Maria Marti Solano

Dr Maria Martí Solano


Maria is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Structural Studies Division of the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology.

Maria Marti Solano

After obtaining a PhD in Biomedicine at the Pompeu Fabra University of Barcelona (Spain) with the highest possible grade in 2015, under the joint supervision of Dr Manuel Pastor and Dr Jana Selent, Maria spent two years as a Postdoctoral Researcher in the group of Professor Peter Kolb at the Pharmaceutical Chemistry Department of the Philipps University Marburg (Germany).

In 2018, she joined Dr Madan Babu’s lab in the Structural Studies Division of the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge (UK). Since then, she has been working in s Systems Pharmacology project supported by two highly competitive postdoctoral fellowships from the Federation of Biochemical Societies (Long-Term Fellowship) and the EU Horizon 2020 Framework Programme (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship).

In the past, Maria has taught Structure-Based Drug Design to Biomedical Engineering and Pharmacy undergraduate students as well as acted as a reviewer for MSc and PhD theses in Bioinformatics and Pharmaceutical R&D. She is also a member of the Biochemical Society and an Associate Faculty Member of F1000Prime.

Research Interests

Maria’s work focuses on using computational biology methods to better understand G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). These receptors are widely distributed in our bodies to detect external signals such as odours, hormones or neurotransmitters and start appropriate responses inside our cells. Besides receiving such signals, these receptors are also targeted by the majority of drugs prescribed nowadays. When many of these drugs were discovered, however, there was no information available on how receptors were distributed in different tissues or how they differed in the population. This could help explain some of the side effects of current drugs or why individuals respond to some drugs differently. In her project, Maria is tackling these issues using a systems pharmacology approach that combines information on receptor genomics, structure, and signalling properties. This approach will help us understand how receptor distribution, and the way it changes in different individuals, can affect physiological and drug responses. This, in turn, can help foster more rational and personalized pharmacological treatments.

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