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Queen Mary in Malta

Dr Rosalin Bonetta Valentino

Lecturer in Biomedical Science

Room Number: Malta Campus


Dr Rosalin Bonetta Valentino received her B.Sc. (Hons.) degree in Biology and Chemistry in 2011 and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry in 2015, both from the University of Malta. Dr Bonetta Valentino then pursued two post-docs at the Centre of Molecular Medicine and Biobanking, University of Malta between June 2015 and August 2019. During her PhD and post-docs, she was awarded a number of grants by the Embassy of France to Malta, CNRS, the Malta Council of Science and Technology, The Biochemical Society, COST Actions, TrainMalta and the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery (University of Malta), in order to carry out research at several European research institutions. The latter include the Commission of Atomic and Alternative Energies (France), University of Leeds, the Diamond Synchrotron Light Source (UK), the Medical University of Vienna, University of Santiago de Compostela (Spain), the Polish Academy of Science in Krakow and the University of Cambridge. She has also been teaching biochemistry and structural bioinformatics as a casual lecturer at the University of Malta since 2014. In September 2019, she joined Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry at the QMUL Malta campus as a lecturer in Biomedical Sciences. Dr Bonetta Valentino is also an executive member of the Malta Chamber of Scientists since 2016.


  • Specialised in the fields of Biochemistry/Cell biology/Physiology
  • Malta co-lead for intercalated degrees
  • Co-lead for Metabolism 1 and Metabolism 2 modules
  • MedPro supervisor for first and second year students
  • Involved in contributing to lectures, PBLs and practicals in FunMed, Met1, Cr1, BB1, BB2, HD1 and HD2


Research Interests:

Dr Bonetta Valentino's research involves physico-chemical characterisation of MnSOD mutant proteins via enzyme assays, EPR, thermostability studies and X-ray crystallography studies to determine protein structures. EPR studies were carried at CEA, Saclay, while X-ray crystallography was performed at the University of Leeds and the Diamond Synchrotron Light Source, UK. Studies also involves adding different mutants of SOD exogenously to K562 leukaemia cells, to observe effects of SODs on cell proliferation. Her current research involves molecular dynamics simulations of proteins and structural bioinformatics of biomolecules. International collaborations in the field of computational biochemistry include the University of Santiago de Compostela, the Medical University of Vienna and the Polish Academy of Sciences, Krakow.



1. Bonetta, R, Valentino, G.  Machine learning techniques for protein function prediction. Proteins.  2020; 88: 397– 413.

2. Bonetta, R. Potential therapeutic applications of MnSODs and SOD-mimetics, Chem. Eur. J. 2018, 24, 5032, doi: 10.1002/chem.201704561.

3. Bonetta, R.; Ebejer, J.P.; Hunter, G. J.; Hunter, T. Role of Protein Structure in Drug Discovery. Xjenza, March 2017.

4. T. Hunter, Bonetta, R, A. Sacco, M. Vella, P. M. Sultana, C. H. Trinh, H. B. R. Fadia, T. Borowski, R. Garcia-Fandio, T. Stockner, G. J. Hunter, A Single Mutation is Sufficient to Modify the Metal Selectivity and Specificity of a Eukaryotic Manganese Superoxide Dismutase to Encompass Iron, Chem. Eur. J. 2018, 24, 5303.

5. Hunter, G. J.; Trinh, C. H.; Bonetta, R.; Stewart, E. E; Cabelli, D. E.; Hunter, T. (2015) “The structure of the Caenorhabditis elegans Manganese Superoxide Dismutase MnSOD-3-Azide complex" Protein Science Volume 24, Issue 11, November 2015, Pages: 1777-1788.

6. Kazarjan J, Vaher M, Hunter T, Kulp M, Hunter G, Bonetta, R, Farrugia D, Kaljurand M. Determination of metal content in superoxide dismutase enzymes by capillary electrophoresis. J Sep Sci, 2015.

7. Hunter G. J.; Vella, M.; Bonetta, R.; Farrugia, D.; Hunter. T. The Structure of Protein Molecules: In Celebration of the International Year of Crystallography, 2014. Xjenza, April 2014


8.  Bonetta, R., Hunter, G.J., Trinh, C.H. et al. Substitution of histidine 30 by asparagine in manganese superoxide dismutase alters biophysical properties and supports proliferation in a K562 leukemia cell line. Eur Biophys J 50, 571–585 (2021).

1. Bonetta, R.; Hunter, G. J.; Hunter, T. The family of Fe/Mn family of superoxide dismutase: structure, catalysis and therapeutic uses. In: Superoxide Dismutase (SOD): Sources, Therapeutic Uses and Health Benefits (edited by Nancy H. Phillips), Nova Science Publishing, September 2016.

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