Physics of Membrane Transport
Single Molecules
Single Particles

Ulrich F. Keyser et al.

Our publications


Our main research is focused on understanding all transport processes through membranes of both biological and technological origin. Specifically, we are interested in the physics of ions, macromolecules and particles in confined geometries at the single molecule/-particle level. We thrive to exert maximum control over all parameters in the experiment using techniques like: DNA (origami) self-assembly, optical trapping, particle tracking, fluorescence microscopy, electrophysiology, or micro-/nanofluidics. In parallel, we are always improving and developing new measurement techniques based on a combination of single molecule approaches. Our interdisciplinary team combines people with expertise in physics, physical chemistry, biochemistry/biology, and micro-/nanofabrication.

We are always looking for enthusiastic students and postdocs. If you are interested in working with us, you can find more information TENTATIVE projects below.

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Recent Publications

K. Goepfrich, T. Zettl, A. E. C. Meijering, S. Hernandez-Ainsa, S. Kocabey, T. Liedl, and U. F. Keyser.
DNA-Tile Structures Induce Ionic Currents through Lipid Membranes
Nano Letters
, 15(5):3134-3138, 2015. [ DOI | http ]

A. Seifert, K Goepfrich, J. Burns, N. Fertig, U. F. Keyser, and S. Howorka.
Bilayer-spanning DNA nanopores with voltage-switching between open and closed state
ACS nano
, 9(2):1117-1126, 2015. [ DOI | http ]

N. A. W. Bell and U. F. Keyser.
Specific Protein Detection using Designed DNA Carriers and Nanopores
, 137(5):2035-2041, 2015. [ DOI | http ]

C.-Y. Li, E. A. Hemmig, J. Kong, J. Yoo, S. Hernandez-Ainsa, U. F. Keyser, and A. Aksimentiev.
Ionic Conductivity, Structural Deformation and Programmable Anisotropy of DNA Origami in Electric Field
ACS nano
, 9(2):1420-1433, 2015. [ DOI | http ]

M. I. Walker, R. S. Weatherup, N. A. W. Bell, S. Hofmann, and U. F. Keyser.
Free-standing graphene membranes on glass nanopores for ionic current measurements
Appl. Phys. Lett.
, 10:023119, 2015. [ DOI | http ]

S. Pagliara, S. L. Dettmer, and U. F. Keyser.
Channel-facilitated diffusion boosted by particle binding at the channel entrance
Phys. Rev. Lett.
, 113:048102, 2014. [ DOI | http ]

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Recent Highlights

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ERC Consolidator Grant for research on novel nanopores. (ERC press release)

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Film explaining DNA origami technology for membrane channels. (Youtube)

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Auxetic nuclei in embryonic stem cells. (Nature Materials)
News and Views by Ning Wang: nature materials
Highlighted in Science: Editor's choice


Lipid-Bilayer-Spanning DNA Nanopores with a Bifunctional Porphyrin Anchor . (Angewandte Chemie)

Press release: U Cambridge
Coverage: azonano , e!science , sciencedaily , eurekalert , cambridgenetwork ,
Hernandez ACS nano highlighted on Genome Web
Li, Bell ACS nano highlighted on NanoWerk