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Rui D. M. Travasso

+351 239 410 681

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Centro de Fisica Computacional
Universidade de Coimbra
Rua Larga
3004-516 COIMBRA

Research Interests

Angiogenesis modeling

Sprouting angiogenesis is the process by which new blood vessels grow from existing ones. It is an ubiquitous phenomenon in the life of higher organisms, playing a pivotal role in diverse processes from wound healing to morphogenesis, diabetic retinopathy, or even tumor growth.

We are developing a phase field model to describe the growth of capillaries in a tissue in hypoxia.

The capillary endothelial cells proliferation and migration are directed by the concentration gradient of VEGF. This factor is produced by the oxygen deprived tissue cells. The model also displays the anastomosis of the capillaries.

In collaboration with Aurora Hernandez-Machado, Mario Castro and Eugenia Corvera.

Mechanisms of Protein Folding

Proteins are linear polymers of aminoacids responsible for catalising specific reactions in the the cell. This high specificity of proteins towards particular reactions in the cell is the result of an evolution process on the design of each protein active native state. In nature this native state corresponds to the minimum free energy conformation (or ensemble of conformations) for each protein. I study of the mechanisms involved in the process of proteins spontaneously achieving the native state from the low structured denatured state.

We theoretically investigate and characterize the transition state of the folding process as a function of the native contact order, while keeping close contact with current experimental thechniques, helping to interpret their results and approaches.

This work is done in collaboration with Patricia Faisca.


Last updated 22-Mar-2009