Van Engelenburg

Schuyler Van Engelenburg

Associate Professor

  • Faculty

What I do

Researching the mechanisms of viral biogenesis and educating the next generation of virologists and cellular biophysicits.


virology, cellular biophysics, imaging

Professional Biography

I have an interdisciplinary background in the fields of virology, cellular biology, chemistry, and biophysics. My post-doctoral work at the National Institutes of Health focused on understanding how a single HIV particle is formed in an infected cell using single molecule imaging approaches. Here at DU I am focused on developing new imaging technologies to better understand how single viruses are "born", while also teaching both undergraduate and graduate students the fields of virology and cellular biophysics.


  • Ph.D., Biochemistry, Universit y of Colorado, 2010
  • BS, Chemistry, Fort Lewis College, 2005

Professional Affiliations

  • American Society for Microbiology
  • Biophysical Society
  • American Society of Virology


Viral pathogens still plague our modern society despite the promise of highly effective therapies. Tremendous advances in our understanding of the genetics, biochemistry, and cellular pathology of viral infections are, however, beginning to fill the gaps in our knowledge and leading to new antiviral therapies. Nevertheless, many gaps remain in our understanding of the nanoscale and molecular dynamics of viral entry, replication, and assembly. As such, my laboratory focuses on developing cutting-edge multidisciplinary techniques to understand the host-viral interface on a truly molecular level. Specifically, this includes advanced superresolution microscopy techniques, protein chemistry and probe development, and computational image analysis to quantitatively understand the cellular, biochemical, and genetic drivers of HIV-1 assembly. To this end, my research is aimed at constructing molecularly accurate spatial and temporal models for HIV biogenesis. It is my hope that by pinpointing the weaknesses and dependencies of HIV assembly, that future research will lead to the development of new antiviral therapies targeting the assembly stage of the infection cycle.

Areas of Research

Virus Assembly
Single Molecule Imaging Approaches
Cellular Biophysics

Key Projects

  • Identifying determinants of HIV-1 responsible for the nanoscale distribution and dynamics of virus assembly
  • Defining the three-dimensional organization and dynamics of HIV-1 envelope using superresolution microsopy
  • Boettcher Foundations Webb-Waring Biomedical Research Award

Featured Publications

Groves, N. S., Bruns, M. M., & van Engelenburg, S. B. (1969). A Quantitative Live-Cell Superresolution Imaging Framework for Measuring the Mobility of Single Molecules At Sites of Virus Assembly. Pathogens, 9(11), 972.
Pezeshkian, N., Groves, N. S., & Van Engelenburg, S. (2019). Single molecule imaging of HIV-1 Envelope dynamics and Gag lattice association exposes determinants responsible for virus incorporation. Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences U.S.A., 116(50), 25269-25277.
Buttler, C. A., Pezeshkian, N., Norman, S., Fernandez, M. V., Aaron, J., Freed, E. O., & Van Engelenburg, S. (2018). Single molecule fate of HIV-1 envelope reveals late-stage viral lattice incorporation. Nature Communications, 9(1), 1861.
Lippincott-Schwartz, J., Freed, E. O., & Van Engelenburg, S. (1969). A Consensus View of ESCRT-Mediated HIV-1 Abscission. Annual Reviews in Virology, 4(1), 309-325.
Paez Segala, G. G., Shtengel, G., Sochaki, K., Sun, M., Taraska, J., van Engelenburg, S. B., et al. (Eds.). (2017). Diverse protocols for correlative super-resolution fluorescence imaging and electron microscopy of chemically fixed samples. Nature Protocols, 12(5), 916-946.


Van Engelenburg, S. (2019). Spying on HIV-1 Envelope to uncover the mechanisms of virus incorporation. Cold Spring Harbor: Retroviruses. CSHL.
Van Engelenburg, S. (2019). Pushing the Envelope: Toward a Nanoscale Model of HIV-1 Biogenesis. HHMI Janelia Advanced Microscopy Conference. Ashburn, VA: Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
Van Engelenburg, S. (2018). Single trimer fate of HIV-1 Envelope during virus assembly. 2018 International Workshop on: gp41 Cytoplasmic Tail Structure and Function. Frederick, MD, USA: National Cancer Institute.
Van Engelenburg, S. (2018). Pushing the Envelope: Toward a Nanoscale Model of HIV-1 Assembly. Biophysical Society 62nd Annual Meeting. San Francisco, CA: Biophysical Society.
Van Engelenburg, S. (2015). 3D Multicolor HIV Biogenesis Imaging using Single Cluster Reconstruction. SUPER-RESOLUTION MICROSCOPY IN INFECTION AND IMMUNITY SYMPOSIUM. Lisbon, Portugal: Gulbenkian Institute.


  • Outstanding Junior Faculty Award, University of Denver, NSM
  • Webb-Waring Biomedical Research Award, Boettcher Foundation
  • Advanced Imaging Center Grant, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
  • Boettcher Foundation Collaboration Grant, Boettcher Foundation
  • NICHD Mentor of the Year Award, National Institute of Child Health and Development