Cramer, Patrick, Prof. Dr.

Professor, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry

  • Study of chemistry at the Universities of Stuttgart and Heidelberg, Research student at the University of Bristol (UK) and Cambridge (UK)
  • 1995 Diploma in chemistry at the University of Heidelberg
  • 1998 Doctorate at the University of Heidelberg/EMBL Grenoble (France)
  • 1995 -1998 Predoctoral fellow in Grenoble (France)
  • 1999 - 2000 postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University (USA)
  • 2001 - 2003 Tenure-track professor of biochemistry at the University of Munich
  • 2004 - 2014 Professor of biochemistry at the University of Munich
  • 2004 - 2013 Director at the Gene Center of the University of Munich (LMU)
  • Since 2014 Director of the Department for Molecular Biology at the Max Planck Institute of Biophysical Chemistry

Major Research Interests

Gene transcription and genomic regulation

Gene transcription is the first step in the expression of the genetic information and a focal point for cellular regulation. Our goal is to understand the molecular mechanisms of gene transcription and the principles of genomic regulation in eukaryotic cells. We use structural biology, in particular cryo-electron microscopy, and complementary functional studies to unravel the three-dimensional structure of large macromolecular complexes involved in transcription. We also develop functional genomics and sequencing methods and computational approaches to unravel the cellular mechanisms of genomic regulation. These efforts led to molecular movies of transcription and provided insights into gene-regulatory cellular networks. Our aim is to understand the functional genome as a regulatory network based on the underlying structural and molecular mechanisms. In the future we will concentrate on transcription regulation within a chromatin context by combining biochemistry, structural biology, functional genomics, and bioinformatics.

Homepage Department / Research Group

Selected Recent Publications

  • O'Reilly FJ et al (2020) In-cell architecture of an actively transcribing-translating expressome. Science 369(6503): 554-557
  • Hillen HS, Kokic G, Farnung L, Dienemann C, Tegunov D, Cramer P (2020) Structure of replicating SARS-CoV-2 polymerase. Nature 584(7819): 154-156
  • Dodonova SO, Zhu F, Dienemann C, Taipale J, Cramer P (2020) Nucleosome-bound SOX2 and SOX11 structures elucidate pioneer factor function. Nature 580(7805): 669-672
  • Wagner FR, Dienemann C, Wang H, Stützer A, Tegunov D, Urlaub H, Cramer P (2020) Structure of SWI/SNF chromatin remodeller RSC bound to a nucleosome. Nature 579(7799): 448-451
  • Cramer P (2019) Organization and regulation of gene transcription. Nature 573(7772): 45-54
  • Farnung L, Vos SM, Wigge C, Cramer P (2017) Nucleosome–Chd1 structure and implications for chromatin remodeling. Nature 550, 539-542
  • Gressel S, Schwalb B, Decker TM, Qin W, Leonhardt H, Eick D, Cramer P (2017) CDK9-dependent RNA polymerase II pausing controls transcription initiation. eLife
  • Schwalb B, Michel M, Zacher B, Frühauf K, Demel C, Tresch A, Gagneur J, Cramer P (2016) TT-seq maps the human transient genome. Science. 2016 Jun 3; 352(6290):1225-8