Institute of Molecular Immunology

We are currently accepting applications for PhD candidates and Postdoctoral Fellows. Please send your application to Sandra Kimmerle (

Welcome to the Institute of Molecular Immunology at the Technische Universität München! We are a basic research institution based at the main campus of the Medical Faculty within the Klinikum rechts der Isar and at the science campus of Weihenstephan. The enormous plasticity of immune responses that ascertain health and tissue homeostasis but also defend us against infectious micro-organisms is not only generated by fixed programs within lymphoid cells but is determined to a large part by the non-immune tissues where immune responses take place. The focus of the Institute is on the clinically relevant questions how immune responses are controlled by local regulatory cues within peripheral organs and its consequences for tissue inflammation, persistence of pathogen infection, development of organ damage and cancer development. The research groups within the Institute of Molecular Immunology join forces to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms that determine such local regulation of immune responses in non-lymphoid organ and to develop novel immune intervention strategies for diseases associated with chronic inflammation in particular therapeutic vaccination. We maintain a strong scientific link to the Institutes of Molecular Medicine and Experimental Immunology at the Universität Bonn.


Research Groups working within the Institute of Molecular Immunology are funded, amongst others, by the German Research Foundation (DFG) to individuals or within the collaborative research centers SFB 704, SFB TR57, Excellence Cluster ImmunoSensation; by the EU FP7 Initiative IMI-JU for MIP-DILI, the BMBF-funded projects Virtual Liver and PeTrA.

Key Publications of the Institute of Molecular Immunology of the last 5 years

  1. Huang LR, Wohlleber D, Reisinger F, Jenne CN, Cheng RL, Abdullah Z, Schildberg FA, Odenthal M, Dienes HP, van Rooijen N, Schmitt E, Garbi N, Croft M, Kurts C, Kubes P, Protzer U, Heikenwalder M, Knolle PA. Intrahepatic myeloid-cell aggregates enable local proliferation of CD8(+) T cells and successful immunotherapy against chronic viral liver infection.Nat Immunol2013,14(6):574-583.

  2. Bottcher JP, Schanz O, Wohlleber D, Abdullah Z, Debey-Pascher S, Staratschek-Jox A, Hochst B, Hegenbarth S, Grell J, Limmer A, Atreya I, Neurath MF, Busch DH, Schmitt E, van Endert P, Kolanus W, Kurts C, Schultze JL, Diehl L, Knolle PA. Liver-Primed Memory T Cells Generated under Noninflammatory Conditions Provide Anti-infectious Immunity.Cell reports2013,3(3):779-795.

  3. Wohlleber D, Kashkar H, Gartner K, Frings MK, Odenthal M, Hegenbarth S, Borner C, Arnold B, Hammerling G, Nieswandt B, van Rooijen N, Limmer A, Cederbrant K, Heikenwalder M, Pasparakis M, Protzer U, Dienes HP, Kurts C, Kronke M, Knolle PA. TNF-Induced Target Cell Killing by CTL Activated through Cross-Presentation.Cell reports2012,2(3):478-487.

  4. Protzer U, Maini MK, Knolle PA. Living in the liver: hepatic infections.Nat Rev Immunol2012,12(3):201-213.

  5. Abdullah Z, Schlee M, Roth S, Mraheil MA, Barchet W, Bottcher J, Hain T, Geiger S, Hayakawa Y, Fritz JH, Civril F, Hopfner KP, Kurts C, Ruland J, Hartmann G, Chakraborty T, Knolle PA. RIG-I detects infection with live Listeria by sensing secreted bacterial nucleic acids.The EMBO journal2012,31(21):4153-4164.

  6. Thomson AW, Knolle PA. Antigen-presenting cell function in the tolerogenic liver environment.Nat Rev Immunol2010,10(11):753-766.

  7. Kurts C, Robinson BW, Knolle PA. Cross-priming in health and disease.Nat Rev Immunol2010,10(6):403-414.