M.D., 1985, Catholic University School of Medicine, Rome, Italy.
Research Interests
We are interested in the structure, function and engineering of trypsin-like proteases and their zymogen forms. The main focus of the lab is on thrombin and prothrombin as key components of the blood coagulation system. Our experimental approach includes kinetics, thermodynamics, site-directed mutagenesis, X-ray structural biology and single molecule spectroscopy.
Recent Publications
  • Rational design of protein C activators.
    Barranco-Medina S, Murphy M, Pelc L, Chen Z, Di Cera E, and Pozzi N. Sci Rep. (2017) Mar 15 [Epub ahead of print].
  • Molecular mechanisms of enzyme activation by monovalent cations.
    Gohara DW, Di Cera E. J Biol Chem. (2016) 291(40):20840-20848.
  • Costimulatory effects of an immunodominant parasite antigen paradoxically prevent induction of optimal CD8 T Cell protective immunity.
    Eickhoff CS, Zhang X, Vasconcelos JR, Motz RG, Sullivan NL, O'Shea K, Pozzi N, Gohara DW, Blase JR, Di Cera E, Hoft DF. PLoS Pathos. (2016) 12(9):e1005896.
  • Thrombin cleavage of plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 inhibits cytoadherence.
    Gillrie MR, Renaux B, Russell-Goldman E, Avril M, Brazier AJ, Mihara K, Di Cera E, Milner DA Jr, Hollenberg MD, Smith JD, Ho M. MBio. (2016) 7(5):e01120.
  • Structural architecture of prothrombin in solution revealed by single molecule spectroscopy.
    Pozzi N, Bystranowska D, Zuo X, Di Cera E. J Biol Chem. (2016) 291(35):18107-18116.
  • Dual effect of histone H4 on prothrombin activation.
    Pozzi N, Di Cera E. J Thromb Haemost. (2016) 14(9):1814-1818.
  • Loop electrostatics asymmetry modulates the preexisting conformational equilibrium in thrombin.
    Pozzi N, Zerbetto M, Acquasaliente L, Tescari S, Frezzato D, Polimeno A, Gohara DW, Di Cera E, De Filippis V. Biochemistry. (2016) 55(28):3984-3994.
  • Potassium and the K+/H+ exchanger Kha1p promote binding of copper to ApoFet3p multi-copper ferroxidase.
    Wu X, Kim H, Seravalli J, Barycki JJ, Hart PJ, Gohara DW, Di Cera E, Jung WH, Kosman DJ, Lee J. J Biol Chem. (2016) 291(18):9796-9806.
  • Data publication with the structural biology data grid supports live analysis.
    Meyer PA, Socias S, et al. Nat Commun. (2016) 7:10882.
  • How the linker connecting the two Kringles influences activation and conformational plasticity of prothrombin.
    Pozzi N, Chen Z, Di Cera E. J Biol Chem. (2016) 291(12):6071-6082.