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Vladka Čurin Šerbec

Name of the laboratory

Center for the Production of Diagnostic Reagents and for Research and research group Biomedicine
Blood Trasfusion Centre of Slovenia
Šlajmerjeva 6, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
+ 386 1 5438 100

Members of the laboratory

Members: Center for the Production of Diagnostic Reagents and for Research
Head
Vladka Čurin Šerbec vladka.curin@ztm.si
Research Personnel
Maja Černilec maja.cernilec@ztm.si
Katrina Hartman katrina.hartman@ztm.si
Valerija Hladnik valerija.hladnik@ztm.si
Uroš Rajčević uros.rajcevic@ztm.si
PhD Students
Sandra Omejec sandra.omejec@ztm.si
Laboratory Engineers
Boštjan Smrekar bostjan.smrekar@ztm.si
Melita Gracar melita.gracar@ztm.si
Technicians
Marjana Šprohar marjana.sprohar@ztm.si

Laboratory activity

Center for the Production of Diagnostic Reagents and for Research (CPDRR) was established two decades ago. One of its main activities was the production of diagnostic reagents for blood grouping under GMP, based on mouse monoclonal antibodies, which were developed, validated, registered (and later licensed) by CPDRR.

Besides production, CPDRR had strong collaborations with pharmaceutical industry in Slovenia and abroad (development of diagnostic tools, based on polyclonal antibodies for quality control, development of panels of monoclonal antibodies »à la carte«, know-how; nine projects and scientific elaborates for the industry so far).

All the time CPDRR has been involved in research activities in biomedical field in Slovenia and internationally with monoclonal antibodies as one of the main research lines (ten research projects and twelve PhDs were ran so far). We have our own animal facility (with permanent permission of appropriate veterinary authority), as well as recombinant antibody/protein facilities.

We are also an important partner of the University of Ljubljana, teaching students about theoretical and practical aspects of monoclonal antibody production and their use in research, diagnostics and in therapy on graduate and postgraduate levels.

Research activity

A number of monoclonal antibodies were developed, validated, produced, licensed and patented by CPDRR. Besides monoclonal antibodies against antigens of the blood group system AB0, they are directed against cytokines (TNF, p55, p75, MIF), potential new tumor markers and prion protein and its truncated form. In the last case, a panel of mouse monoclonal antibodies were developed in order to: 1) prepare a new generation of diagnostic kit, which was proposed to the EU Commission; 2) study the pathogenesis of the disease; 3) C-terminally truncated form of prion protein, PrP226*, was first described with the help of one of our monoclonal antibodies. In last years, there is a debate about its involvement in neurodegenerative diseases, especially in Alzheimer's disease. Besides development and validation of »in-house« immunological tests for IgA, anti-IgA and IgG determination, which are used in blood bank and diagnostic labs, our group is also developing tools for fully human monoclonal antibody production from immunised donors. A part of our activities is dedicated to recombinant Ab technology development with the main purpose to use the rAb as antigen binding domains in cell therapeutics such as adopted T-cells and stem cells.

Techniques available

  • protein/antigen expression and purification
  • mouse monoclonal antibody production
  • polyclonal antibody production
  • recombinant antibody production and expression in non-immune (stem) cells
  • antibody characterisation (western blot, dot blot, ELISA, flow cytometry and cell sorting, immunohistochemistry, immunocytochemistry, variable-region DNA sequencing)
  • monoclonal antibody purification (HPLC, including adaptation to serum-free media)
  • monoclonal antibody fragmentation
  • production under GLP
  • development and validation of ELISA tests
  • recombinant Ab technologies: rDNA, rRNA, rAb, CAR-T technology

Publications (2016-present)

  • GOLOB URBANC, Anja, RAJČEVIĆ, Uroš, STRMŠEK, Žiga, JERALA, Roman. Design of split superantigen fusion proteins for cancer immunotherapy. The Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2019, vol. 294, iss. 16, 6294-6305.
  • KOVAČ, Valerija, ČURIN-ŠERBEC, Vladka. Prion proteins without the glycophosphatidylinositol anchor: potential biomarkers in neurodegenerative diseases. Biomarker Insights, 2018, vol. 13, 1-5.
  • JAZBEC, Katerina, JEŽ, Mojca, SMREKAR, Boštjan, MICESKA, Simona, ROŽMAN, Jasmina Živa, ŠVAJGER, Urban, ZAVRŠNIK, Janja, MALOVRH, Tadej, ROŽMAN, Primož. Chimerism and gene therapy - lessons learned from non-conditioned murine bone marrow transplantation models. European Journal of Haematology, 2018, vol. 100, no. 4, 372-382.
  • RAZPOTNIK, Rok, NOVAK, Neža, ČURIN-ŠERBEC, Vladka, RAJČEVIĆ, Uroš. Targeting malignant brain tumors with antibodies. Frontiers in Immunology, 2017, vol. 8, 1-14.
  • KOVAČ, Valerija, ZUPANČIČ, Blaž, ILC, Gregor, PLAVEC, Janez, ČURIN-ŠERBEC, Vladka. Truncated prion protein PrP226* - a structural view on its role in amyloid diseas. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 2017, vol. 484, iss. 1, 45-50.
  • BOGOŽALEC KOŠIR, Alexandra, LUKAN, Tjaša, KUKOVEC, Mateja, SNOJ, Vivijana, MONTANIČ, Sendi, ČURIN-ŠERBEC, Vladka, RAJČEVIĆ, Uroš. New monoclonal antibodies against bilitranslocase as a diagnostic tool in determining the progress of clear cell renal cell carcinoma. Zdravniški vestnik - glasilo Slovenskega zdravniškega društva, 2017, vol. 86, iss. 5/6, 177-184.
  • KOVAČ, Valerija, HAFNER BRATKOVIČ, Iva, ČURIN-ŠERBEC, Vladka. Anchorless forms of prion protein - Impact of truncation on structure destabilization and prion protein conversion. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 2016, vol. 481, iss. 1/2, 1-6.
  • AMIN, Ladan, NGUYEN, Xuan T. A., ROLLE, Irene Giulia, D'ESTE, Elisa, GIACHIN, Gabriele, TRAN, Thanh, ČURIN-ŠERBEC, Vladka, COJOC, Dan, LEGNAME, Giuseppe. Characterization of prion protein function by focal neurite stimulation. Journal of Cell Science, 2016, vol. 129, no. 20, 3878-3891.
  • RONCADOR, Giovanna, ENGEL, Pablo, MAESTRE, Lorena, ANDERSON, Amanda P., CORDELL, Jacqueline L., CRAGG, Mark S., ČURIN-ŠERBEC, Vladka, JONES, Margaret, JURANIĆ LISNIĆ, Vanda, KREMER, Leonor, et al. The European antibody network's practical guide to finding and validating suitable antibodies for research. MAbs, 2016, vol. 8, iss. 1, 27-36.
  • FILIPPI, Antonio, PETRUSSA, Elisa, RAJČEVIĆ, Uroš, ČURIN-ŠERBEC, Vladka, PASSAMONTI, Sabina, RENZONE, Giovanni, SCALONI, Andrea, ZANCANI, Marco, VIANELLO, Angelo, BRAIDOT, Enrico. Flavonoid interaction with a chitinase from grape berry skin : protein identification and modulation of the enzymatic activity. Molecules, 2016, vol. 21, no. 10, 1-16.
  • PODERGAJS, Neža, MOTALN, Helena, RAJČEVIĆ, Uroš, VERBOVŠEK, Urška, KORŠIČ, Marjan, OBAD, Nina, ESPEDAL, Heidi, VITTORI, Miloš, HEROLD-MENDE, Christel, MILETIC, Hrvoje, BJERKVIG, Rolf, LAH TURNŠEK, Tamara. Transmembrane protein CD9 is glioblastoma biomarker, relevant for maintenance of glioblastoma stem cells. Oncotarget, 2016, vol. 7, no. 1, 593-609.