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Gisela Brändén


Department of Chemistry & Molecular
Visiting address
Medicinaregatan 9C
41390 Göteborg
Room number
Postal address
Box 462
40530 Göteborg

About Gisela Brändén

I am a structural biologist/biochemist with experience from pharmaceutical industry. I am leading a research group at the Department of Chemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Gothenburg.

Research: The focus of my research group is to study the structure, function and dynamics of membrane proteins. We use a combination of different biochemical and biophysical methods to describe proteins in detail as they work, including X-ray crystallography, absorbance spectroscopy, X-ray Scattering and X-ray Free Electron Laser (XFEL) coherent diffractive imaging. We put a lot of effort into development of time resolved synchrotron- and XFEL-based methods, including serial crystallography. Using these methods we investigate the energy converting systems of the cell, more specifically cytochrome oxidase of the respiratory chain and bacterial photosynthetic reaction center. In addition we use microtubules, the major constituent of the cytoskeleton, as a model system for XFEL imaging. I collaborate closely with MAX IV Laboratories on advancing synchrotron-based serial crystallography, and together with AstraZeneca we are interested in exploring the use of serial crystallography applied to pharmaceutical targets.

My other area of focus is structure-based drug design. In collaboration with AstraZeneca we study the membrane-bound protein MraY, essential for bacterial cell wall synthesis. As such, MraY is a very interesting target to overcome the acutely developing problem of antibiotic resistance. We describe how MraY interacts with different inhibitors, with the long-term goal to develop novel antibiotic compounds. I also have experience in structural studies of the cytochrome P450s, the main drug-metabolizing system in the body.

Link to Google scholar:

Teaching: I am course responsible for our second year biochemistry course KEM060 (15 hec) where I lecture on cell metabolism. In addition, I lecture on structure-based drug design on two of our advanced courses, KEM360 and BIO523.

Other: I am responsible for Outreach at the department (see and member of the Committee for Collaboration, Innovation and Internationalisation for the Faculty of Science. I am also member of the Docent Board for the faculty.

Group members: Cecilia Safari, PhD student Jenny Hering, PhD student Andreas Dunge, PhD student Swagatha Ghosh, postdoc Owens Uwangue, PhD student Doris Zoric, PhD student

PhD students to have graduated: Elin Dunevall (2019) ”Structural and Functional Studies of Membrane Proteins – For Future Development of Antimicrobial Drugs”

Funding: Swedish Research Council, Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research, Carl Trygger Foundation