Institut de Biologie StructuraleGrenoble / France

Malene Jensen, laureate of the first Impulscience® Program of the Bettencourt Schueller Fondation

Malene Jensen, CNRS research director in the “Protein Dynamics and Flexibility” group at the IBS, is one of the 7 researchers in Life Science distinguished by the first Impulscience grant program of the Bettencourt Schueller Fondation. The Foundation is committed to financially support each of these researchers for a period of 5 years and with 2.3 million euros, a sum that covers the research program, a personal bonus for the researcher and the management costs.
The work of Malene will allow to observe more closely the capacity of cells to respond continuously to internal and external signals, thanks to so-called scaffold proteins. Malene will use nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy to study intrinsically disordered scaffold proteins in the MAPK cell signalling pathways and she will visualise their assembly with kinases and GTPases. The work will reveal how scaffold proteins contribute to enzymatic activity and signalling specificity. The study of the specific mechanisms of cell signalling is particularly relevant because deregulation of many signalling pathways is associated with diseases, such as metabolic disorders and cancer. The work will therefore open new avenues for drug discovery by targeting the recruitment of enzymes to scaffold proteins.