Protein architecture and function

X-ray crystallography yields highly precise information on the three-dimensional structure of biological macromolecules


Applying an integrative structural biology approach centered on X-ray crystallography, we are investigating structure and function of biological macromolecules and their relevance for physiology and pathology of a variety of organisms. A major subject of our research is the protein machinery involved in macroautophagy and other vesicular sequestration and transport processes in eukaryotic cells. In many of these pathways proteins of the Atg8 family play an important role; being coupled to membrane lipids and at the same time providing binding sites for other proteins, they modify both geometry and functionality of biological membranes. We are interested in physiological interactions of autophagy-related proteins as well as their modulation via artificial binding partners. Furthermore, we are investigating mechanisms of protein misfolding and aggregation implicated in psychiatric diseases, and their consequences for cellular signal transduction. Our focus is currently on the scaffold protein DISC1, which is associated with cases of schizophrenia and other mental disorders. Finally, we support the characterisation of bioeconomically interesting proteins and their rational optimisation as, e.g., biological catalysts, by determining their three-dimensional structures.

Research Topics

  • Autophagy-associated proteins
  • misfolding diseases
  • protein-protein interactions
  • biocatalysts


Prof. Dr. Oliver H. Weiergräber


Building 05.8v / Room 2029

+49 2461/61-2028


M.Sc. Srushti Gujar

M.Sc. Assalla AbuShamseye

Selected Publications

Last Modified: 28.11.2022