Ali Miserez


Full Professor of Biomimetic and Bioinspired Materials at Nanyang Technological University (NTU, Singapore), which he joined in 2009, with joint appointments in the School of Materials Science and Engineering and the School of Biological Sciences. He obtained his PhD (2003) from EPFL (Switzerland) in the field of composite and mechanics of materials. From 2004 to 2009, he was a post-doctoral fellow at UC Santa Barbara, where he expanded his research towards biomimetic engineering and biochemistry of extra-cellular tissues. At NTU, he is currently the founding Director of the "Center for Sustainable Materials". Miserez’s research aims at revealing the molecular, physico-chemical, and structural principles from unique biological materials, and at translating their molecular design into novel biomimetic materials, including for healthcare applications.

Web: https://dr.ntu.edu.sg/cris/rp/rp00592

Lecture description: 

RNA sequencing and Proteomics: new sequences and functions fom Nature

Bio-based polymers hold great potential as alternative sources of petro-chemical based polymers. They are eco-friendly, non-toxic, and their degradable products are harmless, such as amino acids in the case of protein materials. If one wants to replicate these load-bearing proteins artificially, it is critical to determine their primary structure, a task that has historically been a major bottleneck exacerbated by the lack of genomic data from many model organisms. In this talk, Ali will describe his pioneer efforts in establishing Next-Generation sequencing (RNA-Seq) combined with high-throughput proteomics in the context of biomimetic materials engineering which enables the rapid discovery of novel protein materials.

Phase-separating peptides derived from Nature for intracellular delivery of large macromolecular therapeutics

Ali will present recent biomedical applications translated from the discovery of histidine-rich proteins from the squid beak (HBPs). He will describe peptide mimetics derived from HBPs that can self-assemble into coacervate microdroplets by Liquid-Liquid Phase Separation (LLPS), a process during which large macromolecular therapeutics (proteins, enzymes, antibodies, mRNAs, etc…) can be concomitantly recruited within the coacervates. These cargo-loaded coacervates readily cross the cell membrane of a wide range of mammalian cells via non-classical endocytic pathways and can efficiently release their cargo in the cytosol to achieve therapeutic efficacy.

Oleg Melnyk 


CNRS researcher at the Pasteur Institute of Lille. Leads a chemical biology group pioneering novel methods for protein synthesis and modificiation. Investigates protein function, notably studying hepatocyte growth factor/MET receptor activation determinants and designing MET agonists for regenerative medicine. Oleg is currently advancing methods to accelerate chemical reactions in water using electrostatic assistance.

Web: https://pasteur-lille.fr/en/

Lecture description: 

Chemical synthesis of proteins

The lecture will elucidate the fundamental principles underlying chemical protein synthesis in aqueous environments, employing chemoselective peptide bond forming reactions. Furthermore, pratical insights will be shared to facilitate the swift implementation of basic methodologies in the laboratory. 

Margarida Dias

Margarida Dias is a bioengineer passionate about protein engineering for different applications in Biotechnology, e.g. purification, therapeutics, and materials. In her career both in academia and industry, she always pursued a multidisciplinary approach, combining different methodologies from diverse fields e.g. chemistry, biochemistry, molecular and cell biology. Margarida Dias has expertise in protein engineering workflows – protein rational design, implementation of in vitro evolution by Phage, Ribossome and CIS Display, protein production in cell-based and cell-free systems, as well as different purification strategies and biophysical characterization. Currently, Margarida is interested in applying her knowledge and experience in academia and industry to projects in protein engineering for novel marine based-materials. She is a team member in projects that develop novel materials for biosensing and purification at UCIBIO, NOVA FCT, Portugal.

Web: https://biomolecular-engineering-lab.pt/leadership/

 Birgit Wiltschi

Birgit Wiltschi received a PhD in Biochemistry from Graz University of Technology in Austria. She continued her scientific work as a postdoc at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried, Germany and afterwards was a group leader at the Albert-Ludwigs University of Freiburg, Germany. Currently, she is a principal investigator in the PURE (FET-Open) and MISTER (ANR-FWF joint) projects at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna. In addition, she heads the Synthetic Biology Group at the Austrian Centre of Industrial Biotechnology – acib GmbH. Her research focuses on the engineering of proteins using unnatural amino acids, for instance to introduce site-selective bioorthogonal protein modifications.

Web: https://forschung.boku.ac.at/en/researcher/

Omar Boutureira

Associate Professor in the Department of Analytical and Organic Chemistry at the Universitat Rovira i Virgili (URV), Tarragona, Spain and PI of the Chemical Biology unit @SINTCAT group. After receiving his B.Sc. in Chemistry and Ph.D. degree at the URV, he undertook postdoctoral research at the University of Oxford, UK and the University of Cambridge, UK. His research interests focus on various aspects of Chemical Biology and Glycobiology, including chemical protein modification (with a particular emphasis on the development of novel aqueous bioorthogonal reactions & targeted therapeutics/imaging probes for cancer diagnosis and treatment) and the use of halogens & chalcogens as well as metal-mediated strategies in glycoconjugate synthesis and carbohydrate chemistry.

Web: https://www.sintcarb.urv.cat/en/group/curricula/boutureira/

Lecture description: 

Selective chemical modification of peptides and proteins

Site-selective chemical protein modification has emerged as a powerful strategy to install biophysical probes and post-translational modifications as well as for the conjugation of therapeutic payloads at pre-determined sites. A number of methodologies based on reactions that address biocompatibility, reactivity and (chemo)selectivity issues have been developed. This lecture covers the most relevant examples of selective protein/antibody and peptide modification strategies

Ylva Ivarsson

Ylva Ivarsson obtained her PhD in Biochemistry from Uppsala University, Sweden, in 2006, which was followed up by three international postdocs (Italy, Belgium and Canada) on the diverse topics such as protein folding and misfolding, protein-phospholipid interactions and motif-based protein-protein interactions.  Ivarsson returned to Sweden to start her independent lab in the Department of Chemistry – BMC at Uppsala University in July 2013.  Since 2020 she is a full Professor of biochemistry. The Ivarsson lab combines biochemical and biophysical methods with bioinformatics and cell-based approach to explore interactions between modular domains and short linear motifs found in the intrinsically disordered regions of target proteomes.

Web: https://www.katalog.uu.se/profile/

Lecture description: 

Generation of high affinity binders by phage display / Proteomic peptide-phage display

Ylva will describe how she developes and employes proteomic peptide-phage display (ProP-PD) for charting the short-linear motif based interactions of the human proteome in health and disease.

Birthe B. Kragelund

Birthe B. Kragelund is a Professor in biophysics and NMR spectroscopy at the Department of Biology, University of Copenhagen (UCPH), Denmark and Heads the Novo Nordisk Foundation center REPIN – rethinking protein interactions  – focusing on interactions of intrinsically disordered proteins. She is instigator and vice chair of the integrative structural biology cluster (ISBUC) at UCPH and have led several interdisciplinary collaborative consortia. Kragelund earned her PhD at the legendary Carlsberg Laboratory in Copenhagen, and at the Southern University of Denmark, with research also at the Dobson laboratory in Oxford, UK. She did a post doc at the Chemical Center at Lund University, Sweden, after which she moved to UCPH. Kragelund’s research is focused on how structural disorder impacts biology, and she has made seminal contributions to the field, including deciphering disorder in membrane proteins.

Web: https://www.ku.dk/

Lecture description: 

Biophysical tools to study intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and protein-protein interactions 

In the first session Birthe will introduce some of the fundamental biophysical methods to study IDPs, including isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC), small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), single molecule FRET (smFRET) and with an emphasis on nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. Before the lecture it is expected that the students have tried the on-line exercise on NMR on IDPs (link to be provided). In the second session, published examples on the use of the different biophysical methods in the understanding of the ensembles and functions of IDPs are presented and discussed.

Hartmut Luecke

Hartmut Luecke is a Full Professor at FCT NOVA & CryoEM@NOVA Scientific Coordinator. He is a structural biologist with an emphasis on membrane protein structure-function studies and structure-based drug discovery. He began his independent career at the Stanford Synchrotron as a Structural Biologist before joining the faculty at the University of California, Irvine (UC Irvine) in 1996, where he was Professor of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Computer Science for over 20 years. He is also the founding director of the UC Irvine Center for Biomembrane Systems. In 2017, he was appointed as Professor and Assistant Director at the Norwegian Center for Molecular Medicine / University of Oslo (NCMM/UiO) leading the group on Structural Biology and Drug Discovery. At the same time, he invested in setting up cryo-EM facilities at UiO, the first such infrastructure in Norway.

Arménio Barbosa

Arménio Barbosa holds a PhD in Multiscale Modeling at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia (Unimore), IT, and a Degree in Biochemistry at the University of Porto, PT. Barbosa is currently a Researcher in Molecular Modelingat the NOVA School of Science and Technology (NOVA). He held three post-doctoral research positions in drug discovery at Unimore (2010); in computational approaches for the development of anticancer drug targets at the University of Bologna, Italy (2011-2014), in computational enzyme design and proteins for gas sensing at NOVA (2015-2018). Barbosa research interests are in multiscale modelling of small molecules, proteins and biomaterials. The main research area involves using molecular modeling tools to develop ligands for biopharmaceuticals purification, study protein-based materials, dynamic behavior of biomolecules and drug discovery.

Web: https://biomolecular-engineering-lab.pt/leadership/