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Ismael Mingarro, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology of the Universitat de València

LECTURE  1 From the squence to consequence

The 20th century was exciting in the study of living beings. Practically, in that short period of time we have gone from thinking that the reactions that occur in the living matter, were chemically different from those that occur in the inanimate matter, to have satisfactory and strictly mechanistic explanations of many phenomena at the molecular level. Certainly, the greatest success of the molecular analysis of living beings has been the discovery of the chemical basis of the genetic information and its mechanisms, which transfer this information from its origin in the chromosomes to the structures and functions of the cell, which has culminated in recent years in the decoding of the genome of various organisms.

The genome is an inherited material of an organism that specifies the instructions for its development and functioning, and that are transmitted from generation to generation. However, we must not forget that the proteins, derived from those genomes, the ones that are in charge of carrying out most of that biological functions. This is why we have to wait for a new horizon, the proteome.

Previous knowledge:  Students must know what the organisation of the cell is as well as to have the basic concepts of the fundamental biological macromolecules, in other words, proteins and nucleic acids.

The conference will require the use of a cannon for audiovisual projection

LECTURE 2 Taking advantage of the power of evolution: 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

The diversity of life gives us an idea of ​​the power of evolution. Since the first forms of life appeared on our planet about 3,700 million years ago, living beings have virtually colonized all environments thanks to the evolution that has found solutions to the problems that chemistry has raised. To achieve this, the lifetime chemical fittings - the proteins - have been optimized, changed and renewed, throughout evolution leading to incredible diversity.

The winners of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2018 have been inspired by the power of evolution, and have used the same principles - genetic changes and selection - to develop proteins that help us solve new chemical problems as a result of human activity At the conference we talked about how new enzymatic activities have been developed using molecular evolution techniques aimed at producing new chemical reactions, biofuels or drugs, which represent a (r) evolution in chemistry and a great benefit for humanity.

Previous knowledge: students must know the basic principles of enzymatic catalysis. The conference will explain how we can optimize catalytic activities with protein engineering techniques.

Brief Curriculum    

He was born in Burriana and graduated in Biology by the Universitat de València (UV) in 1989. He began his research task in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology with studies on epigenetic which constitute his Bachelor’s Degree (dissertation). In September 1994, he obtained his PhD (enzymology in aqueous media) by the Universitat de València. Then, he made a stay at the Torrey Pinnes Institute for Molecular Studies in San Diego (United States) working on combinatorial chemistry. Afterwards, with a European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) grant, he made a post-doctoral stay in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics of the Stockholm University to study how membrane proteins fold. Moreover, in 2009 he was Visiting Professor at Texas A&M University (United States).

Associate Professor in the Universtat de València from 1999 to 2011, he has directed the Membrane Proteins Group (MemProt Lab) (, he has published numerous scientific articles on international magazines of recognised prestige, and he has directed nine Doctoral Thesis (three of them Special Award) and he is Full Professor since 2011.




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Estimulant les vocacions científiques is a project carried out by the Scientific Culture and Innovation Unit of the Universitat de València, with the support of the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology and the Ministry of Economics, Industry and Competitivity

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