Professor Andrew Nelson
- Position: Professor
- Areas of expertise: Organised phospholipid layers; surface induced phase transitions; nanoparticle/membrane interaction; toxicity sensing.
- Email: A.L.Nelson@leeds.ac.uk
- Phone: +44(0)113 343 6409
Biological membranes are critical to a cell's function. Phospholipid bilayers form the backbone to the biomembrane and are held together with the protein enzymes and ion channels in a highly organised state by intermolecular forces of self-assembly. We are able to construct organised artificial membranes composed of phospholipids and other entities and support them in a very stable configuration on a solid and/or liquid surface. We can interrogate the membrane's organisation and function using electrochemical and optical techniques. Interaction of these model membranes with toxic agents and/or nanoparticles disrupts their organisation and modifies the function of the component proteins. These properties are utilised in the development of biologically relevant on-line high throughput toxicity sensors. Current research is funded by the MoD/Dstl, EPSRC, NATO, EU FP7, Royal Society, Leverhulme Trust and Modern Water PLC.