Prof. Dr. Hemmo Meyer

Current Position: Full Professor (W3), University of Duisburg-Essen
Group Leader: Junior Group Leader at ETH Zurich
Postdoc: Imperial Cancer Research Fund, London, and Yale University
PhD: Human Biology in Marburg, Germany

Research Interest
Cells need to cope with a multitude of stress conditions that relentlessly inflict damage to its most vital components. This includes insults to the DNA that threatens genome stability, damage of proteins that can then form toxic aggregates, or injury of whole organelles such as mitochondria and lysosomes that releases harmful components. Cells have developed sophisticated molecular responses to these stresses that maintain protein homeostasis and organelle function, and ensure genomic stability. We are interested in deciphering these responses and uncover how they counteract stress-induced cell death and aging-related degeneration, or maintain cell proliferation.

We have been working to understand how the ubiquitin-proteasome system governs these cellular stress responses with a recent focus on the role of autophagy and underlying mechanisms. The projects have relevance for understanding myodegenerative and neurodegenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia, as well as for novel approaches to cancer therapy.  Our approaches are fluorescence microscopy of tissue culture models, gene silencing and editing, imaging-based small-scale screening, biochemical and proteomic analysis. 

-functional genomics in human tissue culture cells using RNAi
-live cell microscopy
-advanced microscopy
-protein biochemistry
-biochemical reconstitution in Xenopus egg extracts.

Selected Reading
Papadopoulos C, Kirchner P, Bug M, Grum D, Koerver L, Schulze N, Poehler R, Dressler A, Fengler S, Arhzaouy K, Lux V, Ehrmann M, Weihl CC, Meyer H. VCP/p97 cooperates with YOD1, UBXD1 and PLAA to drive clearance of ruptured lysosomes by autophagy. EMBO J, 2017, 36:135-150.

van den Boom J, Wolf M, Weimann L, Schulze N, Li F, Kaschani F, Riemer A, Zierhut C, Kaiser M, Iliakis G, Funabiki H, Meyer H. VCP/p97 extracts sterically trapped Ku70/80 rings from DNA in double strand break repair. Mol. Cell, 2016, 64: 189–198.

Meyer HH, Bug M, Bremer S. Emerging functions of the VCP/p97 AAA-ATPase in the ubiquitin system. Nat Cell Biol 2012, 14(2), 117-23. Review.

Ritz D, Vuk M, Kirchner P, Bug M, Schütz S, Hayer A, Bremer S, Lusk C, Baloh RH, Lee H, Glatter T, Gstaiger M, Aebersold R, Weihl CC, Meyer H. Endolysosomal sorting of ubiquitinated caveolin-1 is regulated by VCP/p97 and UBXD1 and impaired by VCP disease mutations. Nat. Cell Biol 2011, 13(9), 1116-23.

Ramadan K, Bruderer R, Spiga F, Popp O, Baur T, Gotta M, and Meyer HH. Cdc48/p97 promotes reformation of the nucleus by extracting Aurora B kinase from chromatin. Nature 2007, 450, 1258-62.

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