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Assistant Professor

Assistant Professor

Dawid Wnuk, PhD

room nr C125
tel. (12) 664 61 47

2022 - PhD in biological sciences, Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University. Thesis defence with honours: Role of the TGF-β/Smad pathway(s) in the phenotypic transition of human bronchial fibroblasts to myofibroblasts in bronchial asthma.

2017 – Management system specialist, Quality System Auditor (International Register of Certificated Auditors - IRCA), manager of systems: Quality Management, Environmental Management and Health and Safety Management (Lloyd's Register Quality Assurance) - Postgraduate studies: "Management and auditing", Institute of Economics, Finance and Management, Faculty of Management and Social Communication, Jagiellonian University

2014 - Pedagogical qualifications - Pedagogical College, Faculty Didactic Centre

2014 – Master of Biology, specialization: cell biology, Jagiellonian University, Faculty of Biology and Earth Sciences; 




Scientific internships, awards, membership in scientific societies:

Scientific internships:

  • 3-month scientific internship at Department of Respiratory Medicine NUTRIM School of Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences; University Maastricht University, The Netherlands; 23.09.2020 - 22.12.2020

  • 6-month business and scientific internship of the Jagiellonian Science and Business Consortium for Biomolecular and Cellular Research CELL-MOL-TECH under the pro-quality grant of the National Scientific Leading Centre in the field of Life Sciences. Elpharma S.C.

  • Federation of European Biochemical Societies 2019 travel fellowship; FEBS/EMBO Lecture Course: Molecular mechanisms of Tissue Injury, Repair and Fibrosis; Spetses, Greece

  • ​Federation of European Biochemical Societies 2017 travel fellowship; 42nd FEBS Congress 2017: From molecules to cells and back, Jerusalem, Israel

  • Professional internships related to pedagogical studies: continuous internships in: August Witkowski 5th High School in Kraków; Public Junior High School No. 52 of the Piarist Fathers in Kraków, Dr H. Jordan Elementary School No. 31 in Kraków; 1-month teaching internship: Maria Konopnicka Primary School in Medrzechow; 1-month internship: Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski Secondary School in Olesno; 2-week internship: Tadeusz Kosciuszko High School in Dabrowa Tarnowska

  • Student internship: Department of Clinical Immunology and Transplantology CM UJ


  • Award of the Rector of the Jagiellonian University for involvement in activities contributing to the continuous improvement of the quality of education at the Jagiellonian University and obtaining significant teaching achievements in the academic year 2022/2023.
  • Award (scientific, first degree) of the Rector of the Jagiellonian University for a distinguished doctoral dissertation
  • Dissertation with honours, entitled: The role of the TGF-β/Smad pathway(s) in the phenotypic transition of human bronchial fibroblasts to myofibroblasts in bronchial asthma conferred by the Council of the Biological Sciences Discipline of the Jagiellonian University, 22.03.2022
  • Individual Award of the Jagiellonian University Rector III degree for outstanding achievements in scientific work in 2020
  • Winner of the Scholarship of the Minister of Science and Higher Education for outstanding achievements for PhD students (field of biological sciences) 2017/2018
  • Winner of the Scientific Scholarship of the Rector of the Jagiellonian University in the years: 2010/2011; 2017/2018; 2018/2019; 2019/2020
  • Laureate of PhD scholarship within the project from OPUS 9 program funded by the National Science Center (2016-2019)
  • Winner of the J. Zurzycki Research Fellowship in the academic year 2015/2016; 2016/2017; 2017/2018 for scientific achievements in the form of publications in scientific journals of international scope
  • Winner of the pro-quality scholarship of the Rector of the Jagiellonian University in the academic year 2016/2017; 2017/2018; 2018/2019; 2019/2020

Membership of scientific societies:

  • European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology - since 2021
  • European Respiratory Society - since 2018
  • Polish Lung Association - since 2018
  • Polish Society of Biochemistry - since 2015
  • Polish Society of Cell Biology - since 2014


  • Delegate of the Polish Biochemical Society to the international structures of FEBS (Federation of European Biochemical Societies) Junior.
  • Guest editor of the special issue of Biomecidices entitled: "Fibroblasts: Insights from a molecular and pathophysiological perspective".
  • Scientific consultant for the translation of the book entitled. "The Code Breaker: Jennifer Doudna, Gene Editing, and the Future of the Human Race". EN title: "The Code of Life. Jennifer Doudna, Gene Editing, and the Future of the Human Race". Walter Isaacson. Scientific consultation by invitation of Insignis Publishing, Krakow, ISBN 978-83-67710-27-5, 2023
  • Expert of the National Center for Research and Development
  • Scientific reviewer for international journals (by invitation): Scientific Reports (IF=4.38), Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity (IF=7.3), BMC Pulmonary Medicine (IF=3.3), Acta Biochimica Polonica, Pulmonary Pharmacology & Therapeutics (3.3), Cells (MDPI) (IF=7, 7), International Immunopharmacology (IF=5.7), Advances in Respiratory Medicine, Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology (IF=5.4), Environmental pollution (IF=8.9), npj Regenerative Medicine (IF=14.4).
  • Scientific consultant for the translation of the book titled. "MOONSHOT; Inside Pfizer's Nine-Month Race to Make the Impossible Possible" by Dr. Albert Bourla - President and CEO of Pfizer. EN title: "Moonshot.A Race Against Time.How Pfizer accomplished the impossible in nine months".Scientific consultation by invitation of Insignis Publishing, Krakow, 978-83-66873-68-1, 2022
  • Editor of the website of the Department of Cell Biology, WBBiB UJ (from 2020).
  • 2015-2017 - representative of doctoral students in the Council of the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology of the Jagiellonian University
  • Member of the Organizing Committee of the XLV WBBiB UJ Winter School 2018
  • Co-organizer of popular science events:
    ♦ guest lecture (online) at the invitation of the School and Kindergarten Complex in Zalasowa ♦ main organizer of the open lecture by Dr. Krzysztof Chylinski, co-developer of the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology entitled: Nobel Prize-winning scissors: genome editing with the CRISPR/Cas9 method. From a brief history of its origins, through possibilities and limitations, to current and future applications, combined with the promotion of the book The Code of Life, held on 23.06.2023 at the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology of the Jagiellonian University. Website (in Polish) of the event: ♦ Lifescience for High School Students 2023 WBBiB UJ - guest lecture and workshop; ♦ Festivities UJ 2018; ♦ "High Noon Meetings with Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology" project 2018; ♦ Workshop on "Fundamentals of contrast-phase and fluorescence microscopy", 2018; ♦ Night of Biologists at WBBiB UJ - Krakow 2017; ♦ "2nd International Student Conference of Cell Biology" - Krakow, 2016; ♦ Workshop classes for high school students at the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University; Krakow, May 7, 2016 ♦ Delivering a guest lecture by invitation at the 1st Tadeusz Kosciuszko High School in Dąbrowa Górnicza, Poland. Tadeusza Kościuszko in Dąbrowa Tarnowska during the school's open day; 22.04.2016 ♦ "International Student Conference of Cell Biology 2015". - Krakow, 22-23.05.2015; ♦ "Enlighten Yourself" Science Festival in Krakow; as a representative of WBBiB UJ (Booth topics: Use of microscopes in cell biology research - in vitro culture and transplantation of autologous epidermal cells, immuno-fluorescence methods in cell biology); Krakow, 23 May 2015 ♦ Science Festival 2014 "With Science Through the Ages". ♦ Małopolska Night of Scientists at the Jagiellonian University WBBiB - Krakow 2015; ♦ Night of Biologists at the Faculty of Biology and Earth Sciences; 10.01.2014; ♦ "Last bell before matriculation" action, Faculty of Biology and Earth Sciences 20-21.04.2013.

Scientific Interests:

  • Fibroblast to myofibroblast transition (FMT) during wound healing and in the development of fibrotic diseases and bronchial asthma

  • Receptor-dependent signalling pathways and transduction of biochemical signals in normal and cancer cells

  • Use of advanced therapy medical products (ATMP) to treat burns (autologous keratinocytes) and to treat knee degeneration (autologous chondrocytes)

  • Research on plant and lichenic compounds in the treatment of fibrotic diseases and neoplastic diseases (in the partnership with the Faculty of Pharmacy, Jagiellonian University) 

  • Phenotypic heterogeneity of the tumor cell populations and their cytostatic resistance (search for effective anti-cancer and anti-tumor active agents)

  • Study of biological properties of newly-synthesized compounds as a potential drug carriers (in the cooperation with the Faculty of Chemistry, Jagiellonian University)

  • In vitro cultures of human bronchial cells (epithelium, fibroblasts) in 3D models: ALI and EMTU as a tool for intercellular interaction studies in respiratory disease models (in the cooperation with the Department of Pulmonology of the Jagiellonian University Hospital, Collegium Medicum)


  • Biologia komórki [Cell Biology] (WBT-165)
  • Biologia komórki dla biochemików [Cell Biology for Biochemists] (WBT-336)
  • Podstawy biologii komórki [Basics of Cell Biology] (WBT-621)
  • Praktikum z biologii komórki [Practicum in Cell Biology] (WBT-106)
  • Praktikum z cytobiologii dla biofizyków [Practicum in Cytobiology for Biophysicist] (WBT-BFMK4.7)
  • Praktikum z cytochemii [Practicum in cytochemistry] (BCH-395)
  • undergraduate and graduate laboratory lessons at the Department of Cell Biology


  1. Paw M, Kusiak AA, Nit K, Litewka JJ, Piejko M, Wnuk D, Sarna M, Fic K, Stopa KB, Hammad R, Barczyk-Woznicka O, Cathomen T, Zuba-Surma E, Madeja Z, Ferdek PE & Bobis-Wozowicz S.(2023) Hypoxia enhances anti-fibrotic properties of extracellular vesicles derived from hiPSCs via the miR302b-3p/TGFβ/SMAD2 axis. BMC Med 21, 412.
  2. Pavlenko A, Lasota S, Wnuk D, Paw M, Czyż J, Michalik M, Madeja Z (2023) Bronchial Fibroblasts from Asthmatic Patients Display Impaired Responsiveness to Direct Current Electric Fields (dcEFs). Biomedicines. 11(8):2138.
  3. Mokrzyński K, Krzysztyńska-Kuleta O, Wojtala M, Wnuk D, Sarna M, Sarna T (2023). Can l-ascorbic acid and trans-resveratrol protect HaCaT cells from fine particulate matter toxicity? Photochem Photobiol. 2023; 00: 1- 18.
  4. Koczurkiewicz-Adamczyk P, Grabowska K, Karnas E, Piska K, Wnuk D, Klaś K, Galanty A, Wójcik-Pszczoła K, Michalik M, Pękala E, Fuchs H, Podolak I (2023) Saponin Fraction CIL1 from Lysimachia ciliata L. Enhances the Effect of a Targeted Toxin on Cancer Cells. Pharmaceutics. 2023; 15(5):1350.
  5. Paw M, Wnuk D, Madeja Z, Michalik M (2023) PPARδ Agonist GW501516 Suppresses the TGF-β-Induced Profibrotic Response of Human Bronchial Fibroblasts from Asthmatic Patients. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2023; 24(9):7721.
  6. Wnuk D (2022) Podstawy krioprezerwacji komórek. Postępy Biochemii 68 (4); 353-365.
  7. Ferdek PE, Krzysztofik D, Stopa KB, Kusiak AA, Paw M, Wnuk D & Jakubowska MA (2022) When healing turns into killing - the pathophysiology of pancreatic and hepatic fibrosis. The Journal of Physiology, 600: 11, 2579-2612
  8. Orzechowska B, Awsiuk K, Wnuk D, Pabijan J, Stachura T, Soja J, Sładek K, Raczkowska J (2022) Discrimination between NSIP- and IPF-Derived Fibroblasts Based on Multi-Parameter Characterization of Their Growth, Morphology and Physic-Chemical Properties. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 23(4), 2162;
  9. Paw M, Wnuk D, Nit K, Bobis-Wozowicz S, Szychowski R, Ślusarczyk A, Madeja Z, Michalik M (2021) SB203580—A Potent p38 MAPK Inhibitor Reduces the Profibrotic Bronchial Fibroblasts Transition Associated with Asthma. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 22(23), 12790.
  10. Snoch W, Wnuk D, Witko T, Staroń J, Bojarski A J, Jarek E, Plou F J, Guzik M (2021) In search of effective anticancer agents – novel sugar esters based on polyhydroxyalkanoate monomers. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 22 (13), 7238.
  11. Zatorska-Płachta M, Łazarski G, Maziarz U, Foryś A, Trzebicka B, Wnuk D, Chołuj K, Karewicz A, Michalik M, Jamróz D, Kępczyński M (2021) Encapsulation of Curcumin in Polystyrene-Based Nanoparticles—Drug Loading Capacity and Cytotoxicity. ACS Omega, 6, 18, 12168–12178.
  12. Paw M, Wnuk D, Jakieła B, Bochenek G, Sładek K, Madeja Z, Michalik M (2021) Responsiveness of human bronchial fibroblasts and epithelial cells from asthmatic and non-asthmatic donors to the transforming growth factor-β1 in epithelial-mesenchymal trophic unit model. BMC Molecular and Cell Biology 22:19.
  13. Wnuk D, Lasota S, Paw M, Madeja Z, Michalik M (2020) Asthma-derived fibroblast to myofibroblast transition is enhanced in comparison to fibroblasts derived from non-asthmatic patients in 3D in vitro culture due to Smad2/3 signalling. Acta Biochim. Pol. 67.
  14. Wnuk D, Paw M, Ryczek K, Bochenek G, Sładek K, Madeja Z, Michalik M (2020) Enhanced asthma-related fibroblast to myofibroblast transition is the result of profibrotic TGF-β/Smad2/3 pathway intensification and antifibrotic TGF-β/Smad1/5/(8)9 pathway  impairment. Sci. Rep. 10:16492.
  15. Boratyn E, Nowak I, Karnas E, Ryszawy D, Wnuk D, Polus A, Durbas M, Horwacik I, Rokita H (2020) MCPIP1 overexpression in human neuroblastoma cell lines causes cell-cycle arrest by G1/S checkpoint block. J. Cell. Biochem. 121:3406–3425.   
  16. Borowczyk J, Buerger C, Tadjrischi N, Drukala J, Wolnicki M, Wnuk D, Modarressi A, Boehncke WH, Brembilla NC (2020) IL-17E (IL-25) and IL-17A Differentially Affect the Functions of Human Keratinocytes. J. Invest. Dermatol. 140:1379-1389.e2.
  17. Olchawa MM, Szewczyk GM, Zadlo AC, Sarna MW, Wnuk D, Sarna TJ (2020) The Effect of Antioxidants on Photoreactivity and Phototoxic Potential of RPE Melanolipofuscin Granules from Human Donors of Different Age. Antioxidants 9: 1044.
  18. Piska K, Koczurkiewicz P, Wnuk D, Karnas E, Bucki A, Wójcik-Pszczoła K, Jamrozik M, Michalik M, Kołaczkowski M, Pękala E (2019) Synergistic anticancer activity of doxorubicin and piperlongumine on DU-145 prostate cancer cells – The involvement of carbonyl reductase 1 inhibition. Chem. Biol. Interact. 300:40–48.
  19. Paw M*, Wnuk D*, Kadziołka D, Sęk A, Lasota S, Czyż J, Madeja Z, Michalik M (2018) Fenofibrate reduces the asthma-related fibroblast-to-myofibroblast transition by TGF-β/Smad2/3 signaling attenuation and connexin 43-dependent phenotype destabilization. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 19., *równorzędne współautorstwo 
  20. Michalik M, Wójcik-Pszczoła K, Paw M, Wnuk D, Koczurkiewicz P, Sanak M, Pękala E, Madeja Z (2018) Fibroblast-to-myofibroblast transition in bronchial asthma. Cell. Mol. Life Sci. 75:3943–3961.
  21. Wiktor A, Sarna M, Wnuk D, Sarna T (2018) Lipofuscin-mediated photodynamic stress induces adverse changes in nanomechanical properties of retinal pigment epithelium cells. Sci. Rep. 8:17929.
  22. Paw M, Borek I, Wnuk D, Ryszawy D, Piwowarczyk K, Kmiotek K, Wojcik-Pszczoła KA, Pierzchalska M, Madeja Z, Sanak M, Błyszczuk P, Michalik M, Czyz J (2017) Connexin43 controls the myofibroblastic differentiation of bronchial fibroblasts from patients with asthma. Am. J. Respir. Cell Mol. Biol. 57:100–110.
  23. Kwolek U, Nakai K, Pluta A, Zatorska M, Wnuk D, Lasota S, Bednar J, Michalik M, Yusa S ichi, Kepczynski M (2017) Polyion complex vesicles (PICsomes) from strong copolyelectrolytes. Stability and in vitro studies. Colloids Surfaces B Biointerfaces 158:658–666. 
  24. Galanty A, Koczurkiewicz P, Wnuk D, Paw M, Karnas E, Podolak I, Węgrzyn M, Borusiewicz M, Madeja Z, Czyż J, Michalik M (2017) Usnic acid and atranorin exert selective cytostatic and anti-invasive effects on human prostate and melanoma cancer cells. Toxicol. Vitr. 40:161–169.
  25. Sarna M, Olchawa M, Zadlo A, Wnuk D, Sarna T (2017) The nanomechanical role of melanin granules in the retinal pigment epithelium. Nanomedicine Nanotechnology, Biol. Med. 13:801–807. 
  26. Koczurkiewicz P, Kowolik E, Podolak I, Wnuk D, Piska K, Łabędź-Masłowska A, Wójcik-Pszczoła K, Pękala E, Czyż J, Michalik M (2016) Synergistic Cytotoxic and Anti-invasive Effects of Mitoxantrone and Triterpene Saponins from Lysimachia ciliata on Human Prostate Cancer Cells. Planta Med. 82:1546–1552.
  27. Wójcik-Pszczoła K, Hińcza K, Wnuk D, Kądziołka D, Koczurkiewicz P, Sanak M, Madeja Z, Pekala E, Michalik M, Kądziołka D, Koczurkiewicz P, Sanak M, Madeja Z, Pękala E, Michalik M (2016) Pentoxifylline and its active metabolite lisofylline attenuate transforming growth factor β1-induced asthmatic bronchial fibroblast-to-myofibroblast transition. Acta Biochim. Pol. 63:437–442.
  28. Sarna MM, Wojcik KA, Hermanowicz PP, Wnuk D, Burda K, Sanak M, Czyż J, Michalik M (2015) Undifferentiated bronchial fibroblasts derived from asthmatic patients display higher elastic modulus than their non-asthmatic counterparts. PLoS One 10: 

Patents and patent applications:


  • Application of sugar esters of fatty acids, with the acid component being a mixture of monomers obtained from bacterial polyhydroxynonanoate -co- heptanoate, to inhibit cancer cell proliferation in the treatment and prevention of diseases. (Application: P.437233, Exclusive right no: Pat.243694) POLAND

Patent applications:

  • Method of obtaining extracellular vesicles (EVs) derived from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and their application. - Co-author (P.443827), POLAND

Research projects:


  1. Individual Research Grant of POB BioS Priority Research Area : Structural and Translational Biology, under the IDUB (Initiative of Excellence - Research University) program - Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University: Mechanisms of butein effects on cellular processes during bronchial remodeling in asthma. Implementation period: 07.2023 - 07.2024.
  2. ETIUDA 7 (NCN/2019/32/T/NZ3/00405), National Science Centre: Determining the role of the TGFβ1/Smad pathway in the phenotypic transition of bronchial fibroblasts to myofibroblasts in asthma. Implementation period: 10.2019 - 09.2021.
  3. Project for Young Scientists under the grant MNiSW 2020, Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University: Influence of liquiritigenin and its chalcone isoliquiritigenin from licorice root on processes accompanying bronchial wall remodeling in asthma at the cellular level. Implementation period: 07.2020 - 09.2021
  4. Doctoral project within the pro-quality KNOW grant 2016, Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University: Determining the role of selected formins in TGF-β1-induced phenotypic fibroblast to myofibroblast transition (FMT) in bronchial asthma. Realization: 05.2016 - 09.2017
  5. PhD project under the KNOW 2015 pro-quality grant, Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University: Effects of RhoA pathway modulation on migratory activity and cytoskeleton architecture in the study of phenotypic transition of fibroblasts into myofibroblasts (FMT) in bronchial asthma. Implementation period: 07.2015 - 05.2016.


  1. Bridge Alpha Program; Project: MYCOGRESS (MYCO) Natural cosmetic raw material for the production of cosmetic masks and bases from fibers that are mycelium of selected fungal strains. R&D project, Medi Ventures Fund Ltd. and the National Research and Development Center. Role in the project: cell biology expert. Implementation period: 03.2023 - 12.2023.
  2. OPUS (NCN/2015/17/B/NZ3/02248), National Science Centre - Head: Dr. Marta Michalik, Prof. JU: Phenotypic transitions of bronchial fibroblasts to myofibroblasts - role of differential activation of TGF-beta/Smad pathway in cells from asthmatics and non-asthmatics - in vitro studies in 2D, 3D and EMTU model. Implementation period: 06.2016 - 12.2019
  3. Ministry of Health. National Program for the Development of Transplantation Medicine 2011-2020 Preparation for Transplantation of Autologous Cultured Epidermal Cells and Preparation for Transplantation of Autologous Cultured Cartilage Cells from a Living Donor, Director at the Jagiellonian University: prof. Justyna Drukała.


  1. SONATA (NCN/2015/17/D/ST4/00514), National Science Centre - Director: Dr. Maciej Guzik: Lipase-mediated biosynthesis of novel lactose esters. Characterization of their physicochemical and anti-cancer properties. Implementation period: 2016 - 2019.
  2. SONATA (NCN/2016/21/D/NZ7/01546), National Science Centre - Head: Dr. Paulina Koczurkiewicz: New amide derivatives of cinnamic acid as inhibitors of carbonyl reductases modulating doxorubicin activity - a new perspective in cancer therapy. Implementation period: 2017 – 2020
  3. SONATA (NCN/2012/07/B/ST5/00913), National Science Centre - Director: Prof. Mariusz Kępczyński: Studies on the interaction of bioactive polymers with lipid membranes. Implementation period: 2013 – 2016.