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Ana Melo Receives a 2022 Biophysical Travel Award

Ana Melo Receives a 2022 Biophysical Travel Award | iBB | Scoop.it

Ana M. Melo was a recipient of a 2022 Biophysical Travel Award for Scientists within 10-years after completing the PhD. She was honored during the Travel Awardee Reception by the Society’s Committees for Inclusion/Diversity and Professional Opportunities for Women. This highly competitive award covered her travel expenses to San Francisco, California (US).

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Ana Melo Delivers Invited Seminar at the Portuguese Neuroscience Meeting

Ana Melo Delivers Invited Seminar at the Portuguese Neuroscience Meeting | iBB | Scoop.it

Ana Melo gave an invited talk during the XVII Meeting of the Portuguese Society for Neuroscience, at Coimbra, 1 - 3 December, 2021. She presented recent work focused on characterizing the distinct conformational dynamics of the flanking polyQ regions in the membrane-bound state of Huntington exon 1, and its role in Huntington´s disease. Her presentation was in the framework of the SPB Symposium: “A biophysical perspective on degenerative diseases: protein assembly and phase separation”, together with Sandra Macedo Ribeiro (IBMC- i3S) and Salvador Ventura (IBB-Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona).

 

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Portuguese Platform of BioImaging is Now a Euro-Bioimaging Node

Portuguese Platform of BioImaging is Now a Euro-Bioimaging Node | iBB | Scoop.it

The Portuguese Platform of BioImaging (PPBI) is now a Euro-Bioimaging Node. The Advanced Fluorescence Microscopy Facility at iBB-IST joined this application, and now also integrates the Euro-BioImaging network. Ana M. Melo (Facility Head) presented on 22nd February 2021 our site, specialized in quantitative imaging and dedicated to functional imaging and single-molecule techniques.

 

 

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Twin Seminars on Dysfunctional Disordered Proteins and Anticancer Activity of Azurins

Twin Seminars on Dysfunctional Disordered Proteins and Anticancer Activity of Azurins | iBB | Scoop.it

The 3rd Edition of iBB seminars will continue on the 24th June with short talks from Ana Melo - "Untangling the role of dysfunctional disordered proteins in neurodegeneration at single molecule level" and Nuno Bernardes - "Exploring plasma membrane components' organization and dynamics as targets for azurins: their role in anticancer activity and selective uptake of therapeutics". Join us next monday (13h00 h, room 1.38, IST-Tagus Park) to learn more about Ana's and Nuno's research.

 

Photo details: 3D-model of oxidized Pseudomonas aeruginosa azurin (pdb 4AZU)

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Ana Melo Presents and Co-chairs at the 66th Biophysical Society Annual Meeting

Ana Melo Presents and Co-chairs at the 66th Biophysical Society Annual Meeting | iBB | Scoop.it

Ana Melo from BSIRG-iBB delivered an oral presentation at the 66th Biophysical Society Annual (BPS) Meeting, San Francisco, California (February 2022). The focus was on the characterization of the distinct conformational signatures of the flanking polyQ regions in the membrane-bound state of Huntington exon 1, and its implications in Huntington´s disease. Ana was also invited by the Scientific Committee to co-chair the Intrinsically Disordered Proteins (IDPs) section together with Martin Fossat from Washington University (St Louis). The BPS meeting is the largest and most reputed worldwide Biophysical Meeting, and this year was attended by biophysicists from 46 countries. In Ana´s section, researchers from Univ. Cambridge, Yale Univ., Washington Univ. St Louis, Univ. of Copenhagen and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute presented research focused on distinct biophysical features of IDPs associated with function and dysfunction.

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Lipid Hydroperoxide Compromises the Membrane Structure Organization

Lipid Hydroperoxide Compromises the Membrane Structure Organization | iBB | Scoop.it

Lipid hydroperoxides have recently been recognized as key mediators of diseases (such as neurodegenerative disorders or Type II diabetes) and cell death. In a recent work, structural and dynamic perturbations induced by the hydroperoxidized POPC lipid (POPC-OOH) in fluid POPC membranes were addressed using advanced small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and fluorescence methodologies. Notably, this multidisciplinary approach revealed that the hydroperoxide group located at the membrane interface, promotes a higher membrane hydration and microviscosity, with a strikingly lower order and bending rigidity, an unusual trend in membrane biophysics, which ultimately compromises membrane structure organization. This international work co-led by Ana M. Melo (BSIRG-iBB) and Rosangela Itri (Institute of Physics, University of São Paulo) was recently published in Langmuir and involved other BSIRG-iBB researchers (Ana Coutinho, Alexander Fedorov and Manuel Prieto).

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The Conformational Polymorphism of Disordered Proteins in Neurodegeneration at the Single-molecule Level

The Conformational Polymorphism of Disordered Proteins in Neurodegeneration at the Single-molecule Level | iBB | Scoop.it

Intrinsically disordered proteins/regions (IDPs/IDRs) are widespread in the human proteome and play critical roles in distinct biological processes and dysfunction. Contrary to the classical “structure–function” paradigm, IDPs lack stable secondary/tertiary structures under physiological conditions, and instead adopt a dynamic ensemble of multiple conformations. Moreover, several neurodegenerative disorders are associated with the pathological self-assembly of neuronal IDPs, including tau (Alzheimer’s disease), α-synuclein (Parkinson’s disease), and huntingtin exon 1 (Huntington’s disease). Therefore, there is an emerging medical interest in understanding their physical and structural features. However, their characterization is inherently challenging by traditional ensemble and time-averaging methodologies. A recent review co-authored by Ana Melo from BSIRG-iBB, and published in Frontiers in Molecular Neurosciences the advantages of employing cutting-edge single-molecule fluorescence techniques are discussed to characterize the conformational ensemble of neurodegeneration-promoting IDPs under normal and disease conditions to obtain insights into their gain- or loss-of-function.

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Research Scientist Position in Biophysics

Research Scientist Position in Biophysics | iBB | Scoop.it

A position is open to hire a doctorate researcher within the framework of the FCT-funded SingleMolHTTex1 project. The overall aim of this project is to provide a detailed understanding of the initial binding steps of Huntingtin exon1 (HTTex1, with an expanded polyglutamine repeat) to biological membranes. A complementary set of single-molecule fluorescence techniques will be used to obtain insights into the physical/structural features of aggregation-prone states of HTTex1 at the membrane surface. Importantly, the results of this frontier project may assist in the rational design of inhibitors to treat and/or prevent Huntington’s disease. The work will be carried out under the scientific guidance of Dr. Ana M. Melo and at BSIRG (at CQFM and iBB), IST. More information on the position and how to apply can be found here under the acronym SingleMolHTTex1 and email to anammelo@tecnico.ulisboa.pt. The application deadline is February 12th, 2019.

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