Christina and Nikolai co-authors on a paper in the journal Autophagy

Christina and Nikolai are co-authors on a paper published in the November 2023 issue of the journal "Autophagy" (Impact Factor 13.391).

The paper is resulting from a collaboration with the group of Guillermo Mariño (Oviedo, Spain).

6th Nordic Autophagy Society Conference in Kuopio, Finland

The 6th Nordic Autophagy Society (NAS) Conference was held in Kuopio, Finland May 31st - June 2nd 2023.

Nikolai, Christina, Elena, Natalie and Julia attendend. All presented posters. Natalie gave a selected short talk on "The Role of Mammalian Atg8 Proteins In PINK/Parkin-Independent Mitophagy". Her talk attracted a lot of attention. Nikolai chaired the first session, featuring Keynote Speaker Tassula Proikas-Cezanne (Tübingen, Germany). The other Keynote Speakers were Christian Behrends (Münich, Germany), Daniel Hofius (Uppsala, Sweden) and Lisa Frankel (Copenhagen, Denmark).

The Conference was very inspiring and enjoyable for everyone!

Photos from the two poster sessions (photos taken by Nikolai Engedal)

Kuopio (photos taken by Nikolai Engedal)

Helsinki: before the Conference we had a fun one-day lab retreat in Helsinki!

Nikolai presented at the 3rd Women in Autophagy (WIA) workshop

Nikolai was one of four speakers at the 3rd Women in Autophagy (WIA) workshop, which was held on October 6th, 2022. On the workshop theme “Inducers and inhibitors of autophagy“, Nikolai gave a 45 minute presentation on ”Exploring autophagic inducers and inhibitors with cargo-based autophagy assays”.

The talks were followed by a 1h panel discussion and Q&A with the four speakers David Rubinsztein, Carmine Settembre, Mericka McCabe and Nikolai. The event attracted around 150-200 participants.

Master student Elena joins the Autophagy in Cancer team

Welcome to Elena Sofie Cao, new IBV Master student in the group from Autumn 2022.

Elena will work on a project related to understand the role of autophagy in the interation between cells of the prostate cancer tumor microenvironment.

Supervisors: Natalie Jayne Kurganovs (main), Nikolai Engedal (co-supervisor) and Cinzia Progida (internal IBV).

5th NAS Conference 2022 - Nikolai gave Keynote Lecture and Group members presented Posters

Great trip to the 5th Nordic Autophagy Society (NAS) Conference Conference on “Autophagy mechanisms, physiology and beyond” in Copenhagen, Denmark! The Conference was held September 14th-16th 2022. Nikolai, Natalie, Julia, Christina and Juncal participated.

Nikolai gave a Keynote Lecture on “Elucidating the role of mammalian ATG8 proteins in autophagy by the use of cargo-based assays”. The other Keynote Speakers were Ivan Dikic, Wade Harper, and Claudine Kraft.

Natalie and Julia presented a poster on “Optimising the measurement of autophagic flux in primary, nonmalignant human epithelial prostate cells”

Christina presented a poster on “An investigation of the potential role of autophagy and autophagy-related proteins in melanoma development”

Juncal presented a poster on “The effects of anti-cancer drug-nanomaterials on autophagy in malignant and non-malignant cells”

Everyone received very useful feedback, enjoyed the interactions, and learned a lot from the Conference!

Christina graduated as MSc !

Christina succesfully defended her MSc thesis on June 22nd 2022, with the highest grade possible (A).

Hard work and effort paid off!

Paper on Keima-based assays and mitophagy induction published January 1st 2022

Our paper on Keima-based assays and mitophagy induction was published January 1st 2022 in the Autophagy in Cancer Special Issue of Methods in Molecular Medicine (Springer Nature) !

Authors include Nikolai, Sarvini, Thea and Julia from the group, and collaborators at our Institute (Tonje, Alfonso, Maria) and from Denmark (Carsten J. Beese and Lisa Frankel).

Link to the paper:

Group attendance at the 4th Nordic Autophagy Conference in Tromsø - November 10th-12th 2021

Inspiring 4th Nordic Autophagy Conference in Tromsø November 10th-12th 2021 (110 participants), with attendance by Natalie, Christina, Julia, Sarvini and Nikolai. Masks had to be worn, but the value of a physical conference can not be underestimated! It was a great experience for all.

Top left: Christina and Natalie presenting their poster! Lot of interest.

Top right: Julia and Sarvini received a lot of attention on their poster!

Bottom: Nikolai - lead organizer of the Conference and NAS chair

Click here for the Conference Report with pictures

Eivind Hovig Group Day Seminar at the Norwegian Cancer Society Science Center - November 5th 2021

Great Seminar Day at the Norwegian Cancer Society Science Center (downwtown Oslo) November 5th 2021 with scientific talks from invited speakers Steve Bova, Hege Russnes, Jorrit Enserrink, Kristin Taskén and Leiv Rønneberg, as well as from Alfonso Urbanucci, Nikolai Engedal and Sigve Nakken.

The Seminar also comprised important talks from cancer patient organizations highlighted cancer patient persepectives. The latter included talks from amongst others Roger Larsen (Progether) and Per Hansen-Just (PROFO - Prostatakreftforeningen). We also had a nice presentation from the Norwegian Cancer Society by Rønnaug Kolve, Torunn E. Tjelle, Ingvill Moe and Guro Hundvebakk.

A special thanks to Julia for help in organizing and taking care of all the practical arrangements!

Natalie Kurganovs starting on the prostate cancer project

A warm welcome to Natalie, who arrived in August 2021 to start working on the Autophagy in Prostate Cancer project!

Natalie has a strong background in prostate cancer research, both from wet lab and bioinformatics work - with a PhD in Christopher Hovens lan at The University of Melbourne (Australia) and a Postdoc in the labs of Thomas Kislinger at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and Paul Boutros at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (both in Toronto, Canada).

Sarvini and Thea graduated MSc!

Sarvini and Thea succesfully passed their MSc examinations on June 15th and 18th 2021.

Both with excellent grades. Congratulations!!

The two graduated MSc from the well-deserved celebration on June 18th 2021

The two graduated MSc from the well-deserved celebration on June 18th 2021


Awarded 9 million NOK to study autophagy in prostate cancer

Nikolai Engedal
Nikolai Engedal

Nikolai Engedal was recently awarded 9 million NOK in Open project support from The South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority (Helse Sør-Øst) 2020 call. The project aims to unravel the role of autophagy in prostate cancer formation and progression, to discover prognostic autophagy-related gene signatures and markers, and to identify autophagy-modulating drugs that can reduce cancer cell aggressiveness. Engedal is now starting up a project group in Eivind Hovig’s group at the Department of Tumor Biology.

AUTOprost grant application funded

The application “AUTOprost – the role of autophagy in prostate cancer formation and progression” to the Open Call of The South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority was recently funded with NOK 9 million (principal investigator: Nikolai Engedal). 

(posted January 29th 2021)

The 4th edition of Guidelines for the use and interpretation of assays for monitoring autophagy to appear soon! 

- A new and updated edition of the “Guidelines for the use and interpretation of assays for monitoring autophagy” (4th edition) is now in press in the journal Autophagy. A must read for everyone interested in autophagy! 

(posted January 29th 2021)