Biochemistry, Biophysics & Structural Biology Department

Biochemistry, Biophysics and Structural Biology Department



 Sylvie Nessler 

Deputy  Directors:


    Benoit D’Autréaux

Julie Ménétrey 

 Françoise Ochsenbein


The department is interested in protein architectures and studies how their different structural levels and interactions regulate their functions.


The B3S teams study soluble and membrane protein assemblies involved in major biological processes of eukaryotic and bacterial cells. 

Our aim is to  understand the molecular mechanisms of biological structures and biochemical reactions at different scales, from electrons and protons via atoms and molecules to multicellular organisms. 


Biochemical reactions, interactions and enzymatic processes, including large conformational changes and rearrangements within proteins and their complexes, are often initiated by a transfer of subatomic particles – electrons and protons. Studying the atomic structures of proteins with and without ligands can for example help determine how the structure of the active site enables an enzyme to perform its activity.

At molecular scales, biochemical and biophysical analyses as well as structure determination of protein-protein, or protein-nucleic acid complexes, helps in describing the interaction of biological assemblies and understanding biochemical reactions.  In vitro reconstitution of cellular functions leads to an understanding of the regulation of complex processes in vivo.

Research groups

Group Leader


Group Leaders




Lazar, Noureddine, Carl H. Mesarich, Yohann Petit-Houdenot, Nacera Talbi, Ines Li de la Sierra-Gallay, Emilie Zélie, Karine Blondeau, et al. 2022. “A New Family of Structurally Conserved Fungal Effectors Displays Epistatic Interactions with Plant Resistance Proteins.” PLOS Pathogens 18 (7): e1010664.
Rietmeyer, Lauriane, Inès Li De La Sierra-Gallay, Guy Schepers, Delphine Dorchêne, Laura Iannazzo, Delphine Patin, Thierry Touzé, et al. 2022. “Amino-Acyl TXNA as Inhibitors or Amino Acid Donors in Peptide Synthesis.” Nucleic Acids Research, November, gkac1023.
Bentaleb, Cyrine, Kévin Hervouet, Claire Montpellier, Charline Camuzet, Martin Ferrié, Julien Burlaud-Gaillard, Stéphane Bressanelli, et al. 2022. “The Endocytic Recycling Compartment Serves as a Viral Factory for Hepatitis E Virus.” Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences 79 (12): 615.
Graaf, S. E. de, S. Un, A. G. Shard, and T. Lindström. 2022. “Chemical and Structural Identification of Material Defects in Superconducting Quantum Circuits.” Materials for Quantum Technology 2 (3): 032001.
Udry, Guillermo A. Oliveira, Laura Tiessler-Sala, Eva Pugliese, Agathe Urvoas, Zakaria Halime, Jean-Didier Maréchal, Jean-Pierre Mahy, and Rémy Ricoux. 2022. “Photocatalytic Hydrogen Production and Carbon Dioxide Reduction Catalyzed by an Artificial Cobalt Hemoprotein.” International Journal of Molecular Sciences 23 (23): 14640.


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