Chemical Physiology of Protein Conjugates and Natural Products
Hosted by Luís Branco
Our research uses chemistry principles to address questions of importance in life sciences and molecular medicine. This lecture will cover recent examples of emerging areas in our group in:
(i) methods developed for site-selective chemical modification of proteins at cysteine, disulfide and lysine and their use to build stable and functional protein conjugates for in vivo applications [1,2,3];
(ii) bioorthogonal cleavage reactions for intracellular drug activation ;
(iii) construction of artificial metalloproteins for controlled and tissue specific carbon monoxide (CO) delivery and their use for CO-immunotherapy in cancer .
(iv) harnessing the power of natural product architectures in cancer chemical biology. By identifying on- and off-targets for anti-cancer entities and unveiling the underlying molecular mechanisms of target recognition, we explore the use of natural products as cancer modulators and ligands for the selective delivery of cytotoxic payloads .
 Krall N; da Cruz FP; Boutureira O; Bernardes GJL Nat. Chem. 2016, 8, 103.
 Bernardim B; Cal PMSD et al. Bernardes GJL Nat. Commun. 2016, 7, 13128.
 Matos MJ et al. Bernardes GJL J Am Chem Soc 2018, 140, 4004.
 Jiménez-Moreno E et al. Bernardes GJL Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2017, 56, 243.
 Ferreira MC et al.; Bernardes GJL Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2015, 54, 1172.
 Rodrigues T et al.; Bernardes GJL Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2016, 55, 11077.
Gonçalo Bernardes is a Tenured Lecturer at the Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, U.K.. He is also the Director of the Chemical Biology and Pharmaceutical Biotechnology Unit at the Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Portugal. After completing his D.Phil. degree in 2008 at the University of Oxford, U.K., he undertook postdoctoral work at the Max-Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces, Germany, and the ETH Zürich, Switzerland, and worked as a Group Leader at Alfama Lda in Portugal. He started his independent research career in 2013, and his research group interests focus on the use of chemistry principles to tackle challenging biological problems for understanding and fight cancer. He is a Royal Society University Research Fellow and the awardee of a Starting Grant from the European Research Council (TagIt). He has received a number of accolades including the Royal Society of Chemistry Harrison-Meldola prize and the ChemSocRev Emerging Investigator Lectureship, both in 2016. Just recently he co-founded and spun-out Targ.Tex that uses proprietary artificial intelligence models to deconvolute complex phenotypic read outs of clinically relevant natural products.