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Institute of Cell Biology National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine


Department of Cell Signaling


Head of Department – Oleh Stasyk


Department of Cell Signaling (ICB-CS) is a newly reformed department in the Institute of Cell biology that works in the fields of:

  • molecular mechanisms of nutrient sensing and signaling in cells of higher eukaryotes and yeasts,

  • development of novel enzymatic anticancer therapies based on nutrient deprivation (including combinational approaches),

  • utilization of yeasts as expression platform for recombinant proteins and as a model for drug design,

  • autophagic degradation of proteins and organelles ( i.e., peroxisomes).

    Unique feature of ICB-CS is combination of expertise and methodologies on yeasts and human cells that allows fast and efficient transfer and validation of the knowledge on signaling pathways between different model organisms. ICB-CS is sufficiently equipped to conduct research that involves modern methods of molecular genetics, biochemistry and cell biology, including hybridome technology.


    One of the main research topics in ICB-CS concerns studies on molecular mechanisms of normal and malignant cellʼs response to amino acid starvation, in particular arginine deprivation. Enhanced and selective sensitivity of many tumor cell lines to arginine starvation that causes programmed cell death has been already exploited in anticancer enzymotherapies. However, this phenomenon has not been explained on the molecular level, what hampers further optimization of the corresponding therapy. Studies in ICB-CS aim to decipher the role of different molecular signaling mechanisms in cellʼs response to arginine deprivation (i.e., NO-dependent regulation, polyamine synthesis, etc.), as well as to elucidate the nature of cell death mechanism involved (i.e., apoptosis, necrosis, autophagy). In addition, the unique efficient yeast overproducers of recombinant human arginine-degrading enzyme arginase-I have been constructed in the ICB-CS to aid in our studies in vitro and in vivo.


    ICB-CS since recently is headed by Dr . Oleh Stasyk, who got his PhD in Cell biology in 2004 , and is currently working on the projects focused on different signaling pathways in eukaryotes. Dr. Stasyk professional expertise includes participation in several international cooperative research grants (3 INTAS, CRDF, 2 FIRCA), and research as a visiting scientist in Oregon Graduate Institute, OR, USA (1996-1998), and Keck Graduate Institute, CA, USA (2003; 2005). Dr. Stasyk was also awarded with several research domestic grants from NASU. He is an author of 19 full-length scientific publications in domestic and highly ranked international peer reviewed journals.