Aims of the course and expected impact for young researchers

The course aims at training young researchers in the combined use of data from various structural techniques, such as SAXS, X-ray diffraction or EM, together with NMR data to achieve a deeper understanding of the structural properties of macromolecular systems, from individual proteins to macromolecular adducts. We will demonstrate various methods based on the integration of data from different structural techniques for the study of adducts between biological macromolecules, of protein-ligand interactions as well as of multi-domain proteins.

This INSTRUCT course will introduce and make extensive use of user-friendly e-Science portals to facilitate the adoption of the methods and techniques by the participants in their everyday work. In particular, we will exploit the web-based, cloud-enabled services of the WeNMR and West-Life e-infrastructures, also in collaboration with the European Grid Initiative (EGI). West-Life is a H2020 EU project. The hands-on sessions will allow the students to try the methods on either pre-packaged or their own research data. The course will address state-of-the-art tools and facilities.

Outline of course contents

NOTE: the course will start on Monday 19th just after lunch and will close on Friday 23rd around lunch time.
  • Model building in electron maps
  • Cryo-EM analysis of biomolecular assemblies
  • Comparison and integration of techniques
  • Data-driven docking
  • Information-driven docking
  • Design of small-molecule ligands
  • Bio-SAXS
  • MD refinement and simulations
  • SAXS and NMR methods for IDPs
  • Structure validation

Hands-on practicals on most of the above topics will be available. The practicals will be adjusted also depending on the availability of data, training needs and expertises from the attendees

Case studies will be provided via the web for re-examination also at the home lab.

Lecturers and Tutors
  • Alexandre Bonvin (University of Utrecht/Instruct-NL)
  • Jose Maria Carazo (I2PC/INSTRUCT-ES)
  • Sonia Covaceuszach (CNR Trieste/INSTRUCT-IT)
  • Matteo De March (ELETTRA, Trieste/INSTRUCT-IT)
  • Doriano Lamba (CNR Naples/INSTRUCT-IT)
  • Silvia Onesti (ELETTRA, Trieste/INSTRUCT-IT)
  • Roberta Pierattelli (CERM/INSTRUCT-IT)
  • Antonio Rosato (CIRMMP/INSTRUCT-IT)


Our simplified application process makes it very easy for you to take the next step to joining us.
Applicants should send to the lead contact (see below) by email a short CV and letter of motivation explaining how they will benefit from attending this course.

Lead Contact: Dr. Antonio Rosato - rosato AT

Deadline for application: November 15th, 2017

Up to twenty places are available. If necessary, participants will be selected among all applicants taking into account the following criteria: previous experience in the field of structure biology; background in computater science; gender balance; relevance of current research to the course contents.

INSTRUCT-ERIC is providing support to attendees from countries that formally joined INSTRUCT-ERIC

Registration fee

The registration fee for selected participants is 300 euros; the registration fee is reduced to 100 euros for attendees from countries that formally joined INSTRUCT-ERIC (
The fee includes lunches and coffee breaks during the course, plus the social dinner.