Joanne Lemieux

Joanne Lemieux

Joanne Lemieux (PhD, New York University)

Associate Professor

Department of Biochemistry
School of Translational Medicine
Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry
University of Alberta
451 Medical Sciences Building
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2H7

Tel: 780.492.3586
Lab Tel: 780.492.3465
Fax: 780.492.0886

Lab Website


Membrane proteins are key targets for the drug development. Our research centers around studying membrane proteins involved in disease, using X-ray crystallography and other biophysical techniques, to reveal structural, functional and mechanistic details of membrane proteins that could one day aid in the development of new drugs and vaccines targeted towards membrane proteins. One major focus of the lab is the study of rhomboid intramembrane proteases (peptidases). Rhomboid function has been linked to breast cancer, and type 2 diabetes. Our crystal structures of this novel type of protease are providing information on how the rhomboid protease acts to cleave protein targets in the membrane. Using both functional and structural approaches we are focusing on how rhomboid proteases regulate cleavage of their substrates. This information is crucial to assist with de novo drug design.

We also focus on iron binding receptors from gram-negative pathogens such as Neisseria, Haemophilus and Moraxella. Specifically we are studying lactoferrin-binding receptors, which may provide novel targets for antigen engineering in vaccine design.

Selected publications

Wentong Long, Pankaj Panwar, Kate Witkowska, Kenneth Wong, Debbie O'Neill, Xing-Zheng Chen, M. Joanne Lemieux, Chris I. Cheeseman. (2015) Critical Roles for Two Hydrophobic Residues within Human Glucose Transporter 9 (hSLC2A9) Affecting Substrate Selectivity and the Energetics of Urate Transport J Biol Chem. pii: jbc.M114.611178.

Kristian Mark P. Caldo, Michael S. Greer, Guanqun Chen, M. Joanne Lemieux, Randall J. Weselake (2015) Solubilization and Purification of Recombinant Brassica napus Diacylglycerol Acyltransferase 1. FEBS Lett.;589(6):773-8.34.

Zoe Cournia, Tobby Allen, Ioan Andricioaei, Bruno Antonny, Daniel Baum, Grace Brannigan, Nicolae-Viorel Buchete, Jason T. Deckman, Lucie Delemotte, Coral del Val, Ran Friedman, Paraskevi Gkeka, Hans-Christian Hege, Jérôme Hénin, Marina Kasimova, Antonis Kolocouris, Michael L. Klein, Syma Khalid, M. Joanne Lemieux, Norbert Lindow, Mahua Roy, Jana Selent, Mounir Tarek, Florentina Tofoleanu, Stefano Vanni, Sinisa Urban, David J. Wales, Jeremy C. Smith, Ana-Nicoleta Bondar (2015) Membrane Proteins: Environmental Effects on Structure, Function and Dynamics. J Mol. 8(4):611-40.

Christopher Girke, Elena A Arutyunova, Maria Syed, Michaela Traub, Torsten Mohlmann, M. Joanne Lemieux. (2015) High yield purification and characterization of Equilibrative Nucleoside Transporter 7 (ENT7) from Arabidopsis thaliana. Biochim Biophys Acta 1850(9):1921-9.

Arutyunova, Panwar, P., Skiba, P.M., Gale, N., Mak,M.W., and Lemieux, M. Joanne Allosteric regulation of rhomboid intramembrane proteolysis. EMBOJ - in press.

Witz, S., Panwar, P., Schober, M., Deppe, J., Pasha, F.A., Lemieux, M. Joanne and Mohlmann, T. (2014) Structure-Function Relationship of a Plant NCS1 Member - Homology Modeling and Mutagenesis Identified Residues Critical for Substrate Specificity of PLUTO, a Nucleobase Transporter from Arabidopsis. PLoS One, Mar 12;9(3):e91343. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0091343. eCollection 2014.

Brooks, C.L., Morrison, M., and Lemieux, M. Joanne (2013) Novel plate screening technique for over-expression assessment of eukaryotic targets expressed in Pichia. Protein Science, 21 FEB 2013, DOI: 10.1002/pro.2223.

Lazareno-Saez, C., Arutyunova, E., Coquelle, N., and Lemieux, M. Joanne (2013) Domain swapping in the cytoplasmic domain of E.coli rhomboid protease. J. Mol. Biol. April 12;425(7):1127-1142. doi: 10.1016/j.jmb.2013.01.019.

Padmapriya Sampathkumar, Michelle W. Mak, Sarah Withold, Emmanuel Guigard, Cyril M. Kay, M. Joanne Lemieux. (2012) Quaternary structure analysis of rhomboid intramembrane peptidases reveals a homodimer. BBA Biomembranes.(12):3090-3097.

Brooks, C.L., Lazareno-Saez, C., Lamoureux, J.S., Mak, M.W., and Lemieux, M.J. (2011) Insights into substrate gating in H. influenzae rhomboid. J. Mol. Biol. 407:687-697.