Heinz Neumann

Heinz Neumann

Research Group Leader, Structural Biochemistry

Applied Synthetic Biology

Research Interests

My group investigates the molecular mechanisms controlling chromatin dynamics in vivo. To explore these mechanisms, we use genetically encoded unnatural amino acids, which possess unique chemical or biophysical properties. With UV-activatable crosslinker amino acids in living yeast, we were able to identify an internucleosomal interaction that drives chromosome condensation in mitosis and the cascade of histone modifications governing it. We are currently expanding this analysis proteome-wide to monitor cell cycle dependent changes in protein-nucleosome interactions. Thereby we want to understand the mechanisms underlying mitotic chromosome condensation.


We always welcome applications from qualified and highly motivated individuals (MSc and postdoc level). Please contact us via email to discuss details. Applicants for PhD positions will have to apply through the IMPRS-CMB program, but we are happy to discuss opportunities and projects any time.

Selected Publications

Spinck M, Neumann-Staubitz P, Ecke M, Gasper R, Neumann H (2020). Evolved, Selective Erasers of Distinct Lysine Acylations. Angew Chem Int Ed Engl

Kruitwagen T, Denoth-Lippuner A, Wilkins BJ, Neumann H and Barral Y (2015). Axial contraction and short-range compaction of chromatin synergistically promote mitotic chromosome condensation. eLife 4, e1039

Hoffmann C and Neumann H (2015). In vivo mapping of FACT-Histone interactions identifies a role of Pob3 C-terminus in H2A-H2B binding. ACS Chem Biol 10, 2753-63.
doi: 10.1021/acschembio

Halder K, Doelke N, Van Q, Gregor I, Dickmanns A, Baade I, Kehlenbach RH, Ficner R, Enderlein J, Grubmueller H, Neumann H (2015). MD Simulations and FRET Reveal an Environment-Sensitive Conformational Plasticity of Importin-β. Biophys J 109, 277-86.
doi: 10.1016/j.bpj.2015.06.014.

Wilkins BJ, Hahn LE, Heitmuller S, Frauendorf H, Valerius O, Brau, GH, and Neumann H (2015). Genetically Encoding Lysine Modifications on Histone H4. ACS Chem Biol 10, 939-44.
doi: 10.1016/j.bpj.2015.06.014.

Lammers C, Hahn LE, and Neumann H (2014). Optimized Plasmid Systems for the Incorporation of Multiple Different Unnatural Amino Acids by Evolved Orthogonal Ribosomes. Chembiochem 15, 1800-1804.
doi: 10.1002/cbic.201402033.

Wilkins BJ, Rall NA, Ostwal Y, Kruitwagen T, Hiragami-Hamada K, Winkler M, Barral Y, Fischle W, and Neumann H (2014). A cascade of histone modifications induces chromatin condensation in mitosis. Science 343, 77-80.
doi: 10.1126/science.

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