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Department of Comparative Biochemistry and Bioanalytics

Prof. dr hab. Maria Rąpała-Kozik
room: 4.0.26 (A103), phone: +48 12 664 65 27, e-mail:

Dr. Dominika Bartnicka
room: 4.0.24 (A135), phone: +48 12 664 65 44, e-mail:

Dr. Grażyna Braś
room: 4.0.27 (A101), phone: +48 12 664 65 24, e-mail: 

Dr. Justyna Karkowska-Kuleta
room: 4.0.27 (A101), phone: +48 12 664 65 24, e-mail:

Dr. Dorota Satała
room: 4.0.27 (A101), phone: +48 12 664 65 24, e-mail:

Dr. Marcin Zawrotniak
room: 4.0.24 (A135), phone: +48 12 664 65 44, e-mail:

Mgr Magdalena Smolarz 

Mgr Magdalena Surowiec 

Mgr Miriam Gozalez-Gonzalez

  • Yeast adhesion and invasion of the host cells
  • Neutrophil Extracellular Traps (NETs) in fungal infections
  • The role of aspartic proteases and adhesins of Candida spp. in fungal infections
  • Moonlighting proteins at the surface of Candida spp. cells
  • Interactions within the mixed biofilms involving bacterial and fungal opportunistic pathogens
  • Biochemistry of vitamins and coenzymes
  • The role of vitamin B1 (thiamine) in the protection of plant and yeast cells under stress conditions

  • Gene expression analysis (QuantStudio 3 Real-Time PCR Systems)
  • Recombinant protein production (E. coli, P. pastoris)
  • Chromatographic techniques for separation and identification of biomolecules (FPLC, HPLC)
  • Mass spectrometry coupled with liquid chromatography (LC-MS/MS) in proteomics
  • Protein interaction analysis: surface plasmon resonance (SPR, BIACORE 3000), ELISA, fluorescence anisotropy, FRET
  • Fluorescence microscopy (Olympus IX73)

  1. Maria Rapala-Kozik: Candida spp. fungi in aspiration pneumonia – accidental companions or environmental creators for bacterial anaerobial pathogen (2020–2023) OPUS 17, National Science Centre (NCN).
  2. Justyna Karkowska-Kuleta: Effect of fungal extracellular vesicles on the formation and stability of multispecies biofilms formed by pathogenic fungi from genus Candida (2019–2020). MINIATURA 3, National Science Centre (NCN).
  3. Marcin Zawrotniak: The role of extracellular neutrophilic DNA as an activating factor for the release of extracellular neutrophilic traps (2019–2020). MINIATURA 2, National Science Centre (NCN).

  1. Bartnicka, D., Gonzalez-Gonzalez, M., Sykut, J., Koziel, J., Ciaston, I., Adamowicz, K., Bras, G., Zawrotniak, M., Karkowska-Kuleta, J., Satala, D., Kozik, A., Zyla, E., Gawron, K., Lazarz-Bartyzel, K., Chomyszyn-Gajewska, M., & Rapala-Kozik, M. (2020). Candida albicans shields the periodontal killer Porphyromonas gingivalis from recognition by the host immune system and supports the bacterial infection of gingival tissue. International journal of molecular sciences, 21(6), 1984.
  2. Karkowska-Kuleta, J., Kulig, K., Karnas, E., Zuba-Surma, E., Woznicka, O., Pyza, E., Kuleta, P., Osyczka, A., Rapala-Kozik, M., & Kozik, A. (2020). Characteristics of extracellular vesicles released by the pathogenic yeast-like fungi Candida glabrata, Candida parapsilosis and Candida tropicalis. Cells, 9(7), 1722.
  3. Karkowska-Kuleta, J., Surowiec, M., Gogol, M., Koziel, J., Potempa, B., Potempa, J., Kozik, A., & Rapala-Kozik, M. (2020). Peptidylarginine deiminase of Porphyromonas gingivalis modulates the interactions between Candida albicans biofilm and human plasminogen and high-molecular-mass kininogen. International journal of molecular sciences, 21(7), 2495.
  4. Satala, D., Karkowska-Kuleta, J., Zelazna, A., Rapala-Kozik, M., & Kozik, A. (2020). Moonlighting proteins at the candidal cell surface. Microorganisms, 8(7), 1046.
  5. Guevara-Lora, I., Bras, G., Karkowska-Kuleta, J., González-González, M., Ceballos, K., Sidlo, W., & Rapala-Kozik, M. (2020). Plant-derived substances in the fight against infections caused by Candida Species. International journal of molecular sciences, 21(17), 6131.
  6. Zawrotniak, M., Wojtalik, K., & Rapala-Kozik, M. (2019). Farnesol, a quorum-sensing molecule of Candida albicans triggers the release of neutrophil extracellular traps. Cells, 8(12), 1611.
  7. Zawrotniak, M., Bartnicka, D., & Rapala-Kozik, M. (2019). UVA and UVB radiation induce the formation of neutrophil extracellular traps by human polymorphonuclear cells. Journal of photochemistry and photobiology. B, Biology, 196, 111511.
  8. Bartnicka, D., Karkowska-Kuleta, J., Zawrotniak, M., Satała, D., Michalik, K., Zielinska, G., Bochenska, O., Kozik, A., Ciaston, I., Koziel, J., Dutton, L. C., Nobbs, A. H., Potempa, B., Baster, Z., Rajfur, Z., Potempa, J., & Rapala-Kozik, M. (2019). Adhesive protein-mediated cross-talk between Candida albicans and Porphyromonas gingivalis in dual species biofilm protects the anaerobic bacterium in unfavorable oxic environment. Scientific reports, 9(1), 4376.
  9. Karkowska-Kuleta, J., Satala, D., Bochenska, O., Rapala-Kozik, M,, & Kozik, A. Moonlighting proteins are variably exposed at the cell surfaces of Candida glabrata, Candida parapsilosis and Candida tropicalis under certain growth conditions. BMC Microbiol. 2019 Jul 3;19(1):149.
  10. Karkowska-Kuleta, J., Bartnicka, D., Zawrotniak, M., Zielinska, G., Kieronska, A., Bochenska, O., Ciaston, I., Koziel, J., Potempa, J., Baster, Z., Rajfur, Z., & Rapala-Kozik, M. The activity of bacterial peptidylarginine deiminase is important during formation of dual-species biofilm by periodontal pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis and opportunistic fungus Candida albicans. Pathog Dis. 2018 Jun 1;76(4):fty033
  11. Zawrotniak, M., Bochenska, O., Karkowska-Kuleta, J., Seweryn-Ozog, K., Aoki, W., Ueda, M., Kozik, A., & Rapala-Kozik, M. (2017). Aspartic Proteases and Major Cell Wall Components in Candida albicans Trigger the Release of Neutrophil Extracellular Traps. Frontiers in cellular and infection microbiology, 7, 414.

  • The influence of Candida albicans virulence factors on the response of gingival fibroblasts
  • The biological consequences of degradation of key host proteins by Candida spp. aspartic proteases
  • Generation of Extracellular Traps (ET) by selected cells of the host immune system after contact with C. albicans cells and purified fungal virulence factors
  • Changes in the gene expression of C. albicans selected virulence factors after contact with host cells
  • Genetic and proteomic changes in the host defense cells in contact with C. albicans
  • The formation of mixed biofilms by C. albicans and pathogenic bacteria – the analysis of factors involved in the cooperation between both types of microorganisms
  • Identification of the protein-protein interactions of the major bacterial and fungal surface proteins, using SPR (surface plasmon resonance)
  • Structural characteristics of thiamine biosynthetic enzymes using site directed mutagenesis.

Basic knowledge in biochemistry, molecular biology, cell biology, proteomics and instrumental analysis