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Structural Biology of Small GTPases

Structural Biology of small GTPases

Summary of Research

Our aim is to understand the molecular reactions that govern the functions of small GTPases of the Arf, Rab and Rho families in cellular traffic and cytoskeleton dynamics in normal cells and in diseases.

We use X-ray crystallography to determine the atomic structures of these proteins and their regulators and biochemical methods to analyze their interactions with other proteins and with membranes.

Our recent results describe the activation of small GTPases by guanine nucleotide exchange factors involved in cancers, bone diseases and infections, and their inhibition by small chemical inhibitors with therapeutic potential.

Composition of the team

Jacqueline Cherfils (Research Director CNRS), principal investigator

Mahel Zeghouf (Researcher CNRS)
Gérald Peyroche (Assistant Professor, ENS Paris-Saclay)
Marie-Hélène Kryszke (Assistant Professor, ENS Paris-Saclay)
Jorge Navaza (Research Director CNRS, emeritus, from Argentina)
Yann Ferrandez (Post-doctoral fellow)
Christian Galicia (Post-doctoral fellow, from Mexico)
Wenhua Zhang (Post-doctoral fellow, from China)
Noelia Bernardo-Garcia (Post-doctoral fellow, from Spain)
Simon Veyron (Post-doctoral fellow)
Ilham Ladid Aboulfath (Technician, CNRS)
Lurlène Akendengué (Research Engineer)
François Peurois (PhD student)


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Internships, PhD thesis and post-docs

Interested in doing an internship, a PhD thesis or a post-doc with us? Contact us, enquiries are welcome!

Two positions are open immediately:
Assistant ingénieur in molecular biology and recombinant protein production
Post-doc in integrated structural biology of small GTPases
Both positions are funded by the Institut National du Cancer until December 2018 and can be renewed. Contacts us at to learn more.