Photo of Eric Gouaux, Ph.D.

Eric Gouaux Ph.D.

  •      (503) 494-5535
    • Professor Vollum Institute
    • Senior Scientist Vollum Institute
    • Jennifer and Bernard Lacroute Term Chair in Neuroscience Research Vollum Institute
    • Neuroscience Graduate Program School of Medicine
    • Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Graduate Program School of Medicine
    • Program in Molecular and Cellular Biosciences School of Medicine

Eric Gouaux completed his B.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Chemistry at Harvard University. He remained at Harvard for a year as a postdoctoral fellow before continuing his postdoctoral studies at MIT. In 1993, he was appointed assistant professor at the University of Chicago Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. In 1996, Gouaux joined the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Columbia University as an assistant professor. In 2000, he was appointed Investigator with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and associate professor with Columbia, reaching full professor the following year. Gouaux came to OHSU in 2005 as a senior scientist at the Vollum Institute, continuing his position with Howard Hughes. In 2015, Gouaux was appointed the Jennifer and Bernard Lacroute Term Chair in Neuroscience Research.

The work in the Gouaux Lab is concentrated on developing molecular mechanisms for the function of receptors and transporters at chemical synapses by utilizing cryo-electron microscopy, x-ray crystallography, and electrophysiology.

Areas of interest

  • chemical synapses and synaptic transmission
  • glutamate receptors
  • neurotransmitter transporters
  • ligand-gated ion channels
  • cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM)
  • x-ray crystallography
  • membrane proteins


  • A.B., Harvard University, Cambridge Massachusetts 1984
  • Ph.D., Harvard University, Cambridge Massachusetts 1989

Honors and awards

  • Searle Scholar (1994)
  • Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow (1996)
  • NINDS Javits Investigator Award (2008)
  • NIMH MERIT Award (2009)
  • Discovery Award, Medical Research Foundation of Oregon (2009)
  • National Academy of Sciences, elected member (2010)
  • Physiological Society Annual Review Prize Lecture (2013)
  • Anatrace Membrane Protein Award, Biophysical Society (2016)


  • Zhao Y, Chen S, Yoshioka C, Baconguis I, Gouaux E. (2016) Architecture of fully occupied GluA2 AMPA receptor–TARP complex elucidated by cryo-EM. Nature 536:108-111.

  • Mansoor SE, Lü W, Oosterheert W, Shekhar M, Tajkhorshid E, Gouaux E. (2016) X-ray structures define human P2X3 receptor gating cycle and antagonist action. Nature 538:66-71.

  • Lü W*, Du J*, Goehring A, Gouaux E. (2017) Cryo-EM structures of the triheteromeric NMDA receptor and its allosteric modulation. Science 355 pii:eaal3729. (*co-first author)

  • Chen S, Zhao Y, Wang Y, Shekhar M, Tajkhorshid E, Gouaux E. (2017) Activation and desensitization mechanism of AMPA receptor-TARP complex by cryo-EM. Cell 170:1234-1246.e14.

  • Coleman J and Gouaux E. (2017) Structural basis for recognition of diverse antidepressants by the human serotonin transporter. bioRxiv October 17, 2017

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