Personal tools
You are here: Home / Research / Biological Chemistry / Applied Protein Biochemistry

Applied Protein Biochemistry


The Applied Protein Biochemistry group combines protein biochemistry and biophysics with structural biology to understand protein function in specific pathophysiological contexts and to design and develop proteins with biopharmaceutical/biotechnological potential.

João B. Vicente
PhD in Biochemistry, University of Lisbon

Phone (+351) 214469662 


Research Interests

Our main research interests can be divided in three major topics.


Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) metabolism in human (patho)physiology

  • crosstalk between the gasotransmitters NO, CO and H2S
  • structure, function and pharmacalogical targeting of proteins involved in the metabolism and
  • signalling pathways of reactive sulfur species


"Misbehaving" proteins in Inborn Errors of Metabolism (IEM)

  • structure-function relationships in pathogenic variants of enzymes related to IEM
  • small molecule-based alternative therapies


Development of innovative therapeutic proteins targeting SARS-CoV-2 and other emerging viral threats

  • production of computationally generated recombinant protein designs
  • production of immunogenic nanoparticles
  • interaction with viral targets by biophysical methods


Group Members

João B. Vicente, PhD, Auxiliary Investigator

Dalila Fernandes, PhD Student (joint supervision with Sofia A. Pereira, NOVA Medical School and Pedro Matias, ITQB NOVA)

João M. Costa, MSc Student (joint supervision with Carlos Frazão, ITQB NOVA)

Ana Carolina Buga, MSc Student (joint supervision with Diana Lousa, ITQB NOVA and Salomé Veiga, iMM)

Susana Parreiras, MSc Student (joint supervision with Diana Lousa, ITQB NOVA)

Bárbara Fernandes, MSc Student (joint supervision with Diana Lousa, ITQB NOVA)

Rita Teixeira, MSc Student (joint supervision with Diana Lousa, ITQB NOVA)


External Team members

Ana Hipólito, PhD Student (joint supervision with Jacinta Serpa, NOVA Medical School and Vasco Bonifácio, IST)


Selected Publications 

  1. Fernandes DGF, Nunes J, Tomé CS, Zuhra K, Costa JMF, Antunes AMM, Giuffrè A, Vicente JB (2021) “Human Cystathionine γ-Lyase Is Inhibited by s-Nitrosation: A New Crosstalk Mechanism between NO and H2S”. Antioxidants 10(9): 1391.
  2. Zuhra K, Sousa PMF, Paulini G, Lemos AR, Kalme Z, Bisenieks I, Bisenieks E, Vigante B, Duburs G, Bandeiras TM, Saso L, Giuffrè A, Vicente JB (2019) “Screening Pyridine Derivatives against Human Hydrogen Sulfide-synthesizing Enzymes by Orthogonal Methods”. Sci Rep 9(1):684.
  3. Vicente JB, Colaço HG, Mendes MI, Sarti P, Leandro P, Giuffrè A (2014) “NO· Binds Human Cystathionine ß-synthase Quickly and Tightly”, J Biol Chem 289(12), 8579-87.


MX Unit Website

For further information please visit the MX Unit Website.


Laboratório de Bioquímica Aplicada de Proteínas(PT)

O grupo de Bioquímica Aplicada de Proteínas combina bioquímica e biofísica de proteínas com biologia estrutural para compreender a função de proteínas em contextos patofisiológicos específicos, e para desenhar e desenvolver proteínas com potencial biofarmacêutico/biotecnológico.

As principais áreas de investigação actualmente são:

  • Metabolismo humano do sulfureto de hidrogénio e (pato)fisiologia
  • Proteínas ‘desordeiras’ nos erros hereditários do metabolismo
  • Desenvolvimento de proteínas terapêuticas inovadoras contra o SARS-CoV-2 e outras ameaças virais emergentes



Document Actions