Researchers from UG as winners of POLONEZ BIS 1 competition

Dr Marta Pobłocka

Dr Marta Pobłocka.

Dr Marta Anna Pobłocka from the International Centre for Research on Cancer Vaccines and dr Thomas George Zlosnik from the Faculty of Mathematics, Physics and Computer Science have won research grants within the POLONEZ BIS 1 competition organised by the National Science Centre. They obtained a total of over PLN 2 million.

Dr Marta Pobłocka completed her MSc studies at the University of Glasgow (Scotland), received her PhD degree at the University of Leicester (United Kingdom) and did her postdoctoral training at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute at the University of Cambridge (United Kingdom), and is now starting cooperation with the International Centre for Research on Cancer Vaccines at the UG.

The scientist received PLN 1 093 492 from the National Science Centre for the project 'Characteristics of ageing of immune cells and its correlation with lung cancer'.  

'The project aims to determine how non-small cell lung cancer at different stages of progression affects the ageing of cells of the immune system. In addition, we want to identify a panel of markers to identify cells that undergo premature ageing. We believe that therapy directed against cells showing signs of ageing may improve the efficiency of cancer immunotherapy,' - says dr Marta Pobłocka.

The project is part of the interdisciplinary research current conducted on non-small cell lung cancer at the ICCVS. It combines immunology, molecular biology, biochemistry and oncology and uses the advantages of the latest advances in technology to provide new information on the molecular basis of immune cell ageing and its prognostic significance.

Dr Thomas George Zlosnik is a researcher in cosmology and gravity, having previously worked at Oxford University, the Perimeter Institute in Canada, Imperial College London and the Czech Academy of Sciences in Prague. Funding for the 'Gravity and Dark Matter' project is in the order of one million zloty.

'In standard cosmological theory, most of the matter in the universe is in the form of "dark matter", the exact nature of which is currently unknown. In previous research, I have helped to show that, surprisingly, many of the effects attributed to dark matter may instead result from describing gravity by extending Einstein's general theory of relativity. The project involves research that will lead to significant progress in understanding whether the dark matter effect is gravitational in nature,' - explains the scientist.

The POLONEZ BIS programme is co-financed by the European Commission and the National Science Centre under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie COFUND grant. It is addressed to scientists from all over the world who have a PhD degree and who in the period of three years preceding the date of opening the call for proposals did not stay, work or study in Poland for longer than 12 months in total. The competition is held in two stages. Authors of the highest-rated projects are invited to an interview, where they present the assumptions of the project and answer questions of an international group of experts.

The competition aims to support the development of scientific careers and financing of ambitious research projects carried out in the best Polish centres. The total pool of funds is as much as PLN 48 million. Grants can be used to remunerate the project leader and members of the research team, including scholarships for students or doctoral students, and to cover costs related to expenses necessary for the implementation of a research project, i.e. apparatus and small scientific and research equipment, materials, foreign services, business trips, making publications available in open access and others.

Elwira Romaniuk / Press Office UG