Prof. Dr. Kay Grünewald participates in RESIST research projects D1 and D2.

My Research Interest in RESIST

Our research focus in RESIST is the structural characterisation of stages in the herpesvirus assembly pathway. For this, we use cellular electron cryo microscopy and tomography guided by advanced light microscopy techniques. Studying processes directly inside the infected cell will significantly advance the field as the current understanding of early steps was mainly derived from in vitro studies of isolated particles or bulk assays. Capturing metastable assembly intermediates will allow for novel mechanistic insights. Together with other researchers in RESIST the long-term aim is to contribute to new interventions for herpesviral diseases and improving the options for combination therapies that utilize drugs acting at different stages of the viral life cycle. 

Prof. Grünewald about his scientific work

Prof. Dr. Kay Grünewald – Curriculum Vitae

Current Position

  • Since 2017 Professor (W3) and Head of Research Department Structural Cell
    Biology of Viruses, Faculty Member of Centre for Structural Systems Biology (CSSB)

Undergraduate and Postgraduate Training

  • 1991-1996 Studies of Biology, Friedrich-Schiller University Jena

  • 1996 Diploma in Biology, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena with Prof. W. Braune

  • 2000 PhD (Dr. rer. nat.) in Biology

Academic and Research Posts

  • 2001 Post-doctoral research fellow at FSU Jena and Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry Martinsried (with Prof. Wolfgang Baumeister)

  • 2002 – 2003 Post-doctoral research fellow at National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, USA, with Dr. Alasdair C. Steven (Laboratory Structural Biology Research)

  • 2004 Scientist at the Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry, Department of Molecular Structural Biology, Martinsried

  • 2004 – 2009 Independent Junior Research Group leader, DFG Emmy-Noether-Programme, at the Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry, Martinsried

  • Since 2009 Senior Group Leader, University of Oxford, Division of Structural Biology, Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, Head of Oxford Particle Imaging Centre

  • 2013 – 2017 Full Professor of Structural Cell Biology, University of Oxford, UK

  • Since 2014 Faculty Member of Centre of Structural Systems Biology (CSSB), Hamburg

  • Since 2017 Full Professor of Structural Cell Biology of Viruses, Universität Hamburg, Dept. of Chemistry and Head of Department, Heinrich-Pette-Institute, Leibnitz Institute of Experimental Virology, Hamburg

Other Scientific Roles

  • Since 2011 Lead scientist in INSTRUCT (Integrated Infrastructure for Structural Biology in Europe)

  • 2011 – 2017 Associated Member of Micron, the Oxford Advanced BioImaging Unit

  • Since 2011 Founding member of UK National cryoEM Facility eBIC at Diamond Light Source (DLS), Harwell, UK with Helen Saibil, Dave Stuart and Gerd Matelik

  • Since 2014 Head of CryoEM facility at CSSB, Hamburg

  • Since 2018 Associated PI, DFG Cluster of Excellence ‘Advanced Imaging of Matter: Structure, Dynamics and Control on the Atomic Scale’, Universität Hamburg

  • Since 2018 Executive Board Member, Leader of Topic D, DFG Cluster of Excellence ‘Resolving Infection Susceptibility (RESIST)’, Hannover Medical School

  • 2018 Coordinator and lead applicant of Leibniz ScienceCampus (LSC) InterACt – Integrative analysis of pathogen-induced compartments

Awards and Prizes

  • 2003 Norman P. Salzmann Award in Virology, NIH, USA

  • 2004 – 2009 Emmy-Noether Award of the German Science Foundation (DFG)

  • 2006 Young Academics Award of ‘Fonds der Chemischen Industrie’

  • 2010 & 2015 Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow

Recommended Links

For further information about Prof. Grünewald’s scientific work please check the following links:

10 Selected Publications (of > 74 original publications)

Hernández-Durán A, Greco TM, Vollmer B, Cristea IM, Grünewald K, Topf M. (2019) Protein interactions and consensus clustering analysis uncover insights into herpesvirus virion structure and function relationships, PLoS Biology 17(6): e3000316. 

Moser F, Pražák V, Mordhorst V, Andrade DM, Baker LA, Hagen C, Grünewald K, Kaufmann R. (2019) Cryo-SOFI enabling low-dose super-resolution correlative light and electron cryo-microscopy. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 116(11): 4804-4809.

Chorev, DS, Baker LA, Wu D, Beilsten-Edmands V, Rouse SL, Zeev-Ben-Mordehai T, Jiko C, Samsudin F, Gerle C, Khalid S, Stewart AG, Matthews SJ, Grünewald K, Robinson CV. (2018) Protein assemblies ejected directly from native membranes yield complexes for mass spectrometry. Science 362: 829–834.

Zeev-Ben-Mordehai T, Vasishtan D, Hernández Durán A, Vollmer B, White P, Prasad Pandurangan A, Siebert CA Topf M, Grünewald K. (2016) Two distinct trimeric conformations of natively membrane-anchored full-length Herpes simplex virus 1 glycoprotein B. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 113, 4176-81.

Hagen C, Dent KC, Zeev-Ben-Mordehai T, Grange M, Bosse JB, Whittle C, Klupp BG, Siebert CA, Vasishtan D, Bäuerlein FJB, Cheleski J, Werner S, Guttmann P, Rehbein S, Henzler K, Demmerle J, Adler B, Koszinowski U, Schermelleh L, Schneider G, Enquist LW, Plitzko JM, Mettenleiter TC, Grünewald K. (2015) Structural Basis of Vesicle Formation at the Inner Nuclear Membrane. Cell 163, 1692–1701.

Kaufmann R, Schellenberger P, Seiradake E, Dobbie IM, Jones EY, Davis I, Hagen C, Grünewald K. (2014) Super-Resolution Microscopy Using Standard Fluorescent Proteins in Intact Cells under Cryo-Conditions. Nano Letters 4, 4171-4175.

Ibiricu I, Huiskonen JT, Döhner K, Bradke F, Sodeik B, Grünewald K. (2011) Cryo Electron Tomography of Herpes Simplex Virus during Axonal Transport and Secondary Envelopment in Primary Neurons. PLoS Pathog. 7: e1002406.

Maurer, UE, Sodeik B, Grünewald K. (2008) Intermediates of membrane fusion in herpesvirus entry captured by cryo electron tomography. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 105(30): 10559-10564. 

Schelhaas M, Pelkmans L, Malmström J, Aebersold R, Haugstetter J, Ellgaard L, Grünewald K, Helenius A. (2007) Simian Virus 40 depends on ER protein folding and quality control factors for entry into host cells. Cell 131: 516-529. 

Grünewald K, Desai P, Winkler DC, Heymann JB, Belnap DM, Baumeister W, Steven AC. (2003) Three-dimensional structure of Herpes simplex virus from cryo-electron tomography, Science 302: 1396-1398.


  Prof. Dr. Kay Grünewald
  Centre for Structural Systems Biology (CSSB)
  c/o Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron DESY
Notkestraße 85, Building 15
22607 Hamburg
  +49 40 8998-87700