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Thomas Boesen

Biological Microcables, Bacterial Pathogenesis and Neurotransmitter Transport

Focus area

Our research is focused on the three major research areas: Bacterial nanowires and microcables, bacterial pathogenesis factors and neurotransmitter sodium symporters (NSSs). The aim of the research is to determine and analyse the three-dimensional structures of proteins and protein complexes involved in these processes.

The structures determined are used to explain the molecular details and chemical basis for the function of the involved proteins. This structural knowledge is of fundamental importance for answering the following questions:

  • How can we explain electronic conductivity in biological cable structures at the molecular level?
  • Which factors produced by bacterial pathogens cause disease and what is the structural and functional basis for this?
  • What is the molecular mechanism behind neurotransmitter clearing in synapses by human NSS proteins such as the serotonin transporter?

Answering these questions may lead to new bio/nano-electronics based on biological molecules, structure-based design of novel anti-microbials and a better understanding of how antidepressants such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors work at the molecular level.

The structural work is based on small-angle X-ray scattering, electron microscopy and X-ray crystallography, but additional structural and functional techniques such as circular dichroism, atomic force microscopy and microscale thermophoresis are used e.g. through collaborations with other laboratories. Research projects in the above areas are currently ongoing and people interested are welcome to contact me.

The group is also part of the “Centre for Membrane Pumps in Cells and Disease – PUMPKIN” funded by the National Danish Research Foundation and the “Centre for Structural Biology”.

Available projects

There are currently projects available for Master and PhD students. Please contact Thomas Boesen directly for more information, if interested.

Thomas Boesen is Affiliated Researcher to Poul Nissen's group

Poul Nissen, far right, with the Titan Krios microscope at Aarhus University. Photo: Poul Nissen.

2018.12.19 | Research news

Get insight into Cryo-EM in new feature from the Nordic EMBL Partnership

Cryo-electron microscopy, or cryo-EM, has been around since the 1970s, but it’s only in recent years that, thanks to technological advances, the technique has become more accessible. Poul Nissen, Director of DANDRITE, and Bernt Eric Uhlin, Founding Director of MIMS until October 2018, are interviewed about the current cryo-EM setups available in…

2018.03.05 | PoulNissen

New laboratory technician at DANDRITE

Tanja Klymchuk is now affiliated as shared laboratory technician at DANDRITE, sharing her time between the group's of Poul Nissen, Hanne Poulsen, Magnus Kjærgaard, Thomas Boesen, and Assoc. prof. Bjørn Pedersen at the Dept. Molecular Biology and Genetics. Tanja will, together with technician Anna Marie Nielsen, take over some of the duties and…

Thomas Boesen

2017.04.19 | Research news

Thomas Boesen participates in a new Danish National Research Foundation Centre

Together with Lars Peter Nielsen (Center Director), Nils Risgaard-Petersen and Andreas Schramm from Bioscience, Elena Ferapontova, iNANO and Filip Meysman, AIAS, Thomas Boesen from MBG receive DKK 56 million for the Center for Electromicrobiology.