Lluís Ribas de Pouplana

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

– Picchioni D, Antolin-Fontes A, Camacho N, Schmitz C, Pons-Pons A, Rodriguez-Escriba M, Machallekidou A, Nur Guler M, Siatra P, Carretero-Junquera M, Serrano A, Hovde SL, Knobel PA, Novoa EM, Sola-Vilarrubias M, Kaguni LS, Stracker TH & Ribas de Pouplana L 2019, ‘Mitochondrial Protein Synthesis and mtDNA Levels Coordinated through an Aminoacyl-tRNA Synthetase Subunit’, Cell Reports, 27, 1, 40 – +.

– Torres AG, Reina O, Stephan-Otto Attolini C & Ribas de Pouplana L 2019, ‘Differential expression of human tRNA genes drives the abundance of tRNA-derived fragments’, Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences Of The United States Of America, 116, 17, 8451 – 8456.

– Yang P, Beltramo DM, Ribas de Pouplana L, Walter Soria N & Gabriel Torres A 2019, ‘Loss of the tRNA(Lys)CUU encoding gene, Chr-11 tRNA-Lys-CUU, is not associated with Type 2 diabetes mellitus’, Biomarkers In Medicine, 13, 4, 259 – 266.

– Roura Frigole H, Camacho N, Castellvi Coma M, Fernandez-Lozano C, Garcia-Lema J, Rafels-Ybern A, Canals A, Coll M & Ribas de Pouplana L 2019, ‘tRNA deamination by ADAT requires substrate-specific recognition mechanisms and can be inhibited by tRFs’, Rna, 25, 5, 607 – 619.