Structural Glycobiology

Structural Glycobiology

Glycans are not only one of the major components of the cell but also are essential molecules that modulate a variety of important biological processes in all living organisms. The structural diversity od glycans is particularly relevant in molecular recognition events including cell-cell, cell-matrix and cell-molecule interactions during critical stages of development, the immune response and host-pathogen interactions. Most of the enzymes encoded in eukaryotic/ prokaryotic/archaeal genomes responsible for the biosynthesis of glycan structures are glycosyltransferases. The long-term goal of our research program is to understand how glycosyltransferases function to control health and disease at the molecular level. We are particularly interested in investigating the structural and mechanistic properties of glycosyltransferases with special emphasis on the study of integral and peripheral membrane-associated enzymes. To this end, we are using a multidisciplinary approach including molecular biology, protein biochemistry, protein biophysics and structural biology.

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