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Winton Programme for the Physics of Sustainability

Department of Physics


M.Phil. in Physics, University of Cambridge, UK (2013)
B.Sc. in Physics, University of Erlangen-Nuermberg, Germany (2012)


Rational design of artificial DNA origami lipid membrane pores

My research aims to create artificial channels through lipid membranes using DNA as a construction material. This DNA origami technique, or the art of folding DNA, enables us to create arbitrary three dimensional channels with versatile chemical modifications via molecular self-assembly. Such biocompatible and biodegradable artificial channels are of great interest for biosensing, such as rapid DNA analysis. At the same time, tailored pores can be expected to aid the development of new drugs.


Key publications: 

Göpfrich, K., Zettl, T., Meijering, A. E. C., Kocabey, S., Liedl, T., & Keyser, U. F. (2015). DNA-Tile Structures Lead to Ionic Currents through Lipid Membranes. Nano Letters. 10.1021/acs.nanolett.5b00189

Seifert, A.*, Göpfrich, K.*, Burns, J. R., Fertig, N., Keyser, U. F., & Howorka, S. (2014). Bilayer-Spanning DNA Nanopores with Voltage-Switching between Open and Closed State. ACS Nano. doi:10.1021/nn5039433, *equal contribution

Burns, J. R., Göpfrich, K., Wood, J. W., Thacker, V. V, Stulz, E., Ulrich, F., & Howorka, S. (2013). Lipid Bilayer-Spanning DNA Nanopores with a Bifunctional Porphyrin Anchor. Angewandte Chemie. doi:10.1002/anie.201305765.

Göpfrich, K., Kulkarni, C. V, Pambos, O. J., & Keyser, U. F. (2013). Lipid Nanobilayers to Host Biological Nanopores for DNA Translocations. Langmuir, 29(1), 355–364. doi:10.1021/la3041506

Hernández-Ainsa, S., Bell, N. a W., Thacker, V. V, Göpfrich, K., Misiunas, K., Fuentes-Perez, M. E., … Keyser, U. F. (2013). DNA Origami Nanopores for Controlling DNA Translocation. ACS nano. doi:10.1021/nn401759r

O. J. Pambos, K. Göpfrich, K.R. Mahendran, J. L. Gornall, O. Otto, L. J. Steinbock, C. Chimerel, M. Winterhalter & U. F. Keyser (2012). Towards Simultaneous Force and Resistive Pulse Sensing in Protein Nanopores Using Optical Tweezers. Proceedings of the International Conference Nanopores for Bioanalytical Applications.
Winton Scholar
Supervisor: Dr Ulrich F. Keyser
Biological and Soft Systems Group
Ms Kerstin  Göpfrich