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The most cited biological Institute in Russia *

Olga A. Dontsova

correspondent member of RAS, professor, Doctor of Science (Chemistry)
Telephone: 8 (495) 932-88-24
Address: Bldg A, Rm 629
E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Head of the department: Department of RNA Structure and Functions
Belongs to: Department of RNA Structure and Functions

Olga A. Dontsova completed Chemistry Faculty (MSU). PhD in bioorganic chemistry since 1991. Doctor of Science (Bioorganic chemistry) since 1997. Since 1999 prof. of Bioorganic Chemistry, Div. of Chemistry of Natural Compounds, Chemistry Faculty, MSU. Since 2003 head of lab. of Nucleoprotein Compounds, Division of Chemistry of Natural Compounds, Chemistry Faculty, MSU. Since 2009 head of Division of Chemistry of Natural Compounds, Chemistry Faculty, MSU. Since 2011 head of Division of RNA Structure and Function, Belozersky Institute, MSU.

Since 1999 — member of PhD&Dr.Sc. Scientific Board at MSU; Russian Foundation of Basic Research Council; Organizing committees of international conferences in Russia; bilateral French-Russian & German-Russian conferences; “Ribosome” conferences; co-Chair, “RNA World” section on FEBS 2013 Congress. Editorial board member: Biochimie, Acta Naturae, Molek.Biol. (Mosc).

Scientific insterest

My laboratory is focused on investigation of structure and function of RNA-containing cellular machines. Chemical crosslinking approach was developed to follow the dynamic contacts within RNA molecules that are formed in functioning ribosome that allowed to trace the mRNA as well as 5S rRNA contacts in translating ribosome. Combination of crosslinking, chemical footprinting and genetic approaches allowed to discover novel function of the ribosomal E-site, identify translation cycle dependent interaction between the ribosomal functional centers and as well as to follow tmRNA path through the ribosome. Recent studies on RNA modification in the ribosome identified several novel methyltransferases and determined functional role for some of them. These studies allowed to develop novel highthroughput system for screening of new antibiotics that block translation. My laboratory is also interested in studying functional properties and regulation of telomerase ribonucleoprotein complexes as well as the role of non-coding RNA in chromatin organization.


1994 European Academy Award for Young Scientists; 1999,2000 Soros Professor; 1998-2000 Special Grant of the President of Russia for Scientists; 2006 Corresponding Member of Russian Academy of Sciences.


Supervises 14 PhD students at MSU (currently 5 PhD Students); Lecturer (undergrad, Chem. Faculty, MSU): Molecular Biology (72 acad. hrs), RNA Chemistry (12 acad. hrs).

Recent Papers
  1. Laptev I.G., Golovina A.Y., Sergiev P.V., Dontsova O.A. (2015) Posttranscriptional modification of messenger RNAs in eukaryotes. Mol. Biol., 49 (6): 825-836. >>

  2. Osterman I.A., Dikhtyar Y.Y., Bogdanov A.A., Dontsova O.A., Sergiev P.V. (2015) Regulation of flagellar gene expression in Bacteria. Biochem.-Moscow, 80 (11): 1447-1456. >>

  3. Osterman I.A., Evfratov S.A., Dzama M.M., Pletnev P.I., Kovalchuk S.I., Butenko I.O., Pobeguts O.V., Golovina A.Y., Govorun V.M., Bogdanov A.A., Sergiev P.V., Dontsova O.A. (2015) A bacterial homolog YciH of eukaryotic translation initiation factor eIF1 regulates stress-related gene expression and is unlikely to be involved in translation initiation fidelity. RNA Biol., 12 (9): 966-971. >>

  4. Belova E.V., Kozlov A.E., Shubernetskaya O.S., Zvereva M.I., Shpanchenko O.V., Dontsova O.A. (2015) DNA methylation of genes of the main components of the telomerase complex in Danio rerio. Dokl. Biochem. Biophys., 464 (1): 329-332. >>

  5. Beletsky A.V., Malyavko A.N., Sukhanova M.V., Mardanova E.S., Zvereva M.E., Mardanov A.V., Dontsova O.A., Lavrik O.I., Ravin N.V. (2015) Expression of Genes Involved in DNA Repair and Telomere Maintenance in the Yeast Hansenula polymorpha DL1 under Heat Stress. Dokl. Biochem. Biophys., 462 (1): 185-188. >>

  6. Zvereva M.I., Zatsepin T.S., Azhibek D.M., Shubernetskaya O.S., Shpanchenko O.V., Dontsova O.A. (2015) Oligonucleotide inhibitors of telomerase: Prospects for anticancer therapy and diagnostics. Biochem.-Moscow, 80 (3): 251-259. >>

  7. Ivanenkov Y.A., Vasilevski S.V., Beloglazkina E.K., Kukushkin M.E., Machulkin A.E., Veselov M.S., Chufarova N.V., Chernyaginab E.S., Vanzcool A.S., Zyk N.V., Skvortsov D.A., Khutornenko A.A., Rusanov A.L., Tonevitsky A.G., Dontsova O.A., Majouga A.G. (2015) Design, synthesis and biological evaluation of novel potent MDM2/p53 small-molecule inhibitors. Bioorg. Med. Chem. Lett., 25 (2): 404-409. >>

  8. Polikanov Y.S., Osterman I.A., Szal T., Tashlitsky V.N., Serebryakova M.V., Kusochek P., Bulkley D., Malanicheva I.A., Efimenko T.A., Efremenkova O.V., Konevega A.L., Shaw K.J., Bogdanov A.A., Rodnina M.V., Dontsova O.A., Mankin A.S., Steitz T.A., Sergiev P.V. (2014) Amicoumacin A Inhibits Translation by Stabilizing mRNA Interaction with the Ribosome. Mol. Cell, 56 (4): 531-540. >>

  9. Malyavko A.N., Parfenova Y.Y., Zvereva M.I., Dontsova O.A. (2014) Telomere length regulation in budding yeasts. FEBS Lett., 588 (15): 2530-2536. >>

  10. Majouga A.G., Zvereva M.I., Rubtsova M.P., Skvortsov D.A., Mironov A.V., Azhibek D.M., Krasnovskaya O.O., Gerasimov V.M., Udina A.V., Vorozhtsov N.I., Beloglazkina E.K., Agron L., Mikhina L.V., Tretyakova A.V., Zyk N.V., Zefirov N.S., Kabanov A.V., Dontsova O.A. (2014) Mixed Valence Copper(I,II) Binuclear Complexes with Unexpected Structure: Synthesis, Biological Properties and Anticancer Activity. J. Med. Chem., 57 (14): 6252-6258. >>

  11. Sergeeva O.V., Sergiev P.V., Bogdanov A.A., Dontsova O.A. (2014) Ribosome: Lessons of a molecular factory construction. Mol. Biol., 48 (4): 468-484. >>

  12. Shubernetskaya O.S., Skvortsov D.A., Evfratov S.A., Rubtsova M.P., Belova E.V., Strelkova O.S., Cherepaninets V.D., Zhironkina O.A., Olovnikov A.M., Zvereva M.E., Kireev I.I., Dontsova O.A. (2014) High expression levels and nuclear localization of novel Danio rerio ncRNA transcribed from a genomic region containing repetitive elements. Mol. Biol., 48 (4): 563-572. >>

  13. Petrova O.A., Smekalova E.M., Zvereva M.E., Lamzin V., Dontsova O.A. (2014) Identification of additional telomerase component of the yeast H-polymorpha is a step towards understanding the complex at the atomic level. Dokl. Biochem. Biophys., 455 (1): 59-64. >>

  14. Golovina A.Y., Dzama M.M., Petriukov K.S., Zatsepin T.S., Sergiev P.V., Bogdanov A.A., Dontsova O.A. (2014) Method for site-specific detection of m6A nucleoside presence in RNA based on high-resolution melting (HRM) analysis. Nucleic Acids Res., 42 (4): . >>

  15. Smekalova E.M., Malyavko A.N., Zvereva M.I., Mardanov A.V., Ravin N.V., Skryabin K.G., Westhof E., Dontsova O.A. (2013) Specific features of telomerase RNA from Hansenula polymorpha. RNA-Publ. RNA Soc., 19 (11): 1563-1574. >>

  16. Osterman I.A., Ustinov A.V., Evdokimov D.V., Korshun V.A., Sergiev P.V., Serebryakova M.V., Demina I.A., Galyamina M.A., Govorun V.M., Dontsova O.A. (2013) A nascent proteome study combining click chemistry with 2DE. Proteomics, 13 (1): 17-21. >>

  17. Osterman I.A., Evfratov S.A., Sergiev P.V., Dontsova O.A. (2013) Comparison of mRNA features affecting translation initiation and reinitiation. Nucleic Acids Res., 41 (1): 474-486. >>

  18. Smekalova E.M., Shubernetskaya O.S., Zvereva M.I., Gromenko E.V., Rubtsova M.P., Dontsova O.A. (2012) Telomerase RNA biosynthesis and processing. Biochem.-Moscow, 77 (10): 1120-1128. >>

  19. Burakovsky D.E., Prokhorova I.V., Sergiev P.V., Milon P., Sergeeva O.V., Bogdanov A.A., Rodnina M.V., Dontsova O.A. (2012) Impact of methylations of m(2)G966/m(5)C967 in 16S rRNA on bacterial fitness and translation initiation. Nucleic Acids Res., 40 (16): 7885-7895. >>

  20. Golovina A.Y., Dzama M.M., Osterman I.A., Sergiev P.V., Serebryakova M.V., Bogdanov A.A., Dontsova O.A. (2012) The last rRNA methyltransferase of E. coli revealed: The yhiR gene encodes adenine-N6 methyltransferase specific for modification of A2030 of 23S ribosomal RNA. RNA-Publ. RNA Soc., 18 (9): 1725-1734. >>

  21. Sergiev P.V., Golovina A.Y., Sergeeva O.V., Osterman I.A., Nesterchuk M.V., Bogdanov A.A., Dontsova O.A. (2012) How much can we learn about the function of bacterial rRNA modification by mining large-scale experimental datasets?. Nucleic Acids Res., 40 (12): 5694-5705. >>

  22. Sergeeva O.V., Prokhorova I.V., Ordabaev Y., Tsvetkov P.O., Sergiev P.V., Bogdanov A.A., Makarov A.A., Dontsova O.A. (2012) Properties of small rRNA methyltransferase RsmD: Mutational and kinetic study. RNA-Publ. RNA Soc., 18 (6): 1178-1185. >>

  23. Sergiev P.V., Lesnyak D.V., Burakovsky D.E., Svetlov M., Kolb V.A., Serebryakova M.V., Demina I.A., Govorun V.M., Dontsova O.A., Bogdanov A.A. (2012) Non-Stressful Death of 23S rRNA Mutant G2061C Defective in Puromycin Reaction. J. Mol. Biol., 416 (5): 656-667. >>

  24. Burakovsky D.E., Sergiev P.V., Steblyanko M.A., Konevega A.L., Bogdanov A.A., Dontsova O.A. (2011) The structure of helix 89 of 23S rRNA is important for peptidyl transferase function of Escherichia coli ribosome. FEBS Letters, 585 (19): 3073-3078.

  25. Sergiev P.V., Prokhorova I.V., Burakovsky D.E., Milon P., Serebryakova M.V., Demina I.A., Galyamova M.A., Govorun V.M., Bogdanov A.A., Rodnina M.V., Dontsova O.A. (2011) Functional role of ribosomal RNA methylation. FEBS Journal, 278: 10.

  26. Osterman I.A., Sergiev P.V., Tsvetkov P.O., Makarov A.A., Bogdanov A.A., Dontsova O.A. (2011) Methylated 23S rRNA nucleotide m(2)G1835 of Escherichia coli ribosome facilitates subunit association. Biochimie, 93 (4): 725-729.

  27. Sergiev P.V., Osterman I.A., Prokhorova I.V., Nesterchuk M.V., Sergeeva O.V., Golovina A.Y., Demina I.A., Galyamina M.A., Serebryakova M.V., Dontsova O.A. (2011) The Study of the Functional Role of Enzymatic Modifications in Bacterial Ribosomes by the System Biology Approach. Russian Journal of Bioorganic Chemistry, 37 (1): 71-79.

  28. Osterman I.A., Sergiev P.V., Tsvetkov P.O., Makarov A.A., Bogdanov A.A., Dontsova O.A. (2011) Methylated 23S rRNA nucleotide m(2)G1835 of Escherichia coli ribosome facilitates subunit association. Biochimie, 93: 725-729. >>

  29. Sergiev P., Golovina A., Prokhorova I., Sergeeva O., Osterman I., Nesterchuk M., Burakovsky D., Bogdanov A., Dontsova O. (2011) Modifications of Ribosomal RNA: From Enzymes to Function. Ribosomes Structure, Function, and Dynamics- Rodnina/ Wintermeyer/ Green (Editors) – Springer Verlag, Wien, : 97-110. >>

  30. Zvereva M.I., Shcherbakova D.M., Dontsova O.A. (2010) Telomerase: structure, functions, and activity regulation. Biochemistry (Mosc), 75 (13): 1563-83. >>

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