobilized on conventional carriers and on nanoparticles.

The most principal research technique exploited in the Department is the liquid chromatography, in the low-, middle- and high-pressure (HPLC) variants. The Department has also a versatile laboratory background for protein chemistry, for electrophoretic analyses (1D, 2D and IEF), for research concerning studies of protein-protein interactions (Biacore), for spectroscopic measurements (UV/VIS, fluorescence and dynamic light scattering), for bacteria and cell culture and for molecular biology. The laboratory is also equipped with ESI high-capacity ion trap mass spectrometer and with unique in Poland automatic chemical (Edman degradation) protein sequencer.