General Description

The Vallone group focuses on the structural dynamics of heme proteins and work primarily with the time resolved X-ray diffraction and wide-angle x-ray scattering, spectroscopy and kinetics. They aim to determine the functional relevance of dynamics events and identify reaction intermediates. The group has contributed to crystallography and structure-function relationship of heme proteins.

Role and Commitment of key persons (including supervisors)

Beatrice Vallone, PhD, full professor. Structural biology and structural dynamics methods.
Carmelinda Savino, PhD. Research associate, crystallisation and data-analysis.
Linda Celeste Montemiglio, PostDoc, Protein crystallography and kinetics measurements, SAXS.
Giacomo Parisi, PhD Student. P450 cytochromes and WAXS.
Antonella Scaglione, PhD Student, Protein crystallography and SAXS.

Key Research Facilities and Infrastructure and Equipment

B. Vallone is coordinator of the CNR facility “Biocrystal Facility” (, the group is also equipped with continuous flow, rapid mixing, T-jump equipment and participates to projects with access to the time resolved beam line ID09B at ESRF.

PhD supervisor: Prof. Beatrice Vallone

SO = Scientific Objectives;
TO = Training Objectives.

SO1: Study structural changes in neuroglobin and P450s by time-resolved WAXS and XRD.
SO2: Develop tools for reaction triggering for time-resolved WAXS experiments.
SO3: Ultra-fast time-resolved diffraction studies of heme containing proteins.

TO1: Training in biochemical tools of protein production and mutation.
TO2: Training in advanced X-ray methods such as Laue diffraction, SFX and WAXS.
TO3: Training in the use of synchrotron and X-ray free electron laser radiation.

This ESR project focuses upon the structural dynamics of neuroglobin and bacterial P450 using both time-resolved WAXS and Laue diffraction. This research will involve training on protein engineering and crystal structural analysis. Emphasis will be given to the preparation of crystals suitable for time resolved diffraction and for trapping and detection of reaction intermediates in other heme proteins (e.g. Myoglobin, hemoglobin).

Involvement with other tasks: this ESR will participate in the design and execution of WAXS experiments on heme proteins an on folding study using temperature jumps.

Local Training: this ESR will be enrolled as a PhD student at the University of Rome, which offers courses in a chemistry, biochemistry and physics.

Prof. Beatrice Vallone, neuroglobin, P450s, WAXS, XRD, time-resolved WAXS, experiments, Ultra-fast time-resolved diffraction, heme, proteins, biochemistry, protein production, protein mutation, X-ray, Laue diffraction, SFX, WAXS, synchrotron, laser radiation, Cécile Exertier

Cécile Exertier

2012-2014 – Master Degree in Biochemistry and Structural Biology, Université Joseph Fourier, Grenoble, France.
2009-2012 – Bachelor Degree in Chemistry and Biology, Université Joseph Fourier, Grenoble, France.

Research projects
Structural basis of the antigenicity of the peptide-MHC complexes : Study of the specific recognition of the peptide MelanA by cytotoxic T Cell receptors using X-ray crystallography and Surface Plasmon Resonance (Master thesis – Institut de Biologie Structurale, Grenoble France).