Prof. Dr. Friedrich Frischknecht

Prof. Dr. Friedrich Frischknecht

Department of Infectious Diseases, Parasitology
Heidelberg University Hospital
69120 Heidelberg, Germany

Phone: +49 6221-56 6537


Cell biology and biophysics of pathogen infection, malaria cell biology, live cell imaging, cell motility


2011                       ERC Starting Grant
2010                       Group Leader Fellowship, Chica and Heinz Schaller Foundation
2007                       Hengstberger Prize of Heidelberg University (with Maik Lehmann)
2004                       BioFuture Prize of the German Ministry for Education and Science
2001 / 2002          Long-term postdoctoral fellowship awards from EMBO and HFSP
2001                       Amersham Pharmacia Science Prize for Europe

2014-present Professor for Integrative Parasitology, Heidelberg University
2005-2014 Group Leader, Department of Parasitology, Heidelberg University
2001-2005 Postdoc, Department of Parasitology, Insitut Pasteur, Paris, France
2000 PhD (FU Berlin) summa cum laude
1996-2000 PhD thesis (EMBL, Heidelberg)
1995-1996 Research Student (Lab. of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK)
1990-1996 Biochemistry (FU Berlin)
2020-2023 Co-director “Biology of Parasitism” course, Woods Hole, USA
2020-present Steering Committee member of SPP 2225 “Exit strategies of intracellular pathogens”
2014-present Vice-chair and Steering Committee member of SFB 1129 “Integrative analysis of pathogen replication and spread”
2015 Co-organization of the symposium “Collective cell migration”
2010-2013 Co-organization of three EMBO courses on imaging and infection
2008 Co-organization of the symposium “Imaging host-pathogen and infection”
2005-2011 Elected member of EMBL Alumni organization
2000 Co-organization of first EMBL PhD student symposium
1999 Representative of PhD students at EMBL

(*designates multiple corresponding authors)

Klug D*, Goellner S, Kehrer J, Sattler JM, Strauss L, Singer M, Lu C, Springer TA* and Frischknecht F*, Evolutionarily distant I domains can functionally replace the essential ligand-binding domain of Plasmodium TRAP, eLife, 9 e57572, 2020.

Spreng B, Fleckenstein H, Kübler P, di Biagio C, Benz M, Patra P, Schwarz US, Cyrklaff M, Frischknecht F. 2019. Microtubule number and length determine cellular shape and function of Plasmodium. EMBO J. 38:e100984

Klug D*, Frischknecht F*. 2017. Motility precedes egress of malaria parasites from oocysts. eLife. 6:e19157

Quadt K, Streichfuss M, Moreau C, Spatz, JP, Frischknecht F. 2016. Coupling of retrograde flow to force production during malaria parasite migration. ACS Nano. 10:2091-2102

Singer M*, Marshall J, Heiss K, Mair GR, Grimm D, Mueller AK, Frischknecht F*. 2015. Zinc-finger nuclease-based double strand breaks attenuate malaria parasites and reveal rare micro-homology mediated end joining. Genome Biol. 16:249

Hellmann JK, Münter S, Kudryashev M, Schulz S, Heiss K, Müller AK, Matuschewski K, Spatz JP, Schwarz US, Frischknecht F. 2011. Environmental constraints guide migration of malaria parasites during transmission. PLoS Pathog. 7:e1002080

Münter S, Sabass B, Selhuber-Unkel C, Kudryashev M, Hegge S, Spatz JP, Engel U, Matuschewski K, Schwarz US*, Frischknecht F*. 2009. Plasmodium sporozoite motility is modulated by the turnover of discrete adhesion sites. Cell Host Microbe. 6:551-562

Cyrklaff M*, Kudryashev M, Leis A, Leonard K, Baumeister W, Ménard R, Meissner M, Frischknecht F*. 2007. Cryoelectron tomography reveals periodic luminal material in subpellicular microtubules from apicomplexan parasites. J. Exp. Med. 204:1281-1287

Amino R*, Thiberge S, Martin B, Celli S, Shorte SL, Frischknecht F* , Ménard R*. 2006. Quantitative imaging of malaria parasite transmission to the mammalian host. Nat. Med. 12:220-224

Frischknecht F, Moreau V, Röttger S, Gonfloni S, Reckmann I, Superti-Furga G, Way M. 1999. Actin-based motility of vaccinia virus mimics receptor tyrosin kinase signaling. Nature. 401:926-9

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