Structural and Computational BiologyStructural Bioinformatics and Network Biology

"For every complex problem there's an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong". H.L. Mencken.

Structural Bioinformatics and Network Biology

Patrick Aloy

Group Leader

ICREA Research Professor

+34 93 40 39690

Modern molecular and cell biology no longer focus only on single macromolecules but now look into pathways, complexes or even entire organisms. The many genome-sequencing projects have provided a near complete list of the components present in an organism, and post-genomic projects have aimed to catalogue the relationships between them.

The emerging field of systems biology is now centered mainly on unravelling these relationships. For example, an understanding of metabolic and signalling pathways or gene-regulatory networks relies on detailed knowledge of protein–metabolite, protein–protein and protein–nucleic-acid interactions. However, a full understanding of how molecules interact can be attained only from three-dimensional (3D) structures, as these provide crucial atomic details about binding. These details allow a more rational design of experiments to disrupt an interaction and therefore to perturb any system in which the interaction is involved.

Structural Bioinformatics and Network Biology Group Webpage

Our main scientific interests lie in the field of structural bioinformatics, in particular, the use of high-resolution 3D structures to reveal the molecular bases of how macromolecular complexes and cell networks operate. Structural information for interacting cellular components willimprove our understanding of the whole-cell framework at atomic level, thereby contributing to biological systems modelling.

Mosca R, Pache RA and Aloy P.
Mol Cell Proteomics, 7 (11), M111.01496 (2012)
Soler-López M, Zanzoni A, Lluís R, Stelzl U and Aloy P.
Genome Res, 3 (21), 364-76 (2011)
Stein A and Aloy P.
Plos Comput Biol, 5 (6), e1000789 (2010)
Sardon T, Pache RA, Stein A, Molina H, Vernos I and Aloy P.
Embo Rep, 12 (11), 977-84 (2010)

Group news & mentions

21 Sep 2014

To mark World Alzheimer's Day on 21 September, the newspaper ARA publishes an article about research trends into Alzheimer's disease.

19 Sep 2014

The Spanish Society of Neurology estimates that 600,000 people are affected by Alzheimer’s disease in this country.

12 May 2014

IRB Barcelona has opened

Upcoming events

24 Oct

Speaker: Prof. Kristian Helin1-3,
1BRIC, University of Copenhagen, 2Centre for Epigenetics,
University of Copenhagen, 3DanStem, University of
Copenhagen, Denmark

29 Oct

Speaker: Dr. James Gordon,
Structural Characterization of macromolecular assemblies, IRB Barcelona, Spain

29 Oct

Speaker: Dr. Maribel Geli,
The endocytic pathway and the actin cytoskeleton, IBMB- CSIC, Barcelona, Spain

31 Oct

Speaker: Dr. Alfonso Martínez Arias,
Dept. of Genetics, University of Cambridge, UK

Funding

This group receives financial support from the following sources:

  • European Commission
  • ICREA (Institució Catalana de Recerca i Estudis Avançats)(Catalan Institute of Research and Advanced Studies)