Arne Elofsson

Arne Elofsson

Professor in Bioinformatics

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Works at Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics
Telephone 08-16 10 19
Visiting address Science for Life Laboratory, Tomtebodavägen 23, Box 1031, 171 65 Solna
Postal address Institutionen för biokemi och biofysik 106 91 Stockholm


Protein Evolutionary Bioinformatics.
In 1973 Theodosius Dobzhansky wrote his famous essay "Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution" and this applies to most of our   studies of proteins. The most important recent change in life science has been the tremendous increase in sequence information available.  Traditionally, evolutionary information has been used to identify specific conserved motifs, to detect homologs and to predict various features of proteins.  However, today when it is common to have access to thousands of homologous protein sequences for a single protein family there is much more information available to be harvested.  Also the availability of complete genomic sequence information provides unique opportunities to improve our understanding of not only the evolutionary history of a gene/protein but also provide clues to its interactions partners etc. Our main interest is to understand the most fundamental questions about proteins, their function and evolution. These questions include: How is a novel protein created, what is the main function of alternative splicing, how can we predict the structure of large molecular machines, how functions the folding of transmembrane proteins.

We are applying this philosophy primarily to the studies of two very important classes of proteins: transmembrane proteins and repeat domain containing proteins. Both classes of proteins are important drug-targets and/or central to diseases. Our studies use a broad range of techniques. We are primarily using bioinformatics and other computational methods, but also to an increasing fraction biochemical and other experimental techniques.

From summer 2012 are we located at Science for Life Laboratory.



Group members

Claudio Bassot, Postdoc

Saman Hosseini Ashtiani, PhD student

Patrick Bryant, PhD student

Oxana Lundström, PhD student

Gabriele Pozzati, PhD student

Aditi Shenoy, PhD student

Wensi Zhu, PhD student



Selected Publications

  • Contreras, F.X., Ernst, A.M., Haberkant, P., Bjorkholm, P., Lindahl, E., Gonen, B., Tischer, C., Elofsson, A., von Heijne, G., Thiele, C., Pepperkok, R., Wieland, F. and Brugger, B. (2012) Molecular recognition of a single sphingolipid species by a protein's transmembrane domain. Nature 481 (7382) : 525-529.

  • Bernsel, A., Viklund, H., Falk, J., Lindahl, E., von Heijne, G. and Elofsson, A. (2008) Prediction of membrane-protein topology from first principles. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 105(20) : 7177-7181.

  • Moore, A.D., Bjorklund, A.K., Ekman, D., Bornberg-Bauer, E. and Elofsson, A. (2008) Arrangements in the modular evolution of proteins.Trends Biochem Sci 33 (9) : 444-451.

  • Elofsson, A. and von Heijne, G. (2007) Membrane protein structure: prediction versus reality. Annu Rev Biochem 76: 125-140.

  • Click "Publications" in the menu to the right to see the most recent publications.


Funding Sources


Last updated: September 14, 2021

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