We study the molecular logic of adhesion GPCRs in health and disease.

We investigate molecular actors that belong to the class of adhesion-type G protein-coupled receptors. These molecules form a large group of surface receptors that constitute natural chimeras between an extracellular adhesion moiety and a transmembrane metabotropic signalling unit.


We have discovered that specific adhesion GPCRs control developmental processes such as planar cell polarity and cell migration, and have contributed to the understanding how adhesion and signalling is functionally combined within these mysterious surface receptors.

Recently we have defined adhesion GPCRs as mechanoreceptors suggesting a novel scientific angle to study and understand their physiological profiles in a multitude of tissues and cell types including neurons, glia, muscle, vasculature and the heart.


We are also harnessing our knowledge to understand how adhesion GPCR dysfunction results in disease with focus on cancers and neuropsychiatric disorders. To this end we closely collaborate with clinician scientists and human geneticists to identify adhesion GPCR gene variants that cause human ailments.

We study these phenomena using the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster and the the roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans and employ their vast genetic, molecular biological, imaging and functional toolkits. This is complemented by in vitro and in silico approaches encompassing molecular modifications through genetic code expansion and bioorthogonal click chemistry, pharmacological and cell biological assays, super-resolution and atomic force microscopy, structural biology, and molecular dynamics simulations.



Steffen Altrichter

PhD Student

Genevieve Auger

PhD Student

Marina Bigl, PhD

Group Leader

Beatriz Blanco-Redondo, PhD

Group Leader

Andrea Böhme


Ina Brauer

PhD Student

Fernando Vieira Contreras

PhD Student

Anna Dahse


Daniella Hall

PhD Student

Kerstin Heise


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Mareike Hemberger

MSc Student

Marek Körner

BSc Student

Head of Department

Susann Lautenschläger


Dmitrij Ljaschenko, PhD

Group Leader

Bianca Löffler


Lena Müller

BSc Student

Nicole Scholz, PhD

Group Leader

Frank Struck


Robert Wieduwild, PhD

Guest Researcher

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Robin Fischer

Diploma Student (Biology)

Jennifer Gehring

Diploma (Biology) and PhD Student

Chonglin Guan

PhD Student

Maria Oppmann


Samuel Widmann


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Matthias Nieberler

MD Student

Angelika Schäfer


Lydia Morris

Professional Training Year Student (Cardiff University)