Susan Hafenstein

Susan Hafenstein

Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

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Using a structural approach to learn more about viral infectivity, tropism, evolution and pathogenicity. Developing approaches to visualize critical events that cause a break from the regular symmetry of the virus, including packaging of the genome, receptor usage, antibody interactions and uncoating of the viral genome during the final stages of infection.


  • Ph.D., University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, 2003
  • B.S., Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA, 1992

Graduate Students

Publication Tags

Capsid Genome Viruses Enterovirus Cryoelectron Microscopy Antibodies Virion Epitopes Parvovirus Mutation Infection Neutralizing Antibodies Cryo Electron Microscopy Human Papillomavirus 16 Protoparvovirus Minute Virus Of Mice Immunoglobulin Fragments Dna Receptors Adenoviridae Mastadenovirus Rodent Protoparvovirus 1 Picornaviridae Rna Crystal Structure

Most Recent Papers

Examination and reconstruction of three ancient endogenous parvovirus capsid protein gene remnants found in rodent genomes

Heather M. Callaway, Suriyasri Subramanian, Christian A. Urbina, Karen N. Barnard, Robert A. Dick, Carol M. Bator, Susan Hafenstein, Robert J. Gifford, Colin R. Parrish, 2019, Journal of virology

Complex and dynamic interactions between parvovirus capsids, transferrin receptors, and antibodies control cell infection and host range

Heather M. Callaway, Kathrin Welsch, Wendy Weichert, Andrew B. Allison, Susan Hafenstein, Kai Huang, Sho Iketani, Colin R. Parrish, 2018, Journal of virology

Nuclear, cytosolic, and surface-localized poly(A)-binding proteins of Plasmodium yoelii

Allen M. Minns, Kevin J. Hart, Suriyasri Subramanian, Susan Hafenstein, Scott Eugene Lindner, 2018, mSphere

High-resolution structure analysis of antibody V5 and U4 conformational epitopes on human papillomavirus 16

Jian Guan, Stephanie M. Bywaters, Sarah A. Brendle, Robert E. Ashley, Alexander M. Makhov, James F. Conway, Neil Christensen, Susan Hafenstein, 2017, Viruses

Cryo-EM maps reveal five-fold channel structures and their modification by gatekeeper mutations in the parvovirus minute virus of mice (MVM) capsid

Suriyasri Subramanian, Lindsey J. Organtini, Alec Grossman, Phillip P. Domeier, Javier O. Cifuente, Alexander M. Makhov, James F. Conway, Anthony D'Abramo, Susan F. Cotmore, Peter Tattersall, Susan Hafenstein, 2017, Virology on p. 216-223

Cryoelectron Microscopy Maps of Human Papillomavirus 16 Reveal L2 Densities and Heparin Binding Site

Jian Guan, Stephanie M. Bywaters, Sarah A. Brendle, Robert E. Ashley, Alexander M. Makhov, James F. Conway, Neil Christensen, Susan Hafenstein, 2017, Structure on p. 253-263

MOPS and coxsackievirus B3 stability

Steven D. Carson, Susan Hafenstein, Hyunwook Lee, 2017, Virology on p. 183-187

Honey bee deformed wing virus structures reveal that conformational changes accompany genome release

Lindsey J. Organtini, Kristin L. Shingler, Robert E. Ashley, Elizabeth A. Capaldi, Kulsoom Durrani, Kelly A. Dryden, Alexander M. Makhov, James F. Conway, Marie C. Pizzorno, Susan Hafenstein, 2017, Journal of virology

Evolution and cryo-electron microscopy capsid structure of a north american bat adenovirus and its relationship to other mastadenoviruses

Nicole Hackenbrack, Matthew B. Rogers, Robert E. Ashley, M. Kevin Keel, Steven V. Kubiski, John A. Bryan, Elodie Ghedin, Edward C. Holmes, Susan Hafenstein, Andrew B. Allison, 2017, Journal of virology

Parvovirus capsid structures required for infection

Heather M. Callaway, Kurtis H. Feng, Donald W. Lee, Andrew B. Allison, Melissa Pinard, Robert McKenna, Mavis Agbandje-McKenna, Susan Hafenstein, Colin R. Parrish, 2017, Journal of Virology

Recent High-Impact Papers

Secretion of genome-free hepatitis b virus - single strand blocking model for virion morphogenesis of para-retrovirus

Xiaojun Ning, David Nguyen, Laura Mentzer, Christina Adams, Hyunwook Lee, Robert Ashley, Susan Hafenstein, Jianming Hu, 2011, PLoS Pathogens

The Enterovirus 71 A-particle Forms a Gateway to Allow Genome Release

Kristin L. Shingler, Jennifer L. Yoder, Michael S. Carnegie, Robert E. Ashley, Alexander M. Makhov, James F. Conway, Susan Hafenstein, 2013, PLoS Pathogens

Enterovirus 71 Binding to PSGL-1 on Leukocytes

Yorihiro Nishimura, Hyunwook Lee, Susan Hafenstein, Chikako Kataoka, Takaji Wakita, Jeffrey M. Bergelson, Hiroyuki Shimizu, 2013, PLoS Pathogens

Group Selection and Contribution of Minority Variants during Virus Adaptation Determines Virus Fitness and Phenotype

Antonio V. Bordería, Ofer Isakov, Gonzalo Moratorio, Rasmus Henningsson, Sonia Agüera-González, Lindsey Organtini, Nina F. Gnädig, Hervé Blanc, Andrés Alcover, Susan Hafenstein, Magnus Fontes, Noam Shomron, Marco Vignuzzi, 2015, PLoS Pathogens

A cryo-electron microscopy study identifies the complete H16.V5 epitope and reveals global conformational changes initiated by binding of the neutralizing antibody fragment

Hyunwook Lee, Sarah A. Brendle, Stephanie M. Bywaters, Jian Guan, Robert E. Ashley, Joshua D. Yoder, Alexander M. Makhov, James F. Conway, Neil Christensen, Susan Hafenstein, 2015, Journal of virology on p. 1428-1438

Depletion of virion-associated divalent cations induces parvovirus minute virus of mice to eject its genome in a 3′ -to-5′ direction from an otherwise intact viral particle

Susan F. Cotmore, Susan Hafenstein, Peter Tattersall, 2010, Journal of Virology on p. 1945-1956

A strain-specific epitope of enterovirus 71 identified by cryo-electron microscopy of the complex with fab from neutralizing antibody

Hyunwook Lee, Javier O. Cifuente, Robert E. Ashley, James F. Conway, Alexander M. Makhov, Yoshio Tano, Hiroyuki Shimizu, Yorihiro Nishimura, Susan Hafenstein, 2013, Journal of virology on p. 11363-11370

Structure of a packaging-defective mutant of minute virus of mice indicates that the genome is packaged via a pore at a 5-fold axis

Pavel Plevka, Susan Hafenstein, Lei Li, Anthony D'Abramo, Susan F. Cotmore, Michael G. Rossmann, Peter Tattersall, 2011, Journal of Virology on p. 4822-4827

Structural comparison of four different antibodies interacting with human papillomavirus 16 and mechanisms of neutralization

Jian Guan, Stephanie M. Bywaters, Sarah A. Brendle, Hyunwook Lee, Robert E. Ashley, Alexander M. Makhov, James F. Conway, Neil Christensen, Susan Hafenstein, 2015, Virology on p. 253-263

The crystal structure of a coxsackievirus B3-RD variant and a refined 9-angstrom cryo-electron microscopy reconstruction of the virus complexed with decay-accelerating factor (DAF) provide a new footprint of DAF on the virus surface

Joshua D. Yoder, Javier O. Cifuente, Jieyan Pan, Jeffrey M. Bergelson, Susan Hafenstein, 2012, Journal of Virology on p. 12571-12581