Microbial Proteomics

A genome contains all the information that is needed to build an organism like, for instance, a bacterium. One of functional genomics’ central questions is: How are these blueprints implemented so that relatively simple molecular codes ultimately give rise to a microorganism with the potential of getting us sick? What are some of the underlying mechanisms and under what conditions do they become activated?

Our Research

The primary research focus of scientists working in the Microbial Proteomics Research Group is on the human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus. This bacterium colonises the skin and anterior nares  of just about one third of the population – quite naturally and without ever causing any symptoms.

Despite the fact that S. aureus infections are relatively rare, today, multi-resistant strains of staphylococci are counted among the World’s most feared hospital germs that are responsible for roughly one third of all hospital infections. Multi-resistant strains of staphylococci no longer respond to treatment with conventional antibiotics and thus frequently lead to death of a patient. This is why it is important that new treatment strategies for this pathogen be developed that can readily be implemented in the clinical setting. To this end, an in-depth knowledge of this pathogen’s pathophysiology and virulence is urgently warranted – which is the reason why our scientists are specifically looking at identifying the link between the pathogen’s physiology and its knack for colonizing its host and causing disease. 


  • Prof Dr Susanne Engelmann

    Susanne Engelmann

    Group Leader

    +49 531 6181-3041

    +49 531 6181-7099