Nissen Group


Nissen group - Structural and Functional Studies of Membrane Transporters in Brain


The Nissen group investigates molecular mechanisms of membrane transport processes and biomembrane structure. Activities are mainly focused on cryo-electron microscopy (Cryo-EM), protein crystallography, biochemistry, electrophysiology, and include also small-angle X-ray scattering and cryo-electron tomography. Main subjects of research concern membrane transporters involved with neurological and psychiatric disorders, i.e. P-type ATPase (Na,K-ATPase, Ca-ATPases, lipid flippases) and Na+ dependent transporters, but include also structure based drug discovery, protein engineering, and biomembrane suprastructures of neurons.

The main focus of our research is to investigate the membrane transporters involved with neurological and psychiatric disorders. The Na+, K+-ATPase is of particular interest, since many neurological disorders are linked to the function of this pump, such as function loss in the Na+,K+-ATPase that can lead to severe diseases such as familial hemiplegic migraine and rapid-onset Dystonia with Parkinsonism.

Several different methods are used to study membrane pumps in our research group, such as structural studies including use of nanodiscs, electrophysiology, and hypoxic conditions.

Research Areas: Membrane proteins, Membrane transport, Electron microscopy, Crystallography, Biochemistry, Drug discovery, Tomography 

A collection of P-type ATPase structures from the Nissen lab. Figure courtesy of Dr. Oleg Sitsel.

Available projects

The Nissen group currently has projects available for Master and PhD students.

See current research projects in the laboratory here (link opens pdf)

See overview of current study opportunities in the laboratory (link opens new page)

Please contact Group Leader Poul Nissen directly, if interested.

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