Lluís Ribas de Pouplana

Institut de Recerca Biomèdica de Barcelona

Life & Medical Sciences

Born in Girona. He studied Biology at the University of Barcelona, and Biochemistry at Edinburgh University, where he obtained a PhD in 1992 with the help of a fellowship from La Caixa/British Council. He then joined the Biology department of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as a postdoc. In 1997 he moved to The Scripps Research Institute where he became assistant professor of Molecular Biology in 2001. In 2003 he joined ICREA, and became Principal Investigator at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine, where he heads the Laboratory of Gene Translation. He is the founder of two biotechnology companies and has acted as Chief Scientific Officer of Omnia Molecular SL. (2010-2015). In addition, Dr. Ribas serves as a scientific advisor to aTyr Ltd.

Research interests

Our laboratory investigates the process of protein synthesis, its evolution, and its connections to human health. We are preoccupied by two fundamental questions: what are the functional limits of the protein synthesis apparatus, and how is protein synthesis regulated and integrated within the context of the cell. We want to understand what defines the boundaries of the proteomes of species, and what specific adaptations allow certain organisms to fabricate proteins that are inaccessible to other species. In addition, we are studying protein synthesis in the mitochondria, with a particular emphasis on the mechanisms that coordinate mitochondrial protein synthesis to mitochondrial dynamics and cell cycle. How these biosynthetic routes are coordinated, and how are they synchronized with the cell cycle is unknown. We want to contribute to the resolution of this problem through the study of an essential mitochondrial protein that we discovered in the lab.

Selected publications

- Rafels-Ybern À, Torres AG, Grau-Bove X, Ruiz-Trillo I & Ribas de Pouplana 2018, 'Codon adaptation to tRNAs with Inosine modification at position 34 is widespread among Eukaryotes and present in two Bacterial phyla', RNA Biology, 15, 4-5, 500 - 507.

- Torres AG, Wulff TF, Rodriguez-Escriba M, Camacho N & Ribas de Pouplana L 2018, 'Detection of Inosine on Transfer RNAs without a Reverse Transcription Reaction', Biochemistry, 57, 39, 5641 - 5647.

- Ribas de Pouplana L 2018, 'Genetic code and metabolism: The perpetual waltz.', Journal of Biological Chemistry, 293(49):19157-19158.

- Silva J, Aivio S, Knobel PA, Bailey LJ, Casali A, Vinaixa M, Garcia-Cao I, Coyaud E, Jourdain AA, Perez-Ferreros P, Rojas AM, Antolin-Fontes A, Samino-Gené S, Raught B, González-Reyes A, Ribas Pouplana L, Doherty AJ, Yanes O & Stracker TH 2018, ' EXD2 governs germ stem cell homeostasis and lifespan by promoting mitoribosome integrity and translation.', Nature Cell Biology, 20, 2, 162.

- Arguello RJ, Reverendo M, Mendes A, Camosseto V, Torres AG, Ribas de Pouplana L, van de Pavert SA, Gatti E & Pierre P 2018, 'SunRiSE - measuring translation elongation at single-cell resolution by means of flow cytometry', Journal Of Cell Science, 131, 10, UNSP jcs214346.

- Charlton MH, Aleksis R, Saint-Leger A, Gupta A, Loza E, Ribas de Pouplana L, Kaula I, Gustina D, Madre M, Lola D, Jaudzems K, Edmund G, Randall CP, Kime L, O'Neill AJ, Goessens W, Jirgensons A & Finn PW 2018, 'N-Leucinyl Benzenesulfonamides as Structurally Simplified Leucyl-tRNA Synthetase Inhibitors', Acs Medicinal Chemistry Letters, 9, 2, 84 - 88.