Vollum Institute

The Vollum Institute is dedicated to basic research focusing on gene regulation, structural biology, cell signaling, molecular neuroscience and synaptic modulation with implications for human diseases ranging from autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders to Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, psychiatric diseases and mechanisms of drug addiction.

Isabelle Baconguis

Welcome to the Vollum Institute

The Vollum Institute is a privately endowed research institute at Oregon Health & Science University dedicated to basic research that will lead to new treatments for neurological and psychiatric diseases. Vollum scientists have broad-ranging interests that coalesce around molecular neurobiology and cellular physiology. Their work has transformed the field of neuroscience and, in particular, have provided important advances in the study of synaptic transmission, neuronal development, neurotransmitter transporters, ion channels and the neurobiology of disease.

Upcoming Events


Katharina Duerr, postdoctoral fellow in the Gouaux Lab, has been invited to speak in the New & Notable Symposium at the Biophysical Society 59th Annual meeting in Baltimore in 2015.
Read more about the New & Notable Symposium

Vollum Fellow, Isabelle Baconguis, was recently featured in an video highlighting research at OHSU.
Watch Dr. Baconguis' video on YouTube

Vollum senior scientist and HHMI investigator, Eric Gouaux, was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Copenhagen for research of the molecular principles underpinning the structure and function of chemical synapses.
Read the OHSU press release

Senior Scientist, John Adelman, received the 2014 Richard T. Jones Distinguished Alumni Scientist Award. This award is presented by OHSU's School of Medicine Alumni Association and recognizes continuing research excellence and contributions to both the scientific community and basic science education.
Watch Dr. Adelman's interview on YouTube (starts around 03:54)



Phase-locking precision is enhanced by multiquantal release at an auditory hair cell ribbon synapse.

Geng-Lin Li, Soyoun Cho, and Henrique von Gersdorff
Neuron, September 17; 83(6):1404-17

A comprehensive thalamocortical projection map at the mesoscopic level.

Barbara J. Hunnicutt, Brian R. Long, Deniz Kusefoglu, Katrina J. Gertz, Haining Zhong, and Tianyi Mao
Nature Neuroscience, September; 17(9):1276-1285

X-ray structures of AMPA receptor–cone snail toxin complexes illuminate activation mechanism.

Lei Chen, Katharina L. Dürr, and Eric Gouaux
Science, August 29; 345(6200):1021-1026

X-ray structures of GluCl in apo states reveal a gating mechanism of Cys-loop receptors.

Thorsten Althoff, Ryan E. Hibbs, Surajit Banerjee, and Eric Gouaux
Nature, August 21; 512(7514):333-337

Structure and dynamics of AMPA receptor GluA2 in resting, pre-open, and desensitized states.

Katharina L. Dürr*, Lei Chen*, Richard A. Stein, Rita De Zorzi, I. Mihaela Folea, Thomas Walz, Hassane S. Mchaourab, and Eric Gouaux (*co-first author)
Cell, August 14; 158(4):778-792

A Walk Through a Vollum Lab

Watch the Westbrook Lab video

Gary Westbrook created a three-minute video to explain the research being conducted in his lab. The video is targeted to prospective postdoctoral fellows and students.

Take a walk through the Westbrook lab