Research at Molecular Microbiology

Life has evolved diverse protein machines and bacteria provide many fascinating examples.

Flagella are the primary organelles of motility in bacteria and enable movement towards nutrients and away from harmful substances, a process known as chemotaxis. Flagella-mediated motility is also important for many pathogens – including Salmonella enterica – and allows the bacteria to reach the site of infection, facilitate host-pathogen interactions, and promote biofilm formation. The bacterial flagellum is by far the most prominent extracellular structure known in bacteria and made through self-assembly of several tens of thousand individual building blocks. However, many questions concerning the regulation, organization and assembly of this remarkably complex motility organelle remain poorly understood. We use a combination of genetic engineering, biochemistry and fluorescent microscopy techniques to understand the genetic regulation, self-assembly and protein export mechanisms of this fascinating nanomachine.

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Recent news

October 18, 2023

Hannah Raasch awarded the 2023 Humboldt price. For her thesis titled "The consequences of distributed metabolic functions in microbial communities under fluctuating environments", she has been honored with the prestigious prize! Congrats!

September 26, 2023

Dr. Gita Naseri (Emmanuelle Charpentier’s laboratory at the (MPUSP) and Marc Erhardt’s laboratory at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin has been awarded a six-year grant by the Emmy Noether Program of the German Research Foundation. Continue reading!

Dezember 18, 2019

ERC consolidator grant for BacNanoMachine from the European Research Council! In the project BacNanoMachine, we aim to obtain a holistic understanding of the underlying principles that allow bacteria to control and coordinate the simultaneous self- assembly processes of several multi-component nanomachines within a single cell. Continue reading!

Lab members of Molecular Microbiology

Molecular Microbiology, lab retreat, September 2023

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