Alf Honigmann

MPI-CBG | Group Leader

Website Contact

  • Basic Research

    Structure of membrane
    Cell Polarity, homeostasis

  • Technology & Resources


Project Description

Formation and maintenance of epithelial sheets are key processes during embryogenesis, organ formation and disease. To form functional tissue, epithelial cells compartmentalize their plasma membrane into apical, lateral and basal domains with distinct molecular composition and function. My group aims to understand how mechano-chemical interaction networks at the cell membrane drive the formation of epithelial compartmentalization. We conceptualize the membrane – cortex interface as a composite material of four layers (from outside to inside): (anti)adhesion, lipid membrane, adapter layer, cortex layer. To understand how these layers function and how they are coupled with one another we combine biochemical reconstitutions, 3D super-resolution STED microscopy and 3D cell culture. Currently we focus on the structure and function of the apical junctional complex, because it is a critical integration point for epithelial adhesion, polarization and signalling.

Our long term goal is to understand how polarization, e.g. compartmentalization, couples to cell fate decision during developmental processes like organogenesis. To answer this question, we started to set-up an organoid system (neural tube), which will enable us to systematically perturb polarization in the context of differentiation and characterize the system with high spatio-temporal resolution.

  • Collection of Lipid Center relevant Publications

    Gao M, Maraspini R, Beutel O, Zehtabian A, Eickholt B, Honigmann A, Ewers H. Expansion Stimulated Emission Depletion Microscopy (ExSTED). ACS Nano. 2018 May 22;12(5):4178-4185

    Verboogen DRJ, Ter Beest M, Honigmann A, van den Bogaart G. Secretory vesicles of immune cells contain only a limited number of interleukin 6 molecules. FEBS Lett. 2018 May;592(9):1535-1544

    Honigmann A, Nadler A. The Next Frontier: Quantitative Biochemistry in Living Cells. Biochemistry. 2018 Jan 9;57(1):47-55

    Maraspini R, Beutel O, Honigmann A. Circle scanning STED fluorescence correlation spectroscopy to quantify membrane dynamics and compartmentalization. Methods. 2018 May 1;140-141:188-197

    Steringer JP, Lange S, Čujová S, Šachl R, Poojari C, Lolicato F, Beutel O, Müller HM, Unger S, Coskun Ü, Honigmann A, Vattulainen I, Hof M, Freund C, Nickel W. Key steps in unconventional secretion of fibroblast growth factor 2 reconstituted with purified components. Elife. 2017 Jul 19;6. pii: e28985

    Baranov MV, Revelo NH, Dingjan I, Maraspini R, Ter Beest M, Honigmann A, van den Bogaart G. SWAP70 Organizes the Actin Cytoskeleton and Is Essential for Phagocytosis. Cell Rep. 2016 Nov 1;17(6):1518-1531

    Honigmann A, Pralle A. Compartmentalization of the Cell Membrane. J Mol Biol. 2016 Dec 4;428(24 Pt A):4739-4748

    Steshenko O, Andrade DM, Honigmann A, Mueller V, Schneider F, Sezgin E, Hell SW, Simons M, Eggeling C. Reorganization of Lipid Diffusion by Myelin Basic Protein as Revealed by STED Nanoscopy. Biophys J. 2016 Jun 7;110(11):2441-2450

    Eggeling C, Honigmann A. Closing the gap: The approach of optical and computational microscopy to uncover biomembrane organization. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2016 Oct;1858(10):2558-2568

    Milovanovic D, Platen M, Junius M, Diederichsen U, Schaap IA, Honigmann A, Jahn R, van den Bogaart G. Calcium Promotes the Formation of Syntaxin 1 Mesoscale Domains through Phosphatidylinositol 4,5-Bisphosphate. J Biol Chem. 2016 Apr 8;291(15):7868-76

    Sezgin E, Can FB, Schneider F, Clausen MP, Galiani S, Stanly TA, Waithe D, Colaco A, Honigmann A, Wüstner D, Platt F, Eggeling C. A comparative study on fluorescent cholesterol analogs as versatile cellular reporters. J Lipid Res. 2016 Feb;57(2):299-309

    Sevcsik E, Brameshuber M, Fölser M, Weghuber J, Honigmann A, Schütz GJ. GPI-anchored proteins do not reside in ordered domains in the live cell plasma membrane. Nat Commun. 2015 Apr 21;6:6969

    Vicidomini G, Ta H, Honigmann A, Mueller V, Clausen MP, Waithe D, Galiani S, Sezgin E, Diaspro A, Hell SW, Eggeling C. STED-FLCS: An Advanced Tool to Reveal Spatiotemporal Heterogeneity of Molecular Membrane Dynamics. Nano Lett. 2015 Sep 9;15(9):5912-8

    Hell SW, Sahl SJ, Bates M, Zhuang X, Heintzmann R, Booth MJ, Bewersdorf J, Shtengel G, Hess H, Tinnefeld P, Honigmann A, Jakobs S, Testa I, Cognet L, Lounis B, Ewers H, Davis SJ, Eggeling C, Klenerman D, Willig KI, Vicidomini G, Castello M, Diaspro A, Cordes T. The 2015 super-resolution microscopy roadmap. J Phys D: Appl Phys. 2015, 48(44) Art. No. 443001