Manuela Zoonens is a biochemist especially interested by the field of membrane proteins.
She was trained in the laboratory of Jean-Luc Popot. During her thesis, she studied the solution properties of complexes formed between membrane proteins and amphipols.
As post-doc, she worked on the understanding of membrane protein insertion in the lipid bilayer at Yale University (New Haven, CT, USA) in Don M. Engelman’s Laboratory.
Back to France in Daniel Ricquier’s laboratory at Necker Hospital, she started to work on an uncoupling mitochondrial carrier. She is pursuing this project and the development of amphipols for membrane protein studies since her recruitment as a tenure Researcher at the CNRS in 2010.


Laboratoire de Biologie Physico-Chimique des Protéines Membranaires UMR 7099 - IBPC
13 rue Pierre et Marie Curie F-75005 Paris, France
Mail : mzoonens(at)
Lab Web page:
Amphipol Web page:

Selected Articles:

  1. NMR study of a membrane protein in detergent-free aqueous solution. Zoonens M, Catoire LJ, Giusti F, Popot J-L.Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2005 Jun 21;102(25):8893-8898.
  2. Dynamics of membrane protein/amphipol association studied by Förster resonance energy transfer: implications for in vitro studies of amphipol-stabilized membrane proteins. Zoonens M, Giusti F, Zito F, Popot J-L.Biochemistry. 2007 Sep 11;46(36):10392-404.
  3. Dynamic helix interactions in transmembrane signaling. .Matthews, E.E., Zoonens, M., and Engelman, D.M. Cell. 2006;127(36):447-50.
  4. Bilayer interactions of pHLIP, a peptide that can deliver drugs and target tumors. M. Zoonens, Y. K. Reshetnyak and D. M. Engelman. Biophys. J. 2008;95:225-235.
  5. Thermodynamic characterization of the exchange of detergents and amphipols at the surfaces of integral membrane proteins. Tribet C, Diab C, Dahmane T, Zoonens M, Popot J-L, Winnik FM.Langmuir. 2009 Nov 3;25(21):12623-34.
  6. Solution NMR mapping of water-accessible residues in the transmembrane beta-barrel of OmpX. Catoire LJ, Zoonens M, van Heijenoort C, Giusti F, Guittet E, Popot J-L. Eur Biophys J. 2010 Mar;39(4):623-30.
  7. Production of UCP1 a membrane protein from the inner mitochondrial membrane using the cell free expression system in the presence of a fluorinated surfactant. I. Blesneac, S. Ravaud, C. Juillan-Binard, L. A. Barret, M. Zoonens, A. Polidori, B. Miroux, B. Pucci and E. Pebay-Peyroula. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 2012;1818:798-805.

Selected Reviews:

  1. Amphipols: polymeric surfactants for membrane biology research.Popot J-L, et al., Cell Mol Life Sci. 2003 Aug;60(8):1559-74.
  2. Amphipols from A to Z. Popot J-L, et al., Annu Rev Biophys. 2011 Jun 9;40:379-408.