Francesc Xavier Ruiz, PhD

Associate Research Professor


B.S. Biochemistry, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 2001
M.Sc. Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 2003
Ph.D. Enzymology, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 2010
Postdoc - Structural Biology & Drug Discovery, Institut de Génétique et de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, 2014
Postdoc - Structural Biology & Drug Discovery, CABM Rutgers University, 2018


Dr. Ruiz Figueras is a highly skilled scientist who has made significant scientific contributions to the fields of enzymology and structural biology studying the structure and function of human and viral proteins, especially HIV-1 reverse transcriptase and human aldo-keto reductases, with an emphasis on catalysis and inhibition for drug discovery. 

He received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in Spain in 2010, followed by a postdoctoral stay at the Institut de Génétique et de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire (France) in the lab of Dr. Alberto Podjarny. In March 2015, Dr. Ruiz Figueras was recruited to join as a postdoctoral associate to the Lab of Distinguished Professor Eddy Arnold at CABM Rutgers, followed by a Senior Researcher appointment in 2018 and his current position since 2019. 

Research Focus

Structure and Function of Human and Viral Proteins, with an emphasis on polymerases including HIV-1 reverse transcriptase and HIV-1 and SARS-CoV-2 polyprotein precursors

2011 European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) short term Fellowship

2013-2014 Postdoctoral Fellowship Fondation pour la Recherche Médicale (France),

2014 Selected attendee to the 47th Course of Erice International School of Crystallography: “Structural Basis of Pharmacology: Deeper Understanding of Drug Discovery through Crystallography”, Erice, Italy

2014 Contributed talk in the 23rd Congress and General Assembly of the International Union of                     Crystallography (IUCr 2014), Montreal, Canada

2018 Best poster presentation award in the HIV DART and Emerging Viruses meeting, Miami, FL, US

2022 New Jersey Health Foundation Research Grant



Topics Board and Guest Editor for the journal “Molecules” and Guest Editor for the journal “Viruses

Associate Editor of the journal “Frontiers in Molecular Biosciences” for the Structural Biology section

Gallego O, Ruiz X, Ardèvol A, et al. Structural basis for the high all-trans-retinaldehyde reductase activity of the tumor marker AKR1B10. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2007;104(52):20764-9.
Martinez-Zapien D, Ruiz F, Poirson J, et al. Structure of the E6/E6AP/p53 complex required for HPV-mediated degradation of p53. Nature. 2016;529(7587):541-5. doi:10.1038/nature16481.
Ruiz X, Hoang A, Das K, Arnold E. Structural Basis of HIV-1 Inhibition by Nucleotide-Competing Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitor INDOPY-1. Journal of medicinal chemistry. 2019;62(21):9996-10002. doi:10.1021/acs.jmedchem.9b01289.
Kang D, Ruiz X, Feng D, et al. Discovery and Characterization of Fluorine-Substituted Diarylpyrimidine Derivatives as Novel HIV-1 NNRTIs with Highly Improved Resistance Profiles and Low Activity for the hERG Ion Channel. Journal of medicinal chemistry. 2020;63(3):1298-1312. doi:10.1021/acs.jmedchem.9b01769.
Ruiz F, Arnold E. Evolving understanding of HIV-1 reverse transcriptase structure, function, inhibition, and resistance. Current opinion in structural biology. 2020;61:113-123. doi:10.1016/