Laboratory of Bioenergetics and Biomembranes


Staff: Violetta Biernat, Karolina Drabik (PhD student), Magdalena Lebiedzińska-Arciszewska, Dominika Malińska, Monika Oparka (PhD student), Paulina Patalas-Krawczyk (PhD student), Małgorzata Partyka (PhD student), Bernadeta Pyclik (PhD student), Jan Suski (postdoc), Joanna Szczepanowska, Jędrzej Szymański, Jarosław Walczak (PhD student), Mariusz Więckowski, Aleksandra Wojtala (PhD student), Lech Wojtczak (Professor emeritus)

Research profile:

• bioenergetics; mitochondrial energy metabolism and energy coupling
• signalling in normal and malignant cells
• mitochondrial stress, cytoskeleton and mitochondrial organization
• oxidative stress; p66Shc and ageing
• role of mitochondria in apoptosis and ageing
• mitochondrial, metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases


• basic biochemical and molecular biology methods
• measurement of mitochondrial parameters in situ
• measurement of ROS (Reactive Oxygen Species) production in isolated mitochondria and cultured cells
• cell subfractionation (isolation of mitochondria, ER, the plasma membrane, PAM and MAM fractions)
• Blue Native and Clear Native PAGE with the “in-gel” activity assay
• [Ca2+] measurements in intracellular compartments with fluorescent and aequorin probes
• visualization of mitochondria within the cell (confocal microscopy)
• analysis of mitochondrial properties in situ (LSC)

Current research activities:

• role of PAM (Plasma Membrane Associated Membranes) and MAM (Mitochondria Associated Membranes) components in calcium homeostasis
• dynamics and organization of mitochondrial network
• intracellular dynamics and selected proteins (GBE1, Drp1, p66Shc)
• interactions between mitochondria and the ER/PM
• effect of mitochondrial genetic defects on cell structure, mitochondrial energy state, generation of ROS and calcium homeostasis in human cells with defined mitochondrial disorders
• role of p66Shc protein in oxidative stress and ageing
• mitochondrial stress signaling (retrograde signaling)
• role of UCPs (Uncoupling Proteins) in energy coupling and antioxidant defence
• GSDs – glycogen storage diseases; role of glycogen in the nervous system

More information at the web site:

Selected publications:

Wojewoda M., Duszyński J., Więckowski M., Szczepanowska J. (2012) Effect of selenite on basic mitochondrial function in human osteosarcoma cells with chronic mitochondrial stress. Mitochondrion, 12: 149-155.

Wojewoda M., Duszyński J., Szczepanowska J. (2011) NARP mutation and mtDNA depletion trigger mitochondrial biogenesis which can be modulated by selenite supplementation. International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology, 43: 1178-1186.

Wojewoda M., Duszyński J., Szczepanowska J. (2010) Antioxidant defence systems and generation of reactive oxygen species in osteosarcoma cells with defective mitochondria: Effect of selenium. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta, 1797: 890–896.

Giorgi C., Ito K., Lin H.K., Santangelo C., Więckowski M.R., Lebiedzińska M., Bononi A., Bonora M., Duszyński J., Bernardi R., Rizzuto R., Tacchetti C., Pinton P., Pandolfi P.P. (2010) PML regulates apoptosis at endoplasmic reticulum modulating calcium release. Science, 330: 1247-1251.

Więckowski M.R., Giorgi C., Lebiedzińska M., Duszyński J., Pinton, P. (2009) Isolation of mitochondria-associated membranes and mitochondria from animal tissues and cells. Nature Protocols, 4: 1582-1590