Structural Biology Research Centre

Structural Biology Research Centre

The Structural Biology Research Centre will aim at gaining precise knowledge of the structure of macromolecules and their organisation within cells, which is essential to understand how they function. This area of work will be paramount to understand the molecular mechanisms by which different diseases originate in the human body and will help to develop novel drugs.

Pigino Group Link

Pigino Group

The Pigino Group investigates the 3D structure of molecular components of cilia in their native cellular context and in isolation, trying to answer the question how they orchestrate cilia-specific functions.

Vannini Group Link

Vannini Group

The Vannini Group employs an Integrative Structural Biology approach, combining cutting-edge cryo-EM analysis, x-ray diffraction data, cross-linking and native mass-spectrometry. We integrate the structural data with molecular and cellular biology techniques in order to obtain a comprehensive view of these fundamental processes and how their mis-regulation leads to cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.



A micronutrient with major effects on cancer cell viability

Anastasia Kapara, Alessandro Vannini & Barrie Peck

2020 - Nature Metabolism


Hybrid Gene Origination Creates Human-Virus Chimeric Proteins during Infection

Ho JSY, Angel M, Ma Y, Sloan E, Wang G, Martinez-Romero C, Alenquer M, Roudko V, Chung L, Zheng S, Chang M, Fstkchyan Y, Clohisey S, Dinan AM, Gibbs J, Gifford R, Shen R, Gu Q, Irigoyen N, Campisi L, Huang C, Zhao N, Jones JD, van Knippenberg I, Zhu Z, Moshkina N, Meyer L, Noel J, Peralta Z, Rezelj V, Kaake R, Rosenberg B, Wang B, Wei J, Paessler S, Wise HM, Johnson J, Vannini A, Amorim MJ, Baillie JK, Miraldi ER, Benner C, Brierley I, Digard P, Łuksza M, Firth AE, Krogan N, Greenbaum BD, MacLeod MK, van Bakel H, Garcìa-Sastre A, Yewdell JW, Hutchinson E, Marazzi I.

2020 - Cell


DNA origami-based single-molecule force spectroscopy elucidates RNA Polymerase III pre-initiation complex stability

Kramm K, Schröder T, Gouge J, Vera AM, Gupta K, Heiss FB, Liedl T, Engel C, Berger I, Vannini A, Tinnefeld P, Grohmann D.

2020 - Nature Communications


Human Condensin I and II Drive Extensive ATP-Dependent Compaction of Nucleosome-Bound DNA

Muwen Kong, Erin E. Cutts, Dongqing Pan, Fabienne Beuron, Thangavelu Kaliyappan, Chaoyou Xue, Edward P. Morris, Andrea Musacchio, Alessandro Vannini, Eric C. Greene

2020 - Molecular Cell


TFIIIC Binding to Alu Elements Controls Gene Expression via Chromatin Looping and Histone Acetylation

Roberto Ferrari, Lara Isabel de Llobet Cucalon, Chiara Di Vona, Franc¸ ois Le Dilly, Enrique Vidal, Antonios Lioutas, Javier Quilez Oliete, Laura Jochem, Erin Cutts, Giorgio Dieci, Alessandro Vannini, Martin Teichmann, Susana de la Luna and Miguel Beato

2019 - Molecular Cell