Welcome to the laboratory

Our research focuses on understanding the molecular and functional basis of neuronal signalling, virus-host interactions and gene regulation. It is one of eleven members of a well equipped, open-concept research floor in the Life Sciences Building at York University.


Most undergraduate trainees in the lab tend to participate in a biochemical or cell biological projects while most graduate students tend to work on molecular structure. However, projects can be tailored to interest and experience.


Logan Donaldson has been a strucutral biologist throughout out his career. While nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy remains his primary technique for determining the atomic resoultion structures of protein complexes involved in disease, the lab continues to add new methodologies such as X-ray crystallography and mass spectrometry to its repertoire.


He joined YorkU in 2000 and was promoted to the rank of Professor in 2010. He did his postdoctoral training in NMR methodology with Marius Clore and Angela Gronenborn (US National Institutes of Health) and Lewis Kay, Julie Forman-Kay and Tony Pawson (University of Toronto). His graduate training was in structural biology (PhD / UBC) and gene regulation (MSc / McMaster).


His research career has been recognized by a CIHR New Investigator award (2006-2011) and NSERC Discovery Accelerator Award (2011-2014).


Graduate Students (2015)


Ekaterina Smirnova (PhD candidate)

Sarah Ramsook (MSc candidate)


Undergraduate Students (2015)


Gurnit Atwal (research practicum)

Naiduni Kurukulasooriya (research practicum)

Ali Rizvi (NSERC USRA)

Shaili Perez (NSERC USRA)




Click through to explore some of the projects that the lab has published

Neuronal signaling

Viral Assembly

Gene Expression

Just like a picture is worth a thousand words, we pursue structures that help us understand molecular communication at the most fundamental level. Such a detailed perspective is often necessary to determine how small changes can combine and lead to the progression of disease


Undergraduate trainees are an integral part of the research program and often earn authorships on publications



SC/BIOL 4030


Proteomics & Protein Structure


This course has evolved from covering high throughput methods of protein detection to general aspects on protein structure and design. The shift in curriculum has been in response to a need for more intermediate/advanced biochemistry in the upper levels and to provide some exposure to bioinformatics.


This 3.0 credit course is typically offered every Winter semester on Mon/Wed from 5:30-7:00 pm


SC/BIOL 5028


Graduate Protein Structure & Function


The objective of this course is to survey aspects of protein structure and the primary methodologies to determine protein structure (NMR spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography). The overall grade is comprised of two exams, one assignment and one presentation.




This 1.5 credit course will be offered in Winter 2016


SC/BIOL 6028


Graduate Seminar Series


Each session, two graduate students from the Biology Department give a presentation of ~20 minutes followed by a question period. Presentations should be geared to a wide audience. And there's refreshments !





Attendance for all graduate students is mandatory. We meet on Tue from 1:00-2:00 pm.

Contact Us



Logan Donaldson

Department of Biology

323B Life Sciences Building

York University

Toronto, ON / M3J1P3

+1 416 357 2346