Publicerad: 2018-04-19 14:34 | Uppdaterad: 2018-05-31 14:03

Professor Rudolf Zechner får Rolf Luft Award 2018

Professor Rudolf Zechner vid Institute of Molecular Biosciences, Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Österrike har utsetts till mottagare av Rolf Luft Award 2018.

Han får priset för sin upptäckt av enzymet adipos triglycerid lipas och dess roll för intracellulär nedbrytning av fett. Priset delades ut vid en ceremoni i samband med Rolf Luft Symposium i Nobel Forum den 30 maj 2018. Vid ceremonin håller Rudolf Zechner även prisföreläsningen “FAT FISSION - The breakdown of cellular lipid stores in health and disease.”

Professor Rudolf Zechner


After discovering adipose triglyceride lipase (ATGL) as the enzyme initiating fat catabolism in mammalian cells, Rudolf Zechner showed that comparative gene identification-58 (CGI-58) is an essential co-activator. These findings provided a molecular basis for understanding human neutral lipid storage diseases. He then revealed a crucial function for ATGL in lipid signaling by showing that the activity of the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) family of transcription factors depends on ATGL-mediated fat catabolism. Further seminal discoveries connect ATGL to the pathogenesis of cancer cachexia and Zechner's work demonstrated that lipase deficiency inhibits the development of cachexia in mouse xenotransplant cancer models.

His recent work elucidated the role of cardiac and brown adipose ATGL expression in cold-induced thermogenesis. Translational work by Zechner showed that the ATGL inhibitor Atglistatin reduces diet-induced obesity, improves glucose tolerance and prevents liver steatosis in mice, findings that identify ATGL as a target for treating metabolic diseases. Hence, Rudolf Zechner leads the field defining mechanisms for the intracellular catabolism of fat and his research has transformed textbook biochemistry, explained human genetic diseases and identified a promising strategy for treating metabolic disorders.

Rolf Luft Award delas ut årligen till en framstående forskare aktiv inom endokrinologi, metabolism och diabetesforskning. Utmärkelsen består av medalj, diplom och prispengar.