Scientific sessions, CRG Group Leader Seminars
Design of Biological Systems Group, Systems Biology Programme, CRG
Whole cell model, are we there?
Recently, the group of Markus Covert developed the first ‘whole-cell’ model for M. genitalium, providing a new tool to study cell physiology, predict the impact of gene depletions and over-expression on growth and for synthetic biology engineering projects. Also this year we have seen groups in the USA advocating the development of whole cell models for eukaryotic cells. Here we will discuss the potential and limitations of Whole-cell models using the genome-reduced bacterium M. pneumoniae as an example.
Luis Serrano was born in 1959 in Madrid, Spain and studied Biochemistry at the University Complutense in the same city. After a PhD in celular biology he moved to the UK with Prof. A.R. Fersht where he worked in the field of protein folding. In 1993 he moved to the EMBL in Heidelberg as a group leader working in the fields of protein folding and design. In 2001 he became the head of the structural and computational biology programme at the EMBL and the interests of his group shifted into the emerging area of systems biology. In 2007 he went back to the center for genomic regulation (CRG) in Spain to head the EMBL-CRG systems biology programme as well as become vicedirector of the institute, and later directir. He has published more than 300 articles in international journals as well as is the scientific founder of four biotech companies. He is an EMBO member and has received the Mari Curie Excellence award, and two ERC advanced grants. His group is currently working in the fields of Systems and synthetic biology, focused on signal transduction in eukaryotes and in the redesign of small bacteria for medical purposes.