• Source: Scopus
  • Calculated based on number of publications stored in Pure and citations from Scopus

Research activity per year

Personal profile


BIO: Janine Brunner is since 2020 group leader at the VIB-VUB Center for Structural Biology leading the lab Structure and Function of Membrane Proteins and professor at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. She obtained her PhD in 2015 from the University of Zurich/Switzerland with structural and functional work on phospholipid scramblases in the TMEM16 family. It provided the first atomic insight into the architecture and working mechanism of Ca2+ activated phospholipid scramblases and contributed significant new concepts in this field. During postdoc stays at Universities of Zurich and Basel and the Paul-Scherrer Institute (ETH)/Switzerland she studied non-canonical lysosomal potassium channels that are associated with Parkinson’s disease by combining X-ray crystallography with electrophysiology.Her results have revealed how ion selectivity and gating is achieved in these newly discovered potassium channels.

Janine’s efforts advanced the understanding in several membrane protein classes and her work, published in Nature, Nature Communications, eLife, and Current Opinion in Structural Biology, has been referenced more than 460 times (source scopus). She was invited twice to give a talk at the New and Notable session, prestigious platforms at the Biophysics Society Annual Meeting and the European Biophysics Congress.

MISSION: The Brunner lab (started in 2020) is focusing on the structural biology of membrane proteins, and their functional characterization. With the major topic of membrane proteins in lipid transport and metabolism and their significance for membrane asymmetry we engage in a central theme of cell biology and aim to answer long-standing questions in lipid trafficking and signalling. The second theme covers structural biology and biophysics of ion channels implicated in lysosome physiology and pathological instances such as Parkinson’s disease. Her group is capitalizing from extensive experience in membrane protein biochemistry and structural biology and integrates additional methodologies such as patch-clamp electrophysiology and fluorescence microscopy to achieve a comprehensive understanding of the research subjects.

For more information: https://brunnerlab.sites.vib.be/en


External positions

Postdoc in the lab of Michel Steinmetz, Paul Scherrer Institute

Jan 2018Nov 2019

Postdoc in the lab of Timm Maier, University of Basel

Jan 2017Dec 2017

Postdoc in the lab of Raimund Dutzler, University of Zurich


PhD thesis in the Lab or Raimund Dutzler, University of Zurich



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