HHU StartMNFChemistrySFB 1208Projects and Open positions

Projects and Open Positions

The research in our Collaborative Research Centre is structured to the topic areas:

(A) Maintaining and changing membrane identity and (B) Trafficking within cells.
(see menu items below for detailed information)

In both areas, we will combine a highly complementary set of tools, incorporating protein biochemistry and biophysics as well as structural biology, the genetic dissection and manipulation of membrane functions, molecular physiology, proteomics and genomics approaches to set up an agenda that spans the entire function and cellular range of these membrane systems. This will unravel the mechanistic principles underlying dynamic interactions of membrane proteins and the mode of action of stimuli that result in the (re)modeling of functional networks operating across membranes, as well as the biological role of these processes. We will also identify the kinetic and thermodynamic bottlenecks and the checkpoints occurring in these systems, the lifetime of these entities due to re-cycling or turnover and the exact nature of the stimulus provoking the corresponding macroscopic functions.

Support of our networking groups, especially in refinement and development of new methods is given by the Central Projects.

Research Area A - Maintaining and changing membrane identity



Project leader(s), institution(s)

Research area


The hemolysin secretion machinery of E. coli

Lutz Schmitt,
Institute of Biochemistry

Biochemistry, biophysics,
structural biology


The role of phospholipase PlaF mediated membrane alterations for P. aeruginosa virulence adaptations

Karl-Erich Jaeger,
Filip Kovacic,
Institute of Molecular Enzyme

Molecular microbiology, biochemistry,
structural biology


Functional state modulation of membrane proteins by dynamic association and dissociation

Holger Gohlke,
Institute of Pharmaceutical and
Medicinal Chemistry

Molecular simulations, molecular bioinformatics


The role of LIPP at the host plasma membrane of invading Chlamydia

Johannes Hegemann,
Institute of Functional Microbial

Cell biology,

Positions open

Dynamics and trafficking of mGBP protein complexes within membranous compartments

Daniel Degrandi,
Klaus Pfeffer,
Institute of Medical Microbiology and Hospital Hygiene

cell biology


Unravelling the interactions of mGBP proteins with lipid membranes

Birgit Strodel,
Institute of Theoretical and
Computational Chemistry

Molecular simulations


Structure, dynamics and interactions of proteins during membrane association and dissociation studied by hp-FRET

Claus Seidel,
Institute of Molecular Physical

Biophysical spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy

Positions open

Dynamic endosomal transport and unconventional secretion

Kerstin Schipper,
Michael Feldbrügge,
Institute of Microbiology

Cell biology,
protein biochemisty


Membrane translocation and chaperone dependent folding of lipase A of Pseudomonas aeruginosa

Alexej Kedrov, Institute of Biochemistry

Biochemistry, molecular biophysics


Amphiphilic precision macromolecules to study effects of membrane dynamics

Laura Hartmann,
Institute of Organic and Macromolecular Chemistry

Biological chemistry,
polymer research


Interrogating CD95 Membrane Protein Complex Formation and Signalling for Life or Death

Cornelia Monzel,
Experimental Medical Physics

Biophysics, cell biology


Optogenetic membrane manipulation of protein targeting to mitochondria and plastids

Sven Gould,
Matias Zurbriggen,
Inst. of Molecular Evolution and Inst. of Synthetic Biology

Cell Biology, evolution of plants and fungi, plant physiology

Resaerch Area B - Trafficking within cells



Project leader(s), institution(s)

Research area


Understanding the function of Lethal (2) giant discs (Lgd) and ESCRT-III

Thomas Klein,
Institute of Genetics

Cell signaling, cell biology,
innate immunology


Specific roles of Atg8s in vesicle trafficking

Dieter Willbold,
Institute of Physical Biology

Biochemistry, biophysics, structural biology, cell biology


Intermembrane transport of CLAVATA receptors and signalling modifiers

Rüdiger Simon,
Institute of Developmental Genetics

Receptor kinases, signal transduction,
membrane proteins, stem cell development


Protein interactions for the dynamic regulation of the IRON-REGULATED TRANSPOR-TER1 (IRT1) and cellular metal trafficking

Petra Bauer,
Institute of Botany

Cell biology,
molecular plant biology, proteomics


Communication relies on copper - Receptor-metal complex formation and degradation in the ethylene receptor family

Georg Groth,
Institute of Biochemical Plant

Plant biochemistry,
structural biology

Positions open

Exploring the symbiotic interface of amoebal host and its nascent photosynthetic organelle in the amoeba Paulinella chromatophora (Rhizaria, Cercozoa)

Eva Nowack,
Institute of Microbiology

Plant biochemistry,
plant physiology


Role of DUF 3411 proteins in the interaction of plastids with the cytoplasm

Andreas Weber,
Institute of Plant Biochemistry

Cell biology,
protein membrane interaction


Role of MICOS-dependent cristae membrane dynamics within mitochondria

Andreas Reichert, Institute for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology I

Biochemistry, cell biology


The role of amino acid transporters in glutamate signaling in plants

Wolf Frommer,
Institute of Molecular Physiology

Plant physiology

Central Projects



Project leader(s), institution(s)

Research area


Information Infrastructure Project: Acquisition – Processing – Storage – Sharing: Research data management in interdisciplinary membrane research

Holger Gohlke,
Stefanie Weidtkamp-Peters,
Institute of Pharmaceutical and
Medicinal Chemistry, Center of Advanced Imaging



Characterization of membrane protein complexes by protein mass spectrometry

Kai Stühler,
Molecular Proteomics Laboratory

Proteomics, protein mass spectrometry


In vivo fluorescence imaging - Analysis of membrane protein complexes in space and time

Stefanie Weidtkamp-Peters,
Center of Advanced Imaging

Fluorescence imaging

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