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Umeå University/MIMS/SciLifeLab researcher awarded ERC Starting grant 2020

Jonas Baranun 1000For his innovative research project on the infection biology of microsporidia, Jonas Barandun has been awarded a prestigious Starting Grant by the European Research Council (ERC), funded with 1.5 million euros over five years. Dr. Barandun joined Umeå University from The Rockefeller, University, New York, in January 2019 to start a research group at the Laboratory for Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden.

In his research group, Jonas Barandun and his team use cryo-electron microscopy to visualize the unknown molecular world of specialized pathogens, such as the microsporidia. Microsporidia are a group of poorly understood pathogens with very unusual biology.

As a structural biologist, I am fascinated by how evolution has shaped essential molecular machines and how pathogens use these machines for their infection, to manipulate and exploit their host. I am delighted my team will now be able to tackle some of the big open questions in microsporidian biology.“ says Dr. Barandun.

Support for early-career researchers

With the Starting Grants, the European Research Council rewards young researchers for their innovative research and fosters their scientific independence. The selection criteria are the scientific excellence of the applicant and the project. In 2020, 677 million euros have been allocated to fund 436 European researchers, 23 of them in Sweden. With a success rate of 13.3 % in 2020, the ERC Starting Grant is considered one of the most competitive funding schemes in Europe.

The Laboratory for Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden (MIMS)

Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden is the Swedish node of the Nordic EMBL Partnership for Molecular Medicine. Its mission is to foster the next generation of group leaders in infection and microbiology research.

More information

MIMS website:
Press release by the ERC:

Picture by Umeå University.

Emmanuelle Charpentier took the Nobel Prize in Chemistry

Emmanuelle has been awarded jointly with Jennifer Doudna the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for discovering the groundbreaking CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology. She is a former group leader at MIMS, honorary doctor at Umeå University and former visiting professor at UCMR.

Movie by Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation (

Battling antibiotic resistance

movie by Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation, with participation of scientists from MIMS and UCMR:
Or watch the original movie on:

Research about infectious diseases:

Oliver Billker in movie of Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation:
Or watch the original movie on:

footer all slides 2014-02-06

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