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Jorg Grandl

Assistant Professor
(919) 684-1144
Research Interest: 
Molecular structure
Signal transduction
Research Summary: 
Molecular mechanisms of nociception, specifically the mechanisms of sensory ion channels involved in sensing temperature and touch.
Research Description: 

Somatosensation - the sense of mechanical touch, chemicals and temperature - is not well understood on a molecular level. It is known that these modalities are mediated by specialized sensory neurons and that the conversion of environmental stimuli into neuronal activity is accomplished by specific ion channels. However, how exactly these ion channels function mechanistically is unclear. My research aims to understand the detailed mechanisms of ion channel activation by mechanical touch, temperature and chemicals. This knowledge is fundamental for a complete understanding of somatosensation and nociception and the development of analgesic drugs.

Directionality of temperature activation in mouse TRPA1 ion channel can be inverted by single-point mutations in ankyrin repeat six.
Jabba S, Goyal R, Sosa-Pagán JO, Moldenhauer H, Wu J, Kalmeta B, Bandell M, Latorre R, Patapoutian A, Grandl J.
Neuron. 2014. 82:1017-31.

Temperature-induced opening of TRPV1 ion channel is stabilized by the pore domain.
Grandl J, Kim SE, Uzzell V, Bursulaya B, Petrus M, Bandell M, Patapoutian A.
Nat Neurosci. 2010. 13:708-14.

Two amino acid residues determine 2-APB sensitivity of the ion channels TRPV3 and TRPV4.
Hu H, Grandl J, Bandell M, Petrus M, Patapoutian A.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009. 106:1626-31.

Pore region of TRPV3 ion channel is specifically required for heat activation.
Grandl J, Hu H, Bandell M, Bursulaya B, Schmidt M, Petrus M, Patapoutian A.
Nat Neurosci. 2008. 11:1007-13.

Fluorescent epibatidine agonists for neuronal and muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.
Grandl J, Sakr E, Kotzyba-Hibert F, Krieger F, Bertrand S, Bertrand D, Vogel H, Goeldner M, Hovius R.
Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2007. 46:3505-8.