Biophysics of Cellular Signal Transduction

The group studies signaling processes in various sensory cells and in spermatozoa. How is a stimulus, for example a photon in photoreceptor cells or an attractant molecule in spermatozoa, converted into an electrical signal? We use modern kinetic and spectroscopic methods to understand the underlying processes and mechanisms at the cellular and protein level and to identify the molecules involved. Recently, we have been using fast EPR techniques to kinetically and spatially resolve conformational changes in proteins. This work is done in close collaboration with Olav Schiemann (Univ. Bonn) and Helmut Grubmüller (MPI-NAT). Finally, we aim to determine the copy numbers of proteins from different signaling pathways in human spermatozoa using MS. This research project is done in close collaboration with Henning Urlaub (MPI-NAT). 

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