Göttinger Graduiertenschule für Neurowissenschaften, Biophysik und Molekulare Biowissenschaften

Pöhlmann, Stefan, Prof. Dr.

Professor, Head of the Infection Biology Unit, German Primate Center

  • 2000: Ph.D., Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
  • 2000-2003: Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Pennsylvania
  • 2003-2007: Head of a SFB Junior Research Group, Institute of Clinical and Molecular Virology, Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nürnberg
  • 2007-2010: Professor for Experimental Virology, Hannover Medical School
  • 2010: Professor and Head of the Infection Biology Unit of the German Primate Center

Major Research Interests

The Infection Biology Unit investigates virus host cell interactions with a focus on the first step of the infection process, viral entry into target cells.
Emerging viruses, like the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) coronavirus, can pose a serious threat to public health. Activation by host cell proteases is essential for infectivity of many emerging viruses. We are elucidating which proteolytic systems are hijacked by emerging corona-, filo-, bunya- and influenza viruses for activation. On the basis of this information we will identify inhibitors and evaluate their antiviral activity in cell culture and animal models. Moreover, we are interested in defining which host cell receptors are used by emerging viruses for cellular entry. Finally, we are investigating how interferon-induced antiviral effector molecules inhibit infection by emerging viruses.
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is the causative agent of the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), a major global health crisis, and constitutes the second research focus of the Infection Biology Unit. We seek to understand how the composition of the glycan coat of the HIV envelope protein modulates viral spread in and between individuals. This question will be addressed by employing simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) infection of macaques as model system for HIV infection of humans.

Homepage Department/Research Group


Selected Recent Publications

  • Zmora P, Moldenhauer AS, Hofmann-Winkler H, Pöhlmann S (2015) TMPRSS2 Isoform 1 Activates Respiratory Viruses and Is Expressed in Viral Target Cells. PLoS One 10(9): e0138380
  • Karsten CB, Buettner FF, Cajic S, Nehlmeier I, Neumann B, Klippert A, Sauermann U, Reichl U, Gerardy-Schahn R, Rapp E, Stahl-Hennig C, Pöhlmann S (2015) Exclusive Decoration of Simian Immunodeficiency Virus Env with High-Mannose Type N-Glycans Is Not Compatible with Mucosal Transmission in Rhesus Macaques. J Virol 89(22): 11727-33
  • Gnirß K, Zmora P, Blazejewska P, Winkler M, Lins A, Nehlmeier I, Gärtner S, Moldenhauer AS, Hofmann-Winkler H, Wolff T, Schindler M, Pöhlmann S. Tetherin (2015) Sensitivity of Influenza A Viruses Is Strain Specific: Role of Hemagglutinin and Neuraminidase. J Virol 89(18): 9178-88
  • Wrensch F, Winkler M, Pöhlmann S (2014) IFITM proteins inhibit entry driven by the MERS-coronavirus spike protein: evidence for cholesterol-independent mechanisms. Viruses 6(9): 3683-98
  • Gierer S, Müller MA, Heurich A, Ritz D, Springstein BL, Karsten CB, Schendzielorz A, Gnirß K, Drosten C, Pöhlmann S (2014) Inhibition of proprotein convertases abrogates processing of the middle eastern respiratory syndrome coronavirus spike protein in infected cells but does not reduce viral infectivity.J Infect Dis 211(6): 889-97
  • Kühl A, Münch J, Sauter D, Bertram S, Glowacka I, Steffen I, Specht A, Hofmann H, Schneider H, Behrens G, Pöhlmann S (2010) Calcium-modulating cyclophilin ligand does not restrict retrovirus release. Nat Med 16: 155-6