Seminars, events & talks

Monday, 6th July, 2015, Wednesday, July 8 at 12:00h

Long non-coding RNAs as a source of new peptides.

High throughput sequencing of the eukaryotic transcriptome has resulted in the identification of many transcripts that lack long conserved open reading frames and which have been classified as long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs). The majority of them are expressed at low levels and do not have a known function. Despite having been annotated as non-coding RNAs, the sequencing of ribosome-protected RNA fragments (ribosome profiling) has revealed that many of them are scanned by ribosomes and are likely to translate short peptides. We have examined single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data and have found evidence of purifying selection on the corresponding coding regions. We propose that lncRNAs provide the necessary raw material for the evolution of new functional proteins during evolution.

Group Leader Seminars are always on Wednesdays at 12:00h at the Auditorium, Sala Marie Curie or, exceptionally, at the Aula 473.

Speaker: Mar Albà

Room PRBB Auditorium

Wednesday, 20th May, 2015, 11:00h

Mapping eQTL networks with mixed graphical Markov models and the genetic control of gene expression in yeast network hub genes

Speaker: Robert Castelo - Functional Genomics Group - GRIB

Room 473.10

Thursday, 14th May, 2015, 12:00

Targeted DNA- and RNA sequencing of cancer predisposition genes and B-cell repertoire

Speaker: Marton Munz, PhD. Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, University of Oxford

Room Sala Xipre

Wednesday, 15th April, 2015, 11:00h

RNA processing alterations as drivers and prognostic markers of cancer


Alterations in RNA processing are emerging as important signatures to understand tumor formation and to develop new therapeutic strategies. However, it is not yet known the extent to which these alterations can be considered drivers or whether specific patterns of RNA processing can be predictive of prognosis. We describe our efforts to determine the functional impact and relevance in cancer of RNA processing alterations measured in 11 cancer types. We describe multiple alterations in RNA regulatory proteins and their target genes, and investigate RNA alterations that are predictive of tumor stage and survival. These novel signatures expand the catalogue of candidate actionable alterations in tumors and potentially complement current strategies in precision cancer medicine.

Speaker: EDUARDO EYRAS Computational Genomics Group - GRIB

Room Aula room (4th floor)

Wednesday, 25th March, 2015, 11:00h

Chromatin regulatory factors in tumorigenesis: Molecular mechanisms and potential targeting strategies

Speaker: Joan Frigola- Biomedical Genomics group - GRIB (IMIM-UPF)

Room 473.10

Wednesday, 4th March, 2015, 11:00

Identification of recently evolved genes in human and chimpanzee using deep

For a very long time, major mechanisms driving the evolution of new genes were thought to be restricted to gene duplication or rearrangements in existing protein-coding material. Nevertheless, recent comparative genomic analyses have shown that some genes are originated de novo from previously non-functional genomic sequences. These recently evolved genes may be related with the emergence of species or lineage specific adaptations.

Speaker: Jorge Ruiz Orera. Evolutionary Genomics Group, GRIB (IMIM-UPF)

Room 473.10_AULA

Monday, 19th January, 2015, 11:00-12:00

A library of eukaryotic transcription factors, and its application for understanding disease

Speaker: Matthew T. Weirauch; Assistant Professor, Dept. of Pediatrics, University of Cincinnati.

Room Xipre (seminar 173.06-183.01), PRBB.

Thursday, 11th December, 2014

II Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Symposium

This event, jointly organized by the Societat Catalana de Biologia (SCB) and Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB) will take place at the Institut d'Estudis Catalans on the 12th of December 2014 and  will have four great Keynote speakers and a selection of 8 abstracts for the oral presentations. Additional information can be found in this Web site: Registration closes: 30th of November 2014

Speaker: John Overington (EBI-EMBL), David Posada (U. Vigo), Alfonso Valencia (CNIO), Ramon Maspons (AQuAS)

Room Institut d'Estudis Catalans

Tuesday, 9th December, 2014, 18:45

Real world data from Catalonia

This talk is included in the agenda of the European Medical Information Framework (EMIF) Colloquium.

The event will be held on December 10, between 18:00 - 20:00 at the Barcelona Biomedical Research Park (PRBB) auditorium. It will be followed by a networking drink on the PRBB terrace.  There will be simultaneous interpretation available. Please register your attendance by 30th November at For more information on the EMIF Project see website:

Speaker: Ferran Sanz, Director of GRIB

Room PRBB Auditorium

Tuesday, 2nd December, 2014, 12.00-13.00

Rational design of antibodies targeting intrinsically disordered proteins

In biological systems nearly all processes are governed by interactions between protein molecules, which have evolved to perform an innumerable variety of functions. The ability of some proteins, such as antibodies, to interact with high affinity and specificity is being increasingly exploited for therapeutic and diagnostic applications. Yet, using current methods it is laborious and often difficult to generate antibodies against specific epitopes within a protein, in particular within disordered regions. Likewise, the successful development of antibody-based drugs is often hindered by their relatively poor solubility, which leads to aggregation at the high concentrations necessary for effective storage and delivery. 
I will present two computational approaches to rationally modify interactions between protein molecules, including antibodies. The aim of the first is to hamper aberrant interactions by predicting mutations that improve the solubility, while retaining native state and activity. Its application to a single-domain antibody demonstrates that solubility changes upon mutation are estimated with great accuracy, thus offering a cost-effective strategy for the production of soluble proteins. The second consists in the rational design of protein-protein interactions by engineering a scaffold to bind to virtually any target disordered epitope in a protein. We validate this method by designing five single domain antibodies to bind different epitopes within three disease-related intrinsically disordered proteins (α-synculein, Aβ and IAPP). The results show that all antibodies bind to their target with good affinity and specificity. As an example of an application we carried out further experiments on one of these antibodies to show that it inhibits the aggregation of α-synuclein at low substoichiometric concentrations, and that binding indeed occurs at the selected epitope.

Speaker: Pietro Sormanni, PhD Student, Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge

Room Aula room (470.03 – 4th floor)

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