Experimental Virology

Viruses are tiny vehicles that transport biological information to reprogram the functions of human, animal, or plant cells in order to replicate. So-called "enveloped" viruses consist of only one layer of proteins, are filled with genetic material, and are surrounded by a thin shell of lipids in which viral proteins are embedded. Even though viruses are tiny and have a simple build, viral pathogens such as the hepatitis C virus (HCV), respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and SARS-CoV-2 have the potential to threaten the health of millions of people.
Here at the Institute for Experimental Virology, we focus on fundamental and translational RNA virus research. Our research groups combine the expertise of molecular and cell biological approaches with computational methods to help elucidate viral replication mechanisms to develop new therapeutic and preventive strategies. The Working group is based at the TWINCORE in Hannover.


Prof Dr Thomas Pietschmann

At EVIR, we focus on bridging the gap between fundamental research and clinical practice. We study the molecular mechanisms of viral diseases, such as RSV and HCV, always keeping clinical questions in mind, ensuring a seamless approach from bench to bedside and back again.

Thomas Pietschmann

Thomas Pietschmann, born in Würzburg, studied biology at the Justus Maximilian University of Würzburg and Duke University, Durham USA. In 2000, he received his doctorate at the Institute of Virology at the University of Würzburg on mechanisms of virus morphogenesis in retroviruses and joined Professor Ralf Bartenschlager's group at the Institute of Virology in Mainz as a postdoc. In 2002 he moved to the Department of Molecular Virology at Heidelberg University together with Bartenschlager.  In 2006 Thomas Pietschmann founded an Emmy Noether junior research group that focused on the morphogenesis and entry mechanism of the hepatitis C virus. In spring 2007 he and his working group were appointed to TWINCORE. Since 2012 he is head of the Department of Experimental Virology at TWINCORE and has been spokesman for the Helmholtz program “Infection Research” since 2021. In 2023 he joined the HZI management team as scientific co-director and was elected to the executive board of the German Center for Infection Research (DZIF). 

Further Information

A current overview of the team and further information about the research group can be found on the TWINCORE page.

Bachelor & Master
Are you interested in a bachelor or master thesis? We are looking forward to your request!

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