The group of Prof. X. Barril at Barcelona University (UB) is dedicated to methodological developments in structure-based drug discovery and its application to novel targets, with particular focus on the use of molecular simulation methods for druggability predictions, binding site characterization and virtual screening. The UB ranked the first Spanish university, and the twenty third European institution in scientific quality and productivity. With a student body of 84,370 and a research staff of 4,548 members is the largest of the ten universities in Catalonia. The group has its own computational facilities (state-of-the-art hybrid GPU/CPU cluster) and continuous access to the Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC) through competitive applications.
Website: University of Barcelona
Staff involved in this project:
Prof. Xavier Barril received his Ph.D. from the University of Barcelona in 2001 for theoretical studies on the ligand-receptor molecular recognition process. He then joined the Applications Modelling team at Vernalis (Cambridge, UK), where he was involved in a range of projects, mainly in the oncology area. In 2005 he was appointed ICREA Research Professor and joined Barcelona University’s School of Pharmacy. He has co-authored more than 60 scientific publications, including research papers, reviews and book chapters. Prof. Barril is a well known and highly influential, as attested by an h-index of 30, the numerous invited talks at international conferences that he has imparted or by his editorial and managerial posts. With a strong focus on translational research, Prof. Barril is co-author of 7 patents and co-founder of Minoryx Therapeutics, a company focusing in the development of new treatments for rare diseases.
Dr. Barril’s research focuses on the discovery of bioactive molecules exploiting unusual mechanisms of action. This is done through a combination of computational and experimental techniques. In parallel, his group develops new computational tools to tackle such tough targets and strives to improve the understanding of pharmacologically important biological events (e.g. binding kinetics, allosterism) at the molecular level.
Dr. Carlos Galdeano is a post-doctoral researcher at UB who has recently joined the Barril’s lab after three years post-doctoral experience in Ciuli’s lab (U. Dundee). Dr. Galdeano has been working in several interdisciplinary research groups around Europe and USA and he has learned new and broad range of concepts and ideas in the drug discovery field, which yielded an excellent number of publications, conferences presentations and prizes. His project aims at the identification and characterization of chemical probes to validate specific SCF-E3 ligases.
Dr. Axel Bidon-Chanal is an associate professor at UB who has broad experience in the investigation of structure-dynamics-function relationships in proteins, the molecular determinants of biomolecular association and the design of novel bioactive compounds.