The Applied Structural Biology Laboratory was created in 2014 and has been dedicated to the structural and functional studies of proteins that mediate transport in the cell. The main focus of the group is one of the largest superfamily of proteins, the ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters (ABC transporters), which is represented in all phyla, from prokaryotes to humans. They are involved in many processes inside the cell, including virulence, pathogenesis and drug resistance.
We want to understand the physiological role and the molecular structure of transporters that belong to several pathogenic bacteria, including the causative agent of the citrus canker disease, Xanthomonas citri, and Mycobacterium tuberculosis that cause the Tuberculosis in humans. We use structural bioinformatics, protein purification, biophysical and biochemical methods for functional characterisation and X-ray chrystallography, Small Angle X-ray Scattering and others for characterization of the molecular structures.
In our group, we also are interested in develop mechanisms for modulation and inhibition of these proteins, using different approaches.