Institut de Biologie StructuraleGrenoble / France

Contact person(s) related to this article / Vivès Romain

the SAGAG-Vivès team

Head of team : Romain Vivès

Scientific activity of the SAGAG-Vivès team

Our team focuses on post-synthetic mechanisms regulating structure and activity of heparan sulfate (HS), and notably sulfatases of the Sulf family.
HS participates to major cellular processes through their ability to bind and modulate a wide array of signaling proteins. HS/ligands interactions occur through saccharide domains (termed S-domains) of specific sulfation pattern, present within the polysaccharide. Assembly of such functional domains is orchestrated by a complex biosynthesis machinery and their structure is further regulated at the cell surface by post-synthetic modifying enzymes, including extracellular sulfatases of the Sulf family. Sulfs specifically target HS S-domains and catalyze the selective removal of 6-O-sulfate groups, which are required for the recognition of many proteins. Although structurally subtle, these modifications have great functional consequences, and Sulfs have emerged as critical regulators of HS activity, in physiological processes such as embryogenesis and tissue regeneration, and in diseases such as cancer.
Our objectives are to study the structure of these enzymes, their mode of action and substrate specificities, to clarify this critical regulatory mechanism of HS biological functions, and to provide a structural basis for the development of novel therapeutic approaches targeting the Sulfs.

SAGAG Vivès : Sulfs catalyze the processive and orientated 6-O-desulfation of HS
Analysis of HSulf2-treated heparin oligosaccharide by Mass Spectrometry, NMR and HS sequencing.


The SAGAG-Vivès team is recruiting !

We are opening a 18-24 month position for an engineer. He/She will be in charge of this multidisciplinary project, which involves the production of recombinant proteins (in eukaryotic and prokaryotic expression systems), the preparation and screening of oligosaccharide substrate libraries using functional assay (SPR, enzyme assays…) and the functional analysis of Sulf activity using cellular assays (proliferation, migration…).

More information....

News (archives)

More news....

Team members


  • Evelyne Gout (IE CNRS)
  • Yoann Crétinon (PhD student)
  • Rubal Ravinder (collab. CERMAV, PhD student)
  • Romain Vivès (DR CNRS)

Alumni (since 2014)

  • Rana El Masri (PhD student)
  • Gaël Méli-Duthoit (BTS student)
  • -* Mayssa Ghaddar (Master 2)
  • Zahra al Oula Hassoun (Master 2), currently PhD student (Liège, Belgium).
  • Elisa Tournebize (Master 1), currently working (SANOFI-Pasteur, Lyon).
  • Hugo Fumat (Licence 3)
  • Elodie Henriet (CDD ingénieur), currently PhD student (Orleans, France).
  • Adrien Laroche (Licence 3)
  • Amal Seffouh (thèse), currently post-doc (Montreal, Canada).


ANR, UGA, Glyco@Alps...

Scientific networks

National scientific collaborations

  • Dr. D. Bonnaffé, ICMMO, Orsay
  • Dr. Y. Bourne, AFMB, Marseille
  • Dr. R. Daniel, LAMBE, Université d’Evry-Val d’Essonne
  • Dr. O. Filhol-Cochet, CEA-BIG, Grenoble
  • Dr. S. Halila, CERMAV, Grenoble
  • Dr. B. Horvat, ENS, Lyon
  • Dr. B. Huard, IAB, Grenoble
  • Dr. C. le Narvor, ICMMO, Orsay

International scientific collaborations

  • Dr. S. Ali, Newcastle University, UK
  • Dr. K. Dobra , University of Stockholm, Sweden
  • Dr. E. Schmidt, University of Colorado, USA
  • Dr. J. Van den Born, University of Groningen, the Netherlands
  • Dr. X. Yue, Louisiana State University, USA

The GDR « Gagosciences »

Romain Vivès is coordinator of the GDR CNRS3739 « Gagosciences ». This GDR has been created to federate French research teams working on GAGs within a structured network gathering complementary expertise. The aim of the GDR GAG is to promote multidisciplinary research in glycoscience within 3 major disciplinary fields : biology, chemistry and methodological developments.

More information...



Romain Vivès is member of the executive committee of the Glyco@Alps IDEX-UGA program (coordinator of WP2). Glyco@Alps explores the fascinating structural diversity and complexity of sugars, including those found in the Alpine biodiversity, and focuses on their exploitation for biopharmaceuticals, medical diagnostics, personalized medicine, materials, environmental sustainability and innovative bio-industries. With the involvement of around 100 scientists of different domains, Glyco@Alps will highlight the University Grenoble Alpes as the first glycoscience center in France.

En savoir plus....


Recent publications

HS and Inflammation : A Potential Playground for the Sulfs ?
Rana El Masri, Yoann Crétinon, Evelyne Gout, Romain R Vivès
Frontiers in Immunology, 2020, <10.3389/fimmu.2020.00570>

MASP-2 Is a Heparin-Binding Protease ; Identification of Blocking Oligosaccharides
Ditmer Talsma, Felix Poppelaars, Wendy Dam, Anita Meter-Arkema, Romain R Vivès, Peter Gál, Geert-Jan Boons, Pradeep Chopra, Annamaria Naggi, Marc Seelen, Stephan Berger, Mohamed Daha, Coen Stegeman, Jacob van den Born
Frontiers in Immunology, 2020, <10.3389/fimmu.2020.00732>

Loss of endothelial sulfatase-1 after experimental sepsis attenuates subsequent pulmonary inflammatory responses
Kaori Oshima, Xiaorui Han, Yilan Ouyang, Rana El Masri, Yimu Yang, Sarah Haeger, Sarah Mcmurtry, Trevor Lane, Pavel Davizon-Castillo, Fuming Zhang, Xinping Yue, Romain R Vivès, Robert Linhardt, Eric Schmidt
American Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology, 2019, <10.1152/ajplung.00175.2019>

A microscale double labelling of GAG oligosaccharides compatible with enzymatic treatment and mass spectrometry
Przybylski C, Bonnet V, Vivès RR
Chem Commun (Camb), 2019, <10.1039/c9cc00254e>

Substrate binding mode and catalytic mechanism of human heparan sulfate d-glucuronyl C5 epimerase
Debarnot C, Monneau YR, Roig-Zamboni V, Delauzun V, Le Narvor C, Richard E, Hénault J, Goulet A, Fadel F, Vivès RR, Priem B, Bonnaffé D, Lortat-Jacob H, Bourne Y
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2019, <10.1073/pnas.1818333116>

Heparan sulfate in chronic kidney diseases : Exploring the role of 3-O-sulfation
Ferreras L, Moles A, Situmorang GR, El Masri R, Wilson IL, Cooke K, Thompson E, Kusche-Gullberg M, Vivès RR, Sheerin NS, Ali S.
Biochim Biophys Acta Gen Subj, 2019, 1863(5):839-848. <10.1016/j.bbagen.2019.02.009>

Expression and purification of recombinant extracellular sulfatase HSulf-2 allows deciphering of enzyme sub-domain coordinated role for the binding and 6-O-desulfation of heparan sulfate
Seffouh A, El Masri R, Makshakova O, Gout E, Hassoun ZEO, Andrieu JP, Lortat-Jacob H, Vivès RR.
Cell Mol Life Sci. 2019 <10.1007/s00018-019-03027-2>

Mass spectrometry analysis of the human endosulfatase Hsulf-2
Seffouh I, Przybylski C, Seffouh A, El Masri R, Vivès RR, Gonnet F, Daniel R.
Biochem Biophys Rep, 2019, 18:100617.

A proliferation-inducing ligand-mediated anti-inflammatory response of astrocytes in multiple sclerosis
Baert L, Benkhoucha M, Popa N, Ahmed MC, Manfroi B, Boutonnat J, Sturm N, Raguenez G, Tessier M, Casez O, Marignier R, Ahmadi M, Broisat A, Ghezzi C, Rivat C, Sonrier C, Hahne M, Baeten D, Vives RR, Lortat-Jacob H, Marche PN, Schneider P, Lassmann HP, Boucraut J, Lalive PH, Huard B.
Ann Neurol., 2019, 85:406-420. <10.1002/ana.25415>

Genetic and enzymatic characterization of 3-O-sulfotransferase SNPs associated with Plasmodium falciparum parasitaemia
Ngoc Thy Nguyen, Romain R Vivès, Magali Torres, Vincent Delauzun, Els Saesen, Veronique Roig-Zamboni, Hugues Lortat-Jacob, Pascal Rihet, Yves Bourne
Glycobiology, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2018, 〈10.1093/glycob/cwy038〉

A jasmonic acid derivative improves skin healing and induces changes in proteoglycan expression and glycosaminoglycan structure
Elodie Henriet, Sibylle Jäger, Christian Tran, Philippe Bastien, Jean-François Michelet, Anne-Marie Minondo, Florian Formanek, Maria Dalko-Csiba, Hugues Lortat-Jacob, Lionel Breton, Romain R Vivès
BBA - General Subjects, Elsevier, 2017, 1861 (9), pp.2250-2260. 〈10.1016/j.bbagen.2017.06.006〉

High sodium diet converts renal proteoglycans into pro-inflammatory mediators in rats
Ryanne S. Hijmans, Pragyi Shrestha, Sarpong Ka, Saleh Yazdani, Rana El Masri, Wilhelmina H. A. De Jong, Gerjan Navis, Romain R Vivès, Jacob van Den Born
PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2017, 12 (6), pp.e0178940. 〈10.1371/journal.pone.0178940. eCollection 2017〉

Solution structure of CXCL13 and heparan sulfate binding show that GAG binding site and cellular signalling rely on distinct domains
Yoan Monneau, Lingjie Luo, Nehru Viji Sankaranarayanan, Balaji Nagarajan, Romain R Vivès, Françoise Baleux, Umesh R. Desai, Fernando Arenzana-Seidedos, Hugues Lortat-Jacob
Open Biology, Royal Society, 2017, 7, pp.170133. 〈10.1098/rsob.170133〉

The "in and out" of glucosamine 6-O-sulfation : the 6th sense of heparan sulfate.
Rana El Masri, Amal Seffouh, Hugues Lortat-Jacob, Romain R Vivès

Glycoconjugate Journal, Springer Verlag, 2017, 34 (3), pp.285-298. 〈10.1007/s10719-016-9736-5〉

Heparan sulfate-dependent enhancement of henipavirus infection.
Cyrille Mathieu, Kévin P Dhondt, Marie Châlons, Stéphane Mély, Hervé Raoul, Didier Negre, François-Loïc Cosset, Denis Gerlier, Romain R Vivès, Branka Horvat
mBio, American Society for Microbiology, 2015, 6 (2), pp.e02427

Langerin-heparin interaction : two binding sites for small and large ligands as revealed by a combination of NMR spectroscopy and cross-linking mapping experiments.
Juan C Muñoz-García, Eric Chabrol, Romain R Vivès, Aline Thomas, José L De Paz, Javier Rojo, Anne Imberty, Franck Fieschi, Pedro M Nieto, Jesus Angulo
Journal of the American Chemical Society, American Chemical Society, 2015, 137 (12), pp.4100-10

Syndecan-1 alters heparan sulfate composition and signaling pathways in malignant mesothelioma
Ghazal Heidari-Hamedani, Romain R Vivès, Amal Seffouh, Nikolaos A Afratis, Arie Oosterhof, Toin H Van Kuppevelt, Nikos K Karamanos, Muzaffer Metintas, Anders Hjerpe, Katalin Dobra, Tünde Szatmári
Cellular Signalling, Elsevier, 2015, 〈10.1016/j.cellsig.2015.07.017〉

Syndecan-1 alters heparan sulfate composition and signaling pathways in malignant mesothelioma .
Ghazal Heidari-Hamedani, Romain R Vivès, Amal Seffouh, Nikolaos A Afratis, Arie Oosterhof, Toin H Van Kuppevelt, Nikos K Karamanos, Muzaffer Metintas, Anders Hjerpe, Katalin Dobra, Tünde Szatmári
Cellular Signalling, Elsevier, 2015, 27 (10), pp.2054-67