Head of laboratory

Technician and administration staff

Asset 1 v.biernat@nencki.edu.pl
Asset 1 j.jakubczyk@nencki.edu.pl

PhD Students


Research profile

The laboratory is focused on cellular calcium handling and bioenergetics of mammalian cells under normal and pathological conditions. In particular, we are interested in:

  • effects of mutation in the dystrophin gene on calcium signaling, intracellular calcium homeostasis and energy metabolism in muscle and non-muscle cells derived from mdx mice (animal model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy)
  • response of human endothelial cells to various stress-inducing stimuli such as: inflammation, insulin resistance, genotoxicity etc. with special emphasis on mitochondrial metabolism and function
  • characterization of cellular bioenergetics in various cells with mutations within mitochondrial or nuclear DNA, affecting mitochondrial and extramitochondrial metabolic pathways

Current research activities

  • biochemical and molecular mechanisms responsible for impaired calcium metabolism in undifferentiated myoblasts derived from mdx mice. The role of P2Y and P2X receptors in abnormal calcium homeostasis in dystrophic muscle cells is the current topic of our investigation. In our study we are using both immortalized cell lines (myoblasts and myotubes) and primary myoblasts derived from mdx mice.
  • study of TNFα and insulin resistance in human vascular endothelial cells. The role of  nicotinamide N-methyltransferase and mitochondrial mechanisms in a cellular response to these stimuli. Cellular bioenergetics, oxidative stress, nitric oxide synthesis and mitochondrial biogenesis are of particular interest.
  • study on calcium homeostasis and the role of annexins in endothelial cells with induced insulin resistance.

Selected publications

Mebarek S., Abousalham A., Magne D., Do L.D., Bandorowicz-Pikula J., Pikula S., Buchet R. (2013) Phospholipases of mineralization competent cells and matrix vesicles: roles in physiological and pathological mineralizations. Int J Mol Sci, 14: 5036-5129.

Dymkowska D., Drabarek B., Podszywałow-Bartnicka P., Szczepanowska J., Zabłocki K. (2014) Hyperglycaemia modifies energy metabolism and reactive oxygen species formation in endothelial cells in vitro. Arch Biochem Biophys, 542: 7-13.

Krasowska E., Zabłocki K., Górecki D.C., Swinny J.D. (2014) Aberrant Location of Inhibitory Synaptic Marker Proteins in the Hippocampus of Dystrophin-Deficient Mice: Implications for Cognitive Impairment in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. PLoS ONE, 9(9): e108364.

Onopiuk M., Brutkowski W., Young C., Krasowska E., Róg J., Ritso M., Wojciechowska S., Arkle S., Zabłocki K., Górecki D.C. (2015) Store-operated calcium entry contributes to abnormal Ca2+ signaling in dystrophic mdx mouse myoblasts. Arch Biochem Biophys, 569: 1-9.

Woś M., Szczepanowska J., Pikuła S., Tylki-Szymanska A., Zabłocki K., Bandorowicz-Pikuła J. (2016) Mitochondrial dysfunction in fibroblasts derived from patients with Niemann-Pick type C disease. Arch Biochem Biophys, 593: 50-59.