Research Interests

Our research is focused on the development of computational methods that combine experimental data with bioinformatics and modelling techniques to characterise the structure of macromolecular machines. Structural models are further analysed to understand their function and design new experiments. The group is particularly interested in applying these methods using data from cryo electron microscopy and mass spectrometry. In collaboration with experimentalists, specific systems we currently work on include herpesvirus sub-complexes, bacterial secretion systems, ligand-gated ion channels, and microtubule complexes. 

Selected recent publications

  1. Locke J, Joseph AP, et al. “Molecular basis of human kinesin-8 function and inhibition.” Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 114:E9539, 2017.

  2. Joseph AP, et al. “Integrative modelling of cellular assemblies.” Curr Opin Struct Biol 46:102, 2017.

  3. Ashford P, Hernandez A, et al. “HVint: A strategy for identifying novel protein-protein interactions in herpes simplex virus type 1”. Mol Cell Proteomics 15:2939, 2016.

  4. Bullock JMA, Schwab J, et al. “The importance of non-accessible crosslinks and solvent accessible surface distance in modelling proteins with restraints from crosslinking mass spectrometry.” Mol Cell Proteomics, 2016, 15:10.1074.

  5. Joseph AP, Malhotra S, et al. “Refinement of atomic models in high resolution EM reconstructions using Flex-EM and local assessment.” Methods 100:42, 2016

  6. Pandurangan AP, Vasishtan D, et al. “γ-TEMPy: simultaneous fitting of components in 3D-EM maps of their assembly using a genetic algorithm”. Structure, 23:2365, 2015.


Topf Lab


Institute of Structural and Molecular Biology @ Birkbeck / UCL 

Crystallography/Biological Sciences, Birkbeck

University of London

Malet Street

London WC1E 7HX


Phone:  +44 (0)20 7079 0886