Research Area C: Bacterial Communities and Host

Central question:

Which general principles are used by bacterial microbiome members and host cells to communicate and interfere with each other?


Antimicrobial host factors are critical for shaping the composition of the microbiome and individual differences in the expression of such factors contribute to microbiome dysfunction and diseases. Scientists in Research Area C will join forces to identify in human microbiomes host-produced bioactive molecules and metal-ions scavengers that restrict the growth of microorganisms.


They will then elucidate the effects of these compounds on bacterial fitness in host-specific habitats and on the dynamics of microbial communities in in vitro and in vivo microbiome model systems.  The impact of specific Microbial-Associated Molecular Patterns (MAMPs) and MAMP variants on the production of antimicrobial molecules and inflammatory mediators will be further investigated in gnotobiotic transgenic mice. The long term goal of Research Area C is to unravel principles of communication between microbiomes and hosts on a systemic level.

Principal Investigators

Prof. Dr. Julia-Stefanie Frick

University Hospital Tübingen
Interfaculty Institute of Microbiology and Infection Medicine
Mucosale Immunity und Microbiome

Prof. Dr. Hans-Georg Rammensee

University of Tübingen
Institute of Cell Biology

Prof. Dr. Ruth Ley

Max-Planck-Institute for Developmental Biology
Microbiome Science


Prof. Dr. Detlef Weigel

Max-Planck-Institute for Developmental Biology
Molecular Biology