As the Biophysical Society continues to grow, the Society's subgroups allow members to meet and interact within more focused areas in smaller groups. Subgroups hold scientific symposia and business meetings each year on the Saturday that starts the Annual Meeting. They also sponsor several awards, including the Student Research Achievement Awards (SRAA) Poster Competition.

Membership to the Society's subgroups is open to all members. New subgroups may be formed by petition, signed by at least 100 regular members. The petition and accompanying bylaws need to be approved by Council.

Membrane Biophysics

The Membrane Biophysics Subgroup promotes the exchange of ideas and information pertaining to the study of biological membranes. Subgroup members pursue research in a variety of areas including the structure, function and regulation of channels and transporters, ligand-receptor interactions, signal transduction mechanisms, protein trafficking and secretory mechanisms. Each year the subgroup sponsors a symposium highlighting an area of membrane biophysics. The symposium is followed by a dinner at which the K.S. Cole Award in Membrane Biophysics is presented to a person who is deemed to have made seminal contributions to the field, followed by a short address by the recipient. Membership in the subgroup is open to all members of the Biophysical Society.

Join the Membrane Biophysics Subgroup Kenneth S. Cole Award


In order to join the Membrane Biophysics Subgroup, you must be a member of the Society.

Andrew Plested, Chair (2019)

Crina Nimigean, Chair-Elect (2020)

Matthew Trudeau, Secretary-Treasurer (2020) 


2018 Jose Faraldo-Gomez NIH
2017 Teresa Giraldez Universidad de La Laguna, Spain
2016  Alessio Accardi Weill Cornell Medical College
2015 Baron Chanda University of Wisconsin, Madison
2014  Henry Colecraft Columbia University 
2013 Diomedes Logothetis Virginia Commonwealth University
2012 Paul Slesinger Salk Institute
2011 Stephen Tucker University of Oxford, UK
2010 Dan Minor University of California, San Francisco
2009 Criss Hartzell Emory University School of Medicine
2008 Eitan Reuveny Weizmann Institutes of Science, Israel
2007 Nael A. McCarty Emory University School of Medicine
2006 David Yue Johns Hopkins University
2005 Deborah Nelson University of Chicago
2004 Colin Nichols Washington University School of Medicine
2003 Barbara Ehrlich Yale University School of Medicine
2002 Robert French University of Calgary
2001 Lynne Quarmby Simon Fraser University
2000 David C. Dawson Oregon Health Science University
1999 Sarah S. Garber University of Chicago Medical School
1998 Joseph R. Hume University of Nevada Medical School
1997 Carol Vandenberg University of California, Santa Barbara
1996 Douglas C. Eaton Emory University 
1995 Barbara Ehrlich Yale University School of Medicine
1994 John M. Russell Syracuse University
1993 Richard Aldrich Stanford University School of Medicine
1992 David L. Gadsby Rockefeller University
1991 Kurt Beam  Colorado State University
1990 Michael L. Jennings University of Arkansas
1989 Jack H. Kaplan University of Illinois, Chicago
1988 Alan Kleinfeld Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies
1987 Douglas C. Eaton Emory University
1986 Peter K. Lauf Wright State University School of Medicine
1985 Nicholas Sperelakis University of Cincinnati College of Medicine
1984 John Cook University of Tennessee
1983 Adil Shamoo University of Maryland School of Medicine
1982 George Sachs University of California, Los Angeles
1981 George Sachs University of California, Los Angeles
1980 Robert Blumenthal National Institutes of Health
1979 Richard Pagano Mayo Clinic & Foundation
1978 Stephen H. White University of California, Irvine
1977 Charles F. Stevens Salk Institute for Biological Studies
1976 Clay M. Armstrong University of Pennsylvania
1975 David E. Goldman Medical College of Pennsylvania
1974 Peter F. Curran Yale University
1973 Warren Rehm University of Louisville
1972 J. Walter Woodbury University of Utah

2018 Symposium

Saturday, February 17, 2018
San Francisco, California
1:00 PM–6:00 PM

View Program

2017 Symposium

Saturday, February 11, 2017
New Orleans, Louisiana
1:00 PM–5:30 PM

View Program


2016 Symposium

Saturday, February 27, 2016
Los Angeles, California
1:00 PM–6:00 PM

View Program


2015 Symposium

Saturday, February 27, 2015
Baltimore, Maryland
1:00 PM–6:00 PM

View Program


2014 Symposium

Saturday, February 15, 2014
San Francisco, California
1:00 PM–6:00 PM

View Program


2013 Symposium

Saturday, February 2, 2013
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1:00 PM–4:40 PM

View Program


2017 Sensors
2016 Unusual Mechanisms in Membrane Transport
2015  Modern Perspective of Allostery in Ion Channels 
2014  Necessary (Accessory) Subunits of Ion Channels: What They Do and How They Do It 
2013 Macromolecular Complexes of Ion Channels and Transporters
2011 Single Molecule Approaches to Ion Channel Structure
2010 Ion Channel Chemical Biology
2009  Ion Channels with Borderline Personalities
2008 Channel Gating Modifiers and Modulators
2007 Reducing Reductionist Thinking: Biophysical Approaches to the Study of Membrane Protein Assemblies
2006 Horizons for the Queen of Ion Transport: CaV Calcium Channels
2005 Intracellular Ion Channels: Trafficking, Regulation, and Function
2004 Ion Channel Gating
2003 Protein Partners in the Regulation of Intracellular Calcium: No Singles Allowed
2002 Molecular Motions Underlying Ion Channel Gating
2001 Calcium Signaling
2000 Physical Basis of Ion Selectivity: From Bias to Recognition
1999 Ion Channels and the Cytoskeleton
1998 Structure and Function of CLC Chloride Channels
1997 Ion Channels: Structure and Function
1996 Mechanisms of Cellular Signaling
1995 Probing the Pore of Ion Channels
1994 Chloride Channels: Diversity in Form and Function
1993 Molecular and Biophysical Properties of Calcium-activated Potassium Channels
1992 Transducer Molecules of Cell Membranes
1991 n/a
1990 Kinetic Studies of Membrane Functions
1989 Ion Transport across Biomembranes
1988 Lipid Transfer between Membranes and Vesicles
1987 Cellular Polarity: Intracellular Sorting and Membrane Insertion
1986 Chemical Modification and Probes of Major Ion Transport Pathways
1985 Properties of Single Ion Channels as Revealed by Patch Clamp Studies
1984 Mechanisms Underlying Membrane Fusion
1983 Molecular Mechanisms of Hormonal Reculations of Ion Transport
1982 Plasma Membrane Pumps
1981 Eyring Models in Membrane Science
1980 Assembly of Proteins into Biological Membranes
1979 Organization, Dynamics, and Metabolism of Cell Surface Lipids
1978 Interactions between Membrane Components
1977 Local Anesthetic Effects on Ionic and Molecular Motions in Membranes
1976 Joint Photobiology - Membrane Group Symposium
1975 Recent Studies on Membrane Structure
1974 Physical and Chemical Probes of Membrane Structure and Function
1973  Membranes: Recent Advances 
1972  Molecular Mechanisms for Ion Selectivity in Membrane Transport Processes 

2017 Kenton J. Swartz National Institutes of Health
2016 Roderick MacKinnon  Rockefeller University 
2015 Walter Stuhmer Max Planck Institute
  William Catterall University of Washington
  Todd Scheuer University of Washington
2014 David Julius University of California, San Francisco
2013 Frederick Sachs University of Buffalo, State University of New York
2012 Meyer Jackson University of Wisconsin, Madison
2011 David T. Yue Johns Hopkins University
2010 Ehud Isacoff University of California, Berkeley
2009 Karl L. Magleby University of Miami Miller School of Medicine
2008 William N. Zagotta University of Washington
2007 Henry A. Lester California Institute of Technology
2006 Edwin W. McCleskey Vollum Institute, Oregon Health and Science University
2005 Barbara E. Ehrlich Yale University
2004 Lily Yeh Jan University of California, San Francisco, HHMI
  Yuh Nung Jan University of California, San Francisco, HHMI
2003 Gary Yellen Harvard Medical School
2002 Kurt Beam Colorado State University
2001 Mike Cahalan University of California, Irvine
2000 Richard Horn Thomas Jefferson Medical College
1999 Olaf Andersen Weill Medical College of Cornell University
1998 W. J. Lederer Medical Biotechnology Center UMBI
1997 Fred Sigworth Yale University School of Medicine
1996 David Clapham Mayo Foundation
1995 David Gadsby Rockefeller University
1994 Richard W. Aldrich Stanford University School of Medicine
1993 Harald Reuter University of Bern
1992 Wolfhard Almers Oregon Health Science University
1991 James Hudspeth Rockefeller University, HHMI
1990 Francisco Bezanilla University of California, Los Angeles
1989 Clara Franzini-Armstrong University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
  Knox Chandler Yale University School of Medicine
1988 H. Ronald Kaback University of California, Los Angeles
1987 Robert B. Gunn Emory University School of Medicine
  Philip A. Knauf University of Rochester Medical Center
1986 Christopher Miller Brandeis University, HHMI
1985 Richard W. Tsien Stanford University School of Medicine
1984 Mauricio Montal University of California, San Diego
1983 Robert Post Vanderbilt University
1982 Erwin Neher Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry
1981 John Moore Duke University Medical Center
  Toshiro Narahashi Northwestern University Medical Center
1980 Thomas Thompson University of Virginia Health Science Center
  Demetrios Papahadjopoulos Roswell Park Memorial Hospital
1979 Michael Edidin Johns Hopkins University
  Richard Cone Johns Hopkins University
1978 Alan Finkelstein Albert Einstein College of Medicine
1977 Paul Mueller Eastern Pennsylvania Psychiatric Unit
1976 Susumu Hagiwara University of California, Los Angeles
1975 Peter Curran (Posthumous) Yale University
1974 Clay Armstrong University of Pennsylvania 
1973 Bertil Hille University of Washington
  David Goldman Naval Medical Research Institute



Article 1

Name: The name of this Group is the Membrane Biophysics Group.

Article 2

Objective: The objective of this Group is to promote the interchange of information about membranes between members of the Group and others interested in membranes, and to foster the advance of knowledge about membranes.

Article 3

Membership: A Group member is any Society member who submits his name to the Secretary-Treasurer and who has paid his dues for the current year.

Affiliates: An Affiliate is a non-member of the Society who submits his name to the Secretary-Treasurer and who has paid his dues for the current year. Affiliates will receive mailings to the Group and such other services or activities as may be made available to members. Affiliates may not vote or hold office.

Article 4

Dues: Dues may be assessed to cover the necessary expenses related to operation of the Group. The amount and means of collection are described in Article 12.

Article 5

Operation: The Group will be operated by the Group Chair, an Advisory Committee consisting of four members, and a Secretary-Treasurer.

Duties of the Group Chair are to organize and conduct Group Meetings, to advise the Biophysical Society of the activities and needs of the group, to advise the Society on matters related to membranes, and any other activities the Chair deems to be beneficial to the group and to the Society.
Duties of the Advisory Committee are to advise the Group Chair on the organization of Group meetings, and other matters of interest to the Group and to make nominations for their successors and for the group Chair.

The Secretary-Treasurer will maintain adequate records of membership and finances, and carry on necessary correspondence. The Secretary-Treasurer is an ex-officio member of the Advisory Committee.

Article 6

Term of Office: The Group Chair and members of the Advisory Committee will serve for one year. There is no fixed term of office for the Secretary-Treasurer.

Article 7

Eligibility for Office: Only members can be candidates. The Group Chair and Advisory Committee members are ineligible for re-election for one year.

Article 8

Elections: It is the intent of the Group that the Chairship shall be rotated so as to fairly represent the different specialties within the membership.

The new Chair shall be elected from a list of nominees composed of a nominee made by the retiring Chair and any other persons nominated by at least five members. The Secretary-Treasurer shall solicit nominations from the membership no less than thirty days prior to the election.

The Advisory Committee shall be selected by the Chair from nominations made by members. It is the duty of the Chair to select Advisory Committee members who represent the whole range of interests of the Group.

Article 9

Meetings: There shall be at least one meeting per year: The Annual Meeting at the time designated for Group meetings by the Council of the Biophysical Society.

Elections must be held at the Annual Meeting. Other business may be transacted by the Group at the Annual Meeting. A minimum of thirty days notice of the Annual Meeting such as publication in the Biophysical Society or Group Newsletters must be given.

Article 10

The members attending an Annual Meeting can transact Group business by a simple majority vote.

Article 11

Amendments to the By-Laws: These By-Laws can be amended by a majority of members responding to a mail ballot.

Proposals for new or amended By-Laws shall be submitted to the Secretary- Treasurer for consideration at the Annual Meeting. Proposed amendments to the By-Laws may be placed on a mail ballot by a majority vote at the Annual Meeting or at the discretion of the Chair.

Article 12

Dues: Dues are $20.00 per year.

Dues shall be collected from Group members by the Biophysical Society. Affiliates will be billed for dues directly by the Secretary-Treasurer.

Article 13

Expenditures: Any monies available to the Group may be expended by the Group Chair for the four following purposes:

  1. For direct expenses connected with the operation of the Group.
  2. To cover all or part of the expenses of persons invited to speak at the annual group meeting.
  3. To fund the Kenneth S. Cole Award.
  4. The Secretary-Treasurer may expend monies to cover the direct expenses associated with the office.

Article 14

The Kenneth S. Cole Award

It is the policy and intent of the Membrane Biophysics Group to make an award annually to some investigator who has made a substantial contribution to knowledge of membranes.

The Award shall consist of a medal and a scroll or other appropriate symbols of the Award and such monies as are available to the Group.

The money to support this Award shall come from dues, voluntary contributions from members of the Membrane Biophysics Group and any other sources which may become available.

The recipient of the Award will be selected by the immediate past Group Chair with the concurrence of the Chair and Advisory Committee. Nominations may be made by any Group member. The only restrictions on the recipient are that he cannot be the immediate past Group Chair, the Group Chair, a member of the Advisory Committee, and shall not have previously received the Award. Nominations must contain a reasoned statement, adequately documented, of the qualifications of the nominee. The Selection Committee, each year, shall establish its own criteria for selection.

Nominations must be made before November 1 of each year.

The Award should be presented by the immediate past Group Chair or his designate at the Annual Group Meeting.

The Award need not be given if a suitable candidate is not found.