Cluster of Excellence –
University of Freiburg

Prof. Dr. Thorsten Hugel

Prof. Dr. Thorsten Hugel

Institute of Physical Chemistry
University of Freiburg

+49 761 203 6192

We use single molecule methods to investigate molecular machines and signaling in biological systems. We focus on understanding complex dynamic biological processes in and out of equilibrium. In addition, we probe the interaction between proteins and lipid bilayers. The core methods are single molecule multi-colour FRET and single molecule force spectroscopy.


10 selected publications:

  • Multi-domain structure and correlated dynamics determined by self-consistent FRET networks
    Hellenkamp B, Wortmann P, Kandzia F, Zacharias M, Hugel T (2016).
    Nat Meth., in press.
  • Folding and assembly of the large molecular machine Hsp90 studied in single-molecule experiments.
    Jahn M, Buchner J, Hugel T, Rief M.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2016 Feb 2;113(5):1232-7
  • The charged linker of the molecular chaperone Hsp90 modulates domain contacts and biological function.
    Jahn M, Rehn A, Pelz B, Hellenkamp B, Richter K, Rief M, Buchner J, Hugel T.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Dec 16;111(50):17881-6
  • Four-colour FRET reveals directionality in the Hsp90 multicomponent machinery.
    Ratzke C, Hellenkamp B, Hugel T.
    Nat. Commun. 2014;5:4192.
  • The Hsp90 ensemble: coordinated Hsp90-cochaperone complexes regulate diverse cellular processes.
    Schwenkert S, Hugel T, Cox MB.
    Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2014 Dec;21(12):1017-21.
  • Nanoscale friction mechanisms at solid-liquid interfaces.
    Balzer BN, Gallei M, Hauf MV, Stallhofer M, Wiegleb L, Holleitner A, Rehahn M, Hugel T.
    Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2013 Jun 17;52(25):6541-4
  • Heat shock protein 90's mechanochemical cycle is dominated by thermal fluctuations.
    Ratzke C, Berkemeier F, Hugel T.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Jan 3;109(1):161-6.
  • The dynamics of Hsp90 C-terminal dimerization is an important part of its conformational cycle.
    Ratzke C, Mickler M, Hellenkamp B, Buchner J, Hugel T.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012; 37, 16101.
  • The large conformational changes of Hsp90 are only weakly coupled to ATP hydrolysis.
    Mickler M, Hessling M, Ratzke C, Buchner J, Hugel T.
    Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2009 Mar;16(3):281-6.>7li>
  • Single-molecule optomechanical cycle.
    Hugel T, Holland NB, Cattani A, Moroder L, Seitz M, Gaub HE.
    Science. 2002 May 10;296(5570):1103-6.