Maria Sokolova

Maria Sokolova

Research Group Bacteriophages

Microbiology, Bacteriophages, RNA polymerases, Structural Biology, Biochemistry


Our research group focuses on studying the viruses of bacteria, called bacteriophages, which stand as the most abundant and diverse biological entity on our planet.

Many enzymes, which are conserved in cellular organisms such as, for example, RNA polymerases, are not conserved in bacteriophages and therefore exhibit unique properties compared to their cellular counterparts. Investigating the diversity of molecular machines and processes that have evolved in bacteriophages provides valuable insights into the evolution and offers a source of new biotechnological tools. Furthermore, in any non-model bacteriophage, at least half of its genes, often even more, have unknown functions, presenting a vast uncharted realm for future discoveries.

Currently, our research is focused on understanding the mechanisms of transcription by unusual phage RNA polymerases, their coupling to the translocation of phage DNA into the host cell, and the mechanisms of the translation of phage genes.


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