Wesley I. Sundquist, PhD

Co-Chair, Department of Biochemistry

Research Interests

  • ESCRT Pathway
  • Protein Design
  • Cytokinesis
  • Immunity
  • HIV
  • Structural Biology of Retroviruses


Lab Website

Academic Information

  • Departments: Biochemistry - Professor
  • Cancer Center Programs: Cell Response & Regulation

Academic Office Information

  • 801-585-5402
  • Emma Eccles Jones Research Building
    Department of Biochemistry
    15 North Medical Drive East, Room: 3532C
    Salt Lake City, UT 84112

Research Statement

The Sundquist Lab studies the cellular, molecular and structural biology of retroviruses, particularly HIV, and the roles of the ESCRT pathway in cell division and the abscission checkpioint. Major projects in our lab include studies of: 1) ESCRT pathway functions and regulation in cell division, 2) HIV budding, and 3) HIV capsid structure, function and restriction, particularly by the TRIM5α system. Our approaches include NMR, EM, crystallographic and compuational studies of viral complexes, identification and biochemical analyses of the interactions between viral components and their cellular partners, and genetic analyses of viral and cellular protein functions.

Academic Bio

Wesley Sundquist, PhD, is Samuels Professor and Co-Chair of the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Utah. He is also a member of the Cell Response and Regulation Program at Huntsman Cancer Institute.

Sundquist received a bachelor's degree from Carleton College, Minnesota, and a PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His honors and awards include election to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences

Education History

Type School Degree
Postdoctoral Fellowship MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology
Postdoctoral Fellow
Doctoral Training Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Undergraduate Carleton College

Global Impact

Education History

Type School Degree Country
Postdoctoral Fellowship MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology
Postdoctoral Fellow United Kingdom


Institution Description Country
Structural Studies Division, MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology Postdoctoral Fellow United Kingdom

Selected Publications

Journal Article

  1. Gu M, LaJoie D, Chen OS, von Appen A, Ladinsky MS, Redd MJ, Nikolova L, Bjorkman PJ, Sundquist WI, Ullman KS, Frost A (2017). LEM2 recruits CHMP7 for ESCRT-mediated nuclear envelope closure in fission yeast and human cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 114(11), E2166-E2175.
  2. Monroe N, Han H, Shen PS, Sundquist WI, Hill CP (2017). Structural basis of protein translocation by the Vps4-Vta1 AAA ATPase.LID - 10.7554/eLife.24487 [doi]LID - e24487 [pii]. Elife, 6.
  3. Votteler J, Ogohara C, Yi S, Hsia Y, Nattermann U, Belnap DM, King NP, Sundquist WI (2016). Designed proteins induce the formation of nanocage-containing extracellular vesicles. Nature, 540(7632), 292-295.
  4. Wagner JM, Roganowicz MD, Skorupka K, Alam SL, Christensen D, Doss G, Wan Y, Frank GA, Ganser-Pornillos BK, Sundquist WI, Pornillos O (2016). Mechanism of B-box 2 domain-mediated higher-order assembly of the retroviral restriction factor TRIM5alpha.LID - 10.7554/eLife.16309 [doi]LID - e16309 [pii]. Elife, 5.
  5. Li YL, Chandrasekaran V, Carter SD, Woodward CL, Christensen DE, Dryden KA, Pornillos O, Yeager M, Ganser-Pornillos BK, Jensen GJ, Sundquist WI (2016). Primate TRIM5 proteins form hexagonal nets on HIV-1 capsids.LID - 10.7554/eLife.16269 [doi]LID - e16269 [pii]. Elife, 5.
  6. McCullough J, Clippinger AK, Talledge N, Skowyra ML, Saunders MG, Naismith TV, Colf LA, Afonine P, Arthur C, Sundquist WI, Hanson PI, Frost A (2015). Structure and membrane remodeling activity of ESCRT-III helical polymers. Science, 350(6267), 1548-51.
  7. Mercenne G, Alam SL, Arii J, Lalonde MS, Sundquist WI (2015). Angiomotin functions in HIV-1 assembly and budding.LID - 10.7554/eLife.03778 [doi]. Elife, 4.
  8. Han H, Monroe N, Votteler J, Shakya B, Sundquist WI, Hill CP (2015). Binding of Substrates to the Central Pore of the Vps4 ATPase Is Autoinhibited by the Microtubule Interacting and Trafficking (MIT) Domain and Activated by MIT Interacting Motifs (MIMs). J Biol Chem, 290(21), 13490-9.
  9. Caballe A, Wenzel DM, Agromayor M, Alam SL, Skalicky JJ, Kloc M, Carlton JG, Labrador L, Sundquist WI, Martin-Serrano J (2015). ULK3 regulates cytokinetic abscission by phosphorylating ESCRT-III proteins. Elife, 4, e06547.
  10. Fletcher AJ, Christensen DE, Nelson C, Tan CP, Schaller T, Lehner PJ, Sundquist WI, Towers GJ (2015). TRIM5alpha requires Ube2W to anchor Lys63-linked ubiquitin chains and restrict reverse transcription. EMBO J, 34(15), 2078-95.
  11. Sanchez JG, Okreglicka K, Chandrasekaran V, Welker JM, Sundquist WI, Pornillos O (2014). The tripartite motif coiled-coil is an elongated antiparallel hairpin dimer. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 111(7), 2494-9.
  12. Monroe N, Han H, Gonciarz MD, Eckert DM, Karren MA, Whitby FG, Sundquist WI, Hill CP (2014). The oligomeric state of the active Vps4 AAA ATPase. J Mol Biol, 426(3), 510-25.
  13. Sandrin V, Sundquist WI (2013). ESCRT requirements for EIAV budding. Retrovirology, 10(1), 104.
  14. Effantin G, Dordor A, Sandrin V, Martinelli N, Sundquist WI, Schoehn G, Weissenhorn W (2013). ESCRT-III CHMP2A and CHMP3 form variable helical polymers in vitro and act synergistically during HIV-1 budding. Cell Microbiol, 15(2), 213-26.
  15. Lamorte L, Titolo S, Lemke CT, Goudreau N, Mercier JF, Wardrop E, Shah VB, von Schwedler UK, Langelier C, Banik SS, Aiken C, Sundquist WI, Mason SW (2013). Discovery of novel small-molecule HIV-1 replication inhibitors that stabilize capsid complexes. Antimicrob Agents Chemother, 57(10), 4622-31.
  16. Skalicky JJ, Arii J, Wenzel DM, Stubblefield WM, Katsuyama A, Uter NT, Bajorek M, Myszka DG, Sundquist WI (2012). Interactions of the human LIP5 regulatory protein with endosomal sorting complexes required for transport. J Biol Chem, 287(52), 43910-26.
  17. Dowlatshahi DP, Sandrin V, Vivona S, Shaler TA, Kaiser SE, Melandri F, Sundquist WI, Kopito RR (2012). ALIX is a Lys63-specific polyubiquitin binding protein that functions in retrovirus budding. Dev Cell, 23(6), 1247-54.
  18. Lemke CT, Titolo S, von Schwedler U, Goudreau N, Mercier JF, Wardrop E, Faucher AM, Coulombe R, Banik SS, Fader L, Gagnon A, Kawai SH, Rancourt J, Tremblay M, Yoakim C, Simoneau B, Archambault J, Sundquist WI, Mason SW (2012). Distinct effects of two HIV-1 capsid assembly inhibitor families that bind the same site within the N-terminal domain of the viral CA protein. J Virol, 86(12), 6643-55.
  19. Morita E, Arii J, Christensen D, Votteler J, Sundquist WI (2012). Attenuated protein expression vectors for use in siRNA rescue experiments. Biotechniques, (0), 1-5.
  20. Zhai Q, Landesman MB, Robinson H, Sundquist WI, Hill CP (2011). Structure of the Bro1 domain protein BROX and functional analyses of the ALIX Bro1 domain in HIV-1 budding. PLoS One, 6(12), e27466.
  21. Jager S, Cimermancic P, Gulbahce N, Johnson JR, McGovern KE, Clarke SC, Shales M, Mercenne G, Pache L, Li K, Hernandez H, Jang GM, Roth SL, Akiva E, Marlett J, Stephens M, DOrso I, Fernandes J, Fahey M, Mahon C, ODonoghue AJ, Todorovic A, Morris JH, Maltby DA, Alber T, Cagney G, Bushman FD, Young JA, Chanda SK, Sundquist WI, Kortemme T, Hernandez RD, Craik CS, Burlingame A, Sali A, Frankel AD, Krogan NJ (2011). Global landscape of HIV-human protein complexes. Nature, 481(7381), 365-70.
  22. Zhai Q, Landesman MB, Chung HY, Dierkers A, Jeffries CM, Trewhella J, Hill CP, Sundquist WI (2011). Activation of the retroviral budding factor ALIX. J Virol, 85(17), 9222-6.
  23. Morita E, Sandrin V, McCullough J, Katsuyama A, Baci Hamilton I, Sundquist WI (2011). ESCRT-III protein requirements for HIV-1 budding. Cell Host Microbe, 9(3), 235-42.
  24. Ganser-Pornillos BK, Chandrasekaran V, Pornillos O, Sodroski JG, Sundquist WI, Yeager M (2011). Hexagonal assembly of a restricting TRIM5alpha protein. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 108(2), 534-9.
  25. Arrigoni R, Alam SL, Wamstad JA, Bardwell VJ, Sundquist WI, Schreiber-Agus N (2006). The Polycomb-associated protein Rybp is a ubiquitin binding protein. FEBS Lett, 580(26), 6233-41.
  26. Hollis LS, Miller AV, Amundsen AR, Stern EW, Sundquist WI, Toney J, Burstyn JN, Heiger W, Lippard SJ (08/01/1989). Chemical and biological studies of new platinum antitumor agents. J Inorg Biochem, 36(3-4), 151-372.


  1. Sundquist WI, Ullman KS (2015). An ESCRT to seal the envelope. Science, 6241(6241), 1314-1315.
  2. Pickett CL, Corbe BW, Matthews CR, Sundquist WI, Berg JM (01/01/2015). Toward a Sustainable Biomedical Research Enterprise: Finding Consensus and Implementing Recommendations. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 112(35), 10832–10836.
  3. McCullough J, Sundquist WI (2014). Putting a finger in the ring. Nat Struct Biol, 21(12), 1025–1027.
  4. Rey FA, Sundquist WI (04/01/2013). Macromolecular Assemblies. Curr Opin Struct Biol, 23(2), 224–228.
  5. Sundquist WI, Krug RM (04/01/2012). Assemble, Replicate, Remodel and Evade. Curr Opin Virol, 2(2), 111-220.
  6. Rey FA, Sundquist WI (04/01/2011). Macromolecular Assemblages. Curr Opin Struct Biol, 21(2), 221-222.


  1. Sundquist WI, Matthews RC 2016 (2016). Analyzing the staff scientist workforce. ASBMB Today.
  2. Sundquist WI, Corb B (September 2016). Creating a robust research enterprise. ASBMB Today.