Department Cell Biology of the Skin

The Department of Cell Biology of the Skin – AG Niessen aims at understanding how regulation of cell structure determines the shape and function of epithelial barriers. We ask how regulators of cell architecture integrate with signals that control metabolism, inflammation and growth to control the formation and maintenance of the multilayered epidermal skin barrier and how alterations in these biomechanical networks result in disease.

Mission of the lab: Understanding how cell shape determines tissue function

The Niessen laboratory aims at understanding how adhesion, mechanical and biochemical signals integrate to establish and regenerate stratifying epithelial barriers. The explicit aim is to understand how these signals coordinate cell shape, fate and position within the tissue. We focus on the skin epidermis as this provides a paradigm for spatial separation of differentiation states in distinct compartments.

Research projects


Successful defense of the master's thesis

I successfully completed my master’s thesis defence regarding the mechanistic insight in epidermal adherens junction communication to mechanical stress protection. Throughout the one-year research, we…

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Congratulations to our medical student Lukas Koch, who won the FOR5504 MD fellowship!

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Lab Retreat- Rafting on the Rhein

We made very good use of the (maybe) last day of summer and spent a great day on the Rhein!

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BBQ and goodbye Sally!

Also this year we had a nice BBQ evening with the AG Karstedt.
At the same time we had to say goodbye to our colleague Sally and wish her all the best for her future!

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