THE MINOR LAB Home of the Electrosome

About Us

The Minor Lab merges structural, biochemical, genetic, and electrophysiological methods to dissect the mechanisms of action of ion channels, the complex protein machines that generate electrical signals in the heart, brain, and sensory systems.

Our research spans a range of eukaryotic membrane proteins important for brain and heart function including voltage-gated calcium channels and K2P channels, as well as bacterial ion channels such as BacNaVs (bacterial voltage-gated sodium channels). One of the BacNaVs we study, NaVAe, comes from an organism living in Mono Lake, California (top image on this page). The insights into human ion channel function derived from such studies underlines the deep importance of evolutionary connections among all forms of life that underpin modern biological science.

Related News

Poison Frogs, Birds, Hold Clues to Antidotes for Deadly Toxins: ‘Toxin Sponges’ May Help Animals Avoid Their Own Defensive Poisons by Robin Marks, Aug. 5, 2021

Poison birds and frogs hold clues to antidotes for deadly toxins: Researchers show “toxin sponges,” not mutations, may help toxic animals avoid poisoning themselves California Academy of Sciences, Aug. 5, 2021

Here’s why poisonous animals don’t poison themselves: Toxic birds and frogs have evolved a way to avoid harm—but not in the way we thought by Jason Bittel, Aug. 5, 2021

An absorbing tale: poison dart frogs might have a ‘toxin sponge’ Nature Research Highlight, Aug. 5, 2021

One small frog study heralds a leap in poison cures: Golden poison frogs create antidote to their own nerve agent, study suggests by Rhys Blakely, Aug. 5, 2021

Why don't poisonous animals die from their own toxins?r by JoAnna Wendel, Sept. 11, 2021

K2P channel gating caught in the act: asymmetric pinching and dilation of a potassium channel selectivity filter Webinar by Daniel Minor Jr., Sept. 15, 2020

Changing Channels: Interview with SBgrid consortium by Daniel Minor Jr., Sept. 27, 2019

Research at UC San Francisco Connects Mono Lake, Evolution, and Cardiovascular Health by Julia Frankenback, Dec. 8, 2013

UCSF Research Connects Mono Lake, Evolution, and Cardiovascular Health by Clarice Estrada, Dec. 11, 2013

Dan Minor Lab Publications


Daniel L. Minor, Jr., Ph.D.

University of California San Francisco,
Cardiovascular Research Institute

Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics and Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology

Faculty Scientist, Molecular Biophysics & Integrated Imaging Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley

Daniel L. Minor, Jr., Ph.D.


The Minor lab is located in the Smith Cardiovascular Research Building at the UCSF Mission Bay Campus in San Francisco. If you are interested in joining us, please see here.

Latest Publications

Structural insights into the mechanisms and pharmacology of K2P potassium channels. Natale, A.M., Deal, P.E., and Minor, D.L. Jr. Journal of Molecular Biology 433:166995 (2021)

Quaternary structure independent folding of voltage-gated ion channel pore domain subunits.  Arrigoni, C., Lolicato, M., Shaya, D., Rohaim, A., Findeisen, F., Colleran, C.M., Dominik, P., Kim, S.S., Schuermann, J., Kossiakoff, A.A., Minor, D.L., Jr. bioRxiv   doi: (2021)

Production of K2P2.1 (TREK-1) for structural studies.  Lee, H., Lolicato, M., Arrigoni, C, and Minor, D.L., Jr. Methods in Enzymology  653 151-188 (2021)

Differential effects of modified batrachotoxins on voltage-gated sodium channel fast and slow inactivation.  MacKenzie, T.M.G., Abderemane-Ali, F., Garrison, C.E., Minor, D.L., Jr., and Du Bois, J. Cell Chemical Biology Dec 24;S2451-9456(21)00517-1 (2021)

Evidence that toxin resistance in poison birds and frogs is not rooted in sodium channel mutations and relies on ‘toxin sponge’ proteins. Abderemane-Ali, F., Rossen, N.D., Kobiela, M.E., Craig, R.A.II, Garrison, C.E., Chen, Z., O'Connell, L.A., Du Bois, J., Dumbacher, J.P., and Minor, D.L., Jr. J. Gen. Physiol  153:e202112872 (2021)

K2P channel C-type gating involves asymmetric selectivity filter order-disorder transitions. Lolicato, M., Natale, A.M., Abderemane-Ali, F., Crottes, D., Capponi, S., Duman, R. Wagner, A., Rosenberg, J.M., Grabe, M., Minor, D.L. Jr., Science Advances 6 eabc9174 (2020)

Polynuclear Ruthenium Amines Inhibit K2P Channels via a "Finger in the Dam" Mechanism. Pope, L., Lolicato, M., Minor, D.L. Jr., Cell Chemical Biology   27, 511-524 (2020)

Structure of the saxiphilin:saxitoxin (STX)complex reveals a convergent molecular recognition strategy for paralytic toxins. Yen, T.-J., Lolicato, M., Thomas-Tran, R., Du Bois, J., and Minor, D.L. Jr., Science Advances 5 eaax2650 (2019) View Press

SARAF luminal domain structure reveals a novel domain-swapped β-sandwich fold important for SOCE modulation. Kimberlin, C.R.,Meshcheriakova, A., Palty, R., Karbat, I., Reuveny, E., and Minor, D.L. Jr. Journal of Molecular Biology 431 2869-2883 (2019)

A selectivity filter gate controls voltage gated calcium channel (CaV) calcium-dependent inactivation. Abderemane-Ali, F., Findeisen, F., Rossen, N.D., and Minor, D.L. Jr., Neuron 101 1134-1149 (2019)