The Arnold Rikli Award 2019

The winner of the Arnold Rikli Prize 2019 is Prof. Dr. Florian Gruber, Research Division for Biology and Pathobiology of the Skin. Department of Dermatology, Medical University of Vienna, Austria. The intended prize ceremony on the occasion of the International Symposium “Biologic Effects of Light“ in Homburg/Saar couldn’t be undertaken due to the corona pandemia and must be shifted to the next year 2021.

Prof. Gruber was awarded for his research entitled” A novel role for NUPR1 in the keratinocyte stress response to UV oxidized phospholipids“.

The focal point of research of Florian Gruber’s working group concerns the interaction of the skin with environmental factors. Special interest lies in the role of oxidized phospholipids which are involved in numerous diseases. In the framework of the award-winning research work was investigated which oxidized phospholipid mediators will be generated in primary human keratinocytes upon exposure to UV radiation and their contribution to UVA responses. Exposure to UVA and to in vitro UVA-oxidized phospholipids activated, on the level of the entirety of mRNA and proteins in the cell, the antioxidant response signaling (NRF2/), lipid metabolizing enzyme expression and cell stress due to unfolded protein response (UPR) signaling. The nuclear protein 1 (NUPR1) was identified as an upstream regulator of the cell stress induced by oxidized phospholipids and UVA radiation which was expressed in the epidermis. Silencing of NUPR1 resulted in augmented expression of antioxidant and lipid detoxification genes and disturbed the cell cycle, making it a potential key factor in skin reactive oxygen species responses intimately involved in aging and pathology.

Prof. Dr. Florian Gruber

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