Schur Group

Structural Biology of Cell Migration and Viral Infection

Structural plasticity and movement play fundamental roles in life, from the level of whole organisms down to cells, viruses and individual molecules. The Schur group uses advanced cryo-electron microscopy and image processing methods to study the structure and function of protein complexes in situ, where they can adopt different conformations or are continuously remodeled.

The Schur group focuses on the dynamic actin cytoskeleton, the key player in the ability of cells to move. Actin-mediated cell migration is important in physiological events as embryonic development or wound healing, but deregulation of these processes leads to pathologies including tumor cell metastasis and pathogen infection. The team thus aims to understand the underlying structural principles that control these complex mechanisms. In addition, they are studying complex and irregular viruses, including retroviruses and selected DNA-viruses, where the latter are also important model organisms to understand actin-mediated pathogen propulsion. Viruses are useful tools for electron microscopy method development, but deciphering their structure is also crucial for understanding features of the viral lifecycle, as assembly and infection

Group Leader

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Current Projects

In situ structural biology of actin-mediated processes in cell migration | Structure and Function of Filopodia across Scales | Structural Conservation and Diversity of Retroviral Capsid


Obr M, Schur FK. 2019. Structural analysis of pleomorphic and asymmetric viruses using cryo-electron tomography and subtomogram averaging. Complementary Strategies to Study Virus Structure and Function. Advances in Virus Research vol. 105. 117–159. View

Schur FK. 2019. Toward high-resolution in situ structural biology with cryo-electron tomography and subtomogram averaging. Current Opinion in Structural Biology. 58(10), 1–9. View

Qu K, Glass B, Doležal M, Schur F, Murciano B, Rein A, Rumlová M, Ruml T, Kräusslich H-G, Briggs JAG. 2018. Structure and architecture of immature and mature murine leukemia virus capsids. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 115(50), E11751–E11760. View

Dick R, Zadrozny KK, Xu C, Schur F, Lyddon TD, Ricana CL, Wagner JM, Perilla JR, Ganser PBK, Johnson MC, Pornillos O, Vogt V. 2018. Inositol phosphates are assembly co-factors for HIV-1. Nature. 560(7719), 509–512. View

Turoňová B, Schur F, Wan W, Briggs J. 2017. Efficient 3D-CTF correction for cryo-electron tomography using NovaCTF improves subtomogram averaging resolution to 3.4Å. Journal of Structural Biology. 199(3), 187–195. View

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since 2017 Assistant Professor, IST Austria
2016 – 2017 Postdoc, European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Heidelberg, Germany
2016 PhD, European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Heidelberg and University of Heidelberg, Germany

Selected Distinctions

2016 Paper of the Year Award, Journal of Structural Biology
2011 Poster Prize, 26th Annual European Cytoskeleton Forum

Additional Information

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