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David S. Goodsell, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Molecular Biology
Department of Integrative Structural and Computational Biology
California Campus
Laboratory Website
Scripps VIVO Scientific Profile
(858) 784-2839

Other Joint Appointments

Center for Integrative Proteomics Research, Rutgers State University of New Jersey

Research Focus

Computer graphics and simulation are used to study structure/function relationships in key biological systems. Current projects include design of compounds to fight drug resistance in HIV, and development of AutoDock, our general computational docking method. Science outreach is also a strong focus of the lab, with projects such as the "Molecule of the Month," a feature at the RCSB Protein Data Bank that presents the structure and function of a new molecule each month, and several illustrated books on biological molecules, their diverse roles within living cells, and the growing connections between biology and nanotechnology.


Ph.D. (Biochemistry), University of California, Los Angeles 1987
B.S. (Biology), University of California, Irvine 1982
B.S. (Chemistry), University of California, Irvine 1982

Professional Experience

Research and Teaching Assistant, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of California at Los Angeles, 1982-1987. Graduate Advisor: Richard E. Dickerson.
Research Associate, Department of Molecular Biology, Research Institute of Scripps Clinic, 1987-1990. Postdoctoral Advisor: Arthur J. Olson.
Scientific Associate, Department of Molecular Biology, Research Institute of Scripps Clinic, 1990-1992. Postdoctoral Advisor: Arthur J. Olson.
Assistant Researcher, Molecular Biology Institute, University of California at Los Angeles, 1992-1994. Research Director: Richard E. Dickerson.

Awards & Professional Activities

Vesalius Trust Frank Netter Award for Special Contributions to Health Science Education, 1999
Association of Medical Illustrators Literary Award, 2000
Best Wide Age Appeal Award, SIGKIDS at SIGGRAPH, 2003, for "Chemystery"
Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge, 2003, National Science Foundation, Second Place in Illustration, for "Macrophage and Bacterium, 2,000,000X." See Science 301, pg. 1477, 2003.
Art in Crystallography Prize, 2005, American Crystallographic Association, First Place, for "Blood 2,000,000X."
Overall Winner, 2016, Wellcome Image Awards, for "Ebola Virus 2,000,000X"

Selected References

All Publications

Rosin, C.D., Belew, R.K., Morris, G.M., Olson, A.J. & Goodsell, D.S. Coevolutionary Analysis of Resistance-Evading HIV-1 Protease Inhibitors. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 96, 1369-1374, 1999.

Goodsell, D.S. & Olson, A.J. Structural Symmetry and Protein Function. Ann. Rev. Biophys. Biomol. Struct. 29, 105-153, 2000.

Goodsell, D.S. Biomolecules and Nanotechnology. Am. Scientist 88, 230-237, 2000.

Zhao S., Morris, G.M., Olson, A.J. & Goodsell, D.S. Recognition Templates for Predicting Adenylate-binding Sites in Proteins. J. Mol. Biol. 314, 1245-1255, 2001.

Goodsell, D. S. (2005) Visual Methods from Atoms to Cells. Structure 13, 347-354.

Huey, R., Morris, G. M., Olson, A. J. & Goodsell, D. S. (2007) A Semi-empirical Free Energy Force Field with Charge-based Desolvation. J. Comp. Chem. 28, 1145-1152.

Goodsell, D. S. (2007) Making the Step from Chemistry to Biology and Back. Nature Chem. Biol. 3, 681-684.

Harris, R., Olson, A. J. & Goodsell, D. S. (2007) Automated Prediction of Ligand-Binding Sites in Proteins. Proteins Struct. Funct. Bioinf. 70, 1506-1517.

Chang, M. W., Belew, R. K., Carroll, K. S., Olson, A. J. & Goodsell, D. S. (2008) Empirical Entropic Contributions in Computational Docking: Evaluation in APS Reductase Complexes. J. Comput. Chem. 29, 1753-1761.

Goodsell, D. S. (2009) Illustrating the Machinery of Life: Escherichia coli. Biochem. Mol. Biol. Education 37, 325-332.

Goodsell, D. S. (2010) Illustrating the Machinery of Life: Mitochondrion Biochem. Mol. Biol. Education 38, 134-140.

Morris, G. M., Huey, R., Lindstrom, W., Sanner, M. F., Belew, R. K., Goodsell, D. S. & Olson, A. J. (2009) AutoDock4 and AutoDockTools4: Automated Docking with Selective Receptor Flexibility. J. Comp. Chem. 30, 2785-2791.

Cosconati, S., Forli, S., Perryman, A. L., Harris, R., Goodsell, D.S. & Olson, A.J. (2010) Virtual Screening with AutoDock: theory and practice. Expert Opinion in Drug Discovery 5, 597-607.

O'Donoghue, S. I., Goodsell, D. S., Frangakis, A. S., Jossinet, F., Laskowski, R. A., Nilges, M., Saibil, H. R., Schafferhans, A., Wade, R. C., Westhof, E. & Olson, A. J. (2010) Visualization of Macromolecular Structures. Nature Methods 7, S42-S55

Dutta, S., Zardecki, C., Goodsell, D. S. & Berman, H. M. (2010) Promoting a Structure View of Biology for Varied Audiences: An Overview of RCSB PDB Resources and Experiences. J. Appl. Cryst. 43(5), 1224-1229.

Goodsell, D. S. (2010) The Protein Data Bank: Exploring Biomolecular Structure. Nature Education 3(9): 39.

Goodsell, D. S. (2011) Illustrating the Machinery of Life: Eukaryotic Cell Panorama. Biochem. Mol. Biol. Education 39, 91-101.

Johnson, G.T., Autin, L., Goodsell. D. S., Sanner, M. F. & Olson, A. J. (2011) ePMV Embeds Molecular Modeling into Professional Animation Software Environments. Structure 19, 293-303.

Leonard, S. E., Garcia, F. J., Goodsell, D. S. & Carroll, K. S. (2011) Redox-based Probes for Protein Tyrosine Phosphatases. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 50, 4423-4427.

Cosconati, S., Marinella, L., Di Leva, F. S., La Pietra, V., De Simone, A., Mancini, F., Andrisano, V., Novellino, E., Goodsell, D. S. & Olson, A. J. (2012) Protein Flexibility in Virtual Screening: The BACE-1 Case Study. J. Chem. Inf. Model. 52, 2697-2704.

Goodsell, D. S. (2012) Illustrating the Machinery of Life: Viruses. Biochem. Mol. Biol. Education 40, 291-296.

Goodsell, D. S. (2012) Putting Proteins in Context. Bioessays 34, 718-720.

Batiza, A. F., Gruhl, M., Zhang, B., Harrington, T., Roberts, M., LaFlamme, D., Haasch, M. A., Knopp, J.M., Vogt, G., Goodsell, D., Hagedorn, E., Marcey, D., Hoelzer, M. & Nelson, D. (2013) The effects of the SUN project on teacher knowledge and self-efficacy regarding biological energy transfer are significant and long-lasting: results of a randomized controlled trial. CBE-Life Science Education 12, 287-305.

Span, E. A., Goodsell, D. S., Ramchandran, R., Franzen, M. A., Herman, T. & Sem, D. S. (2013) Protein structure in context: the molecular landscape of angiogenesis. Biochem. Mol. Biol. Education 41, 213-223.

Goodsell, D. S., Burley, S. K. & Berman, H. M. (2013) Revealing structural views of biology. Biopolymers 99, 817-824.

Johnson, G. T., Goodsell, D. S., Autin, L., Forli, S., Sanner, M. F. & Olson, A. J. (2014) 3D molecular models of whole HIV-1 virions generated with cellPACK. Faraday Discuss. DOI 10.1039/c4fd00017j.

Rose, P. W., Prlic, A., Bi, C., Bluhm, W. F., Christie, C. H., Dutta, S., Green, R. K., Goodsell, D. S., Westbrook, J. D., Woo, J., Young, J., Zardecki, C., Berman, H. M., Bourne, P. E. & Burley, S. K. (2015) The RCSB Protein Data Bank: views of structural biology for basic and applied research and education. Nucleic Acids Research 43, D345-D356. Doi 10.1093/nar/gku1214.

Goodsell, D. S., Dutta, S., Zardecki, C., Voigt, M., Berman, H. M. & Burley, S. K. (2015) The RCSB PDB "Molecule of the Month": Inspiring a molecular view of biology. PLoS Biology 13(5), e1002140. DOI:10.1371/journal.pbio.1002140.

Goodsell, D. S. (2015) Illustrations of the HIV life cycle. Curr. Top. Microbiol. Immunol. 389, 243-252.

Johnson, G. T., Autin, L., Al-Alusi, M. Goodsell, D. S., Sanner, M. F. & Olson, A. J. (2015) cellPACK: A virtual mesoscope to model and visualize structural systems biology. Nat. Methods 12, 85-91.

Ravindranath, P. A., Forli, S., Goodsell, D. S., Olson, A. J. & Sanner, M. F. (2015) AutoDockFR: Advances in protein-ligand docking with explicitly specified binding site flexibility. PLoS Computational Biology 11(12), e1004586. DOI:10.1371/journal.pcbi/1004586.

Forli, S., Huey, R., Pique, M. E., Sanner, M. F., Goodsell, D. S. & Olson, A. J. (2016) Computational protein-ligand docking and virtual drug screening with the AutoDock suite. Nat. Protocols 11, 905-919.

Goodsell, D. S. (2016) Cellular Landscapes in Watercolor. J. Biocommunication 40, 22-26.


Molecular Art | Molecular Science: Home of David S. Goodsell