Chemistry of biological processes
Collège de France, Paris

Director: Professor Marc Fontecave

The research unit is connected to the Chemistry Department of the University Pierre et Marie Curie.

Access the site UPMC

The research projects of the laboratory join in the field of molecular chemistry, inorganic (coordination and organometallic chemistry) and biological chemistry (protein chemistry). They involve the implementation of skills in chemical, organic and inorganic, synthesis, in chemical analysis (electrochemistry in particular) and in catalysis, as well as in enzymology and in structural biology. An important activity of crystallization of proteins and determination of their three-dimensional structures leans on a platform of high technicality (glove boxes, robots, microscopes). The studied systems are complex enzymes which display interesting and original structural organizations and chemical reactivities (enzymatic mechanisms). They have potential
applications in particular in the field of the health, energy and biocatalysis. Few examples of projects are those concerning natural and artificial hydrogenases (project 1), enzymes (flavoproteins and metalloenzymes) involved in the biosynthesis of ubiquinone (project 2) or enzymes of maturation of nucleic acids (project 3). These systems, more particularly their active sites, constitute unique sources of inspiration for the synthetic chemists. This biomimetic or bioinspired chemistry approach allows
developping original catalysts, in particular for applications in the field of the new energy technologies. The objective is to work out electrodes and photoelectrodes for technological devices (electrolyzers coupled to solar panels and photoelectrochemical cells) for storage of renewable energies (solar) through the (photo) decomposition of water into hydrogen and oxygen or through the reduction of the CO2 in energy-dense carbon molecules (project 1).

Research project 1

Artificial Photosynthesis: transformation of water and carbon
dioxide into fuels

Group leaders: Marc Fontecave, Caroline Mellot-Draznieks

Permanent staff involved in the project: Caroline Mellot-Draznieks (DR2 CNRS), Yun Xu-Li (IR HC CNRS), Philippe Simon (IR2 CNRS), Maria Gomez-Mingot (IR CDF), Ludovic Pecqueur (IR CDF), Tran Ngoc Huan (IR CDF) et Marc Fontecave (Pr CDF)

Engineers under project contractJose Guillermo Rivera de la Cruz

PhD and post-docsCharles Creissen, Youven Benséghir, Silvia Pugliese, Elli Vichou, Albert Solé Daura, Florian Lhostis, Raphael Labidi, Iulia Cocosilla, Alessandro Perazio, Hong Phong Duong, Didier Ehrenfeld

Project 1 overview  [544.0Ko]

Research project 2

Multi-protein complex for ubiquinone biosynthesis: biochemical
and structural studies

Group leaders: Marc Fontecave, Murielle Lombard

Permanent staff involved in the project: Murielle Lombard (CRCN, CNRS), Philippe Simon (IR CNRS), Ludovic Pecqueur (IR CDF), Bruno Faivre (IE, CDF) et Marc Fontecave (Pr CDF) 

Students (PhD and post-docs): Chau-Duy-Tam Vo

Project 2 overview  [459.0Ko]

Research project 3

tRNA maturation enzymes

Group leaders: Béatrice Golinelli-Pimpaneau, Djemel Hamdane

Permanent staff involved in the project: Béatrice Golinelli-Pimpaneau (DR2 CNRS), Djemel Hamdane (CR1 CNRS), Murielle Lombard (CRCN, CNRS), Ludovic Pecqueur (IR CDF), Bruno Faivre (IE, CDF) et Marc Fontecave (Pr CDF)

Students (PhD and post-docs): Jingjing Zhou, Paolo Zecchin, Mohamed Atta, Marouane Libiad

Project 3 overview  [601.0Ko]

Team Members

Team members