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Priority Programme "Much More Than Defence: the Multiple Functions and Facets of CRISPR-Cas" (SPP 2141)
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)
In 2017, the Senate of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) established the Priority Programme "Much More Than Defence: the Multiple Functions and Facets of CRISPR-Cas" (SPP 2141). The programme is designed to run for six years. The present call now invites proposals for the second three-year funding period.

The two major goals of this concerted Priority Programme are:

- the identification and investigation of new CRISPR-Cas functions beyond viral defence using model representatives of archaea and bacteria
- the elucidation of the molecular mechanisms underlying these novel functions using state-of-the-art methods

The cooperation of researchers from different disciplines, such as microbiology, genetics, medical microbiology, biochemistry, biophysics, bioinformatics, ecology, structural biology, molecular dynamics, single-molecule localisation microscopy and single-molecule biochemistry, will provide the framework for a successful Priority Programme.

The Priority Programme exclusively focuses on the functions of CRISPR-Cas systems in prokaryotes and excludes projects concerned with the application of the technology and with viral defence. To promote cooperation and synergies in the Priority Programme projects have to meet one of the following criteria:

- The CRISPR-Cas systems have to be studied in a bacterial or archaeal organism.
- The underlying molecular mechanisms are investigated.
- Bioinformatics analyses are performed to classify CRISPR-Cas systems and to help elucidate the role and functions of the CRISPR-Cas systems.
- Only new functions of the CRISPR-Cas systems that are beyond the viral defence activity are studied.
- The cross-talk between CRISPR-Cas systems and cellular pathways is elucidated.
- Projects covering "public understanding of science" are also considered. Applicants should have experience with the CRISPR-Cas system and projects have to deal exclusively with the CRISPR-Cas system.