Alfredo Castello completed his PhD at the CBMSO Madrid, studying the interaction between RNA viruses and the host RNA metabolism. In 2009, he joined the laboratory of Matthias Hentze at EMBL (Heidelberg) as a postdoctoral fellow, where he generated the first comprehensive atlas of cellular RNA-binding proteins. In 2014, Castello started his own laboratory at the Department of Biochemistry (University of Oxford) funded by an MRC Career Development Award to study the role of RNA-binding proteins in HIV biological cycle.
RNA-binding proteins are essential for the metabolism of RNA. This is also true for viruses which genome is RNA. We thus hypothesise that the dependence of viruses on this family of cellular proteins can represent an "Achilles heel" that we plan to exploit as novel therapeutic strategies.