Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Chair of Metabolic Biochemistry

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Curriculum vitae of Christian Haass

Academic Education Postdoctoral Training Advanced Professional Degrees Awards and Honours Speaker of national and international research projects Speaker of national and international research projects Professional Memberships Peer reviewer Editorial boards Organization of International conferences Private activities Selected Publications Selectected Review Articles

Academic Education

1981-1985 studying Biology at the Rupprechts-Karls-University, Heidelberg, Germany
Nov. 1989 Ph.D. (summa cum laude) "cDNA cloning of proteasome subunits


Postdoctoral Training

1990-1992 Postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Prof. Dr. D.J. Selkoe at the Center for Neurologic Diseases / Harvard Medical School, Boston/USA


Advanced Professional Degrees

1993-1995 Assistant Professor of Neurology at the Harvard Medical School
1995 Professor (C3) of Molecular Biology at the Central Institute of Mental Health, Mannheim (University of Heidelberg)
since 1999 Professor of Biochemistry (C4) and head of the Department of Metabolic Biochemistry at the Adolf-Butenandt Institute (Ludwig- Maximilians-University, Munich)
since 2009 Speaker of the German Center for Neurodegenerative Disorders (DZNE) in Munich


Selected awards

1990 Award of the Heidelberg Society for Molecular Biology for the best Ph.D. thesis
1996 Organon Research Award
1997 Award of the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences
2000 International Alois Alzheimer Award
2002 Family Hansen Award
2002 Ernst Jung Award for Medicine
2002 Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz-Award of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
2002 Potamkin Award of the American Academy of Neurology
2006 MetLife Foundation Award for Medical Research
2006 "Sheik Hamdan Award for Medical Sciences"(in the category Biology of Aging)
2006 Dittner Award for Alzheimer Research
2010 Honorary Degree of the University of Zurich
2012 ERC advanced grant


Speaker of national and international research projects

  • Speaker of the DFG-Forschungsschwerpunkt (National Priority Program) “Cellular Mechanisms of Alzheimer's Disease”
  • Speaker of the Sonderforschungsbereich 596 (Collaborative Research Center) “Molecular Mechanisms of Neurodegeneration”
  • Work package leader of DIADEM (EU grant)
  • Work package leader of APOPIS (EU grant)
  • Member and sub-project speaker of the DFG Excellence Cluster "Center for Integrated Protein Science Munich" (CiPSM)
  • Speaker of the DFG Excellence Cluster "Systems Neurology" (SyNergy)


Professional Memberships

  • Member of the Society for Neuroscience
  • Member of the Academia Europaea
  • Elected member of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO)
  • Member of the Senate of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)
  • Member of the board of the Alzheimer International Foundation
  • Member of the board of Hans und Ilse Breuer Foundation
  • Member of the Leopoldina


Peer reviewer

  • Biochemistry
  • Cell
  • EMBO J.
  • EMBO Reports
  • FEBS-Letters
  • J. Biol. Chem.
  • J. Cell Biol.
  • J. Neurochemistry
  • J. Neuroscience
  • Mol. Cell
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Nature
  • Nature Cell Biology
  • Nature Genetics
  • Nature Medicine
  • Nature Neuroscience
  • Nature Review Journals
  • Neuron
  • Neurobiology of Disease
  • PLOS- Biology
  • Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA
  • Science
  • Trends in Cell Biology


Membership in Editorial Boards

2005-2005 Member of the Editorial Board of J. Biol. Chem.
2005-2010 Advisory Board Member of EMBO Reports
since 2005 Advisory Board Member of EMBO J.
since 2005 Member of the Board of Reviewers of Science
since 2008 Advisory Board Member of EMBO Mol.Medicine
since 2012 Advisory Board Member of J.Neuroscience


Organization of International conferences

  • Annual Eibsee Conference of the DFG Priority Program and the SFB 596 "Cellular Mechanisms of Alzheimer's Disease" (since 2000)
  • Titisee Conference of the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation on "Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease: from basic science to therapeutic treatment"(19. - 23. 3. 2003)
  • SFB- Symposium on "Molecular Mechanisms of Neurodegeneration" (Wildbad Kreuth; 20. - 23. 7. 2003)
  • SFB- Symposium on "Regulated Intramembrane Proteolysis" (Schloss Ringberg; 27. - 30. 11. 2006)
  • SFB- Symposium on "Neurodegeneration in Zebrafish" (Schloss Ringberg 21. - 24. 2. 2010)
  • SFB- Symposium on "Mitochondria in Neurodegeneration" (Schloss Ringberg 6. - 9. 10. 2010)


Private activitiesembo_journal_vogel

  • Field Ornithology since more than 45 years.
    Participation on International Monitoring Programs
    (e.g. International Water Bird Counting).
    Publications for example in Otus, a Journal for field
    ornithology in Bavaria (
    Bird Photography
  • Collecting Modern Art (Abstract Expressionism and German Informel)

 Cover of EMBO J. November 15, 2012
 (Black-Browed Albatross and Silver Gull)

Embo Journal Cover

Cover of EMBO J. October 16, 2014
(Fairy Prion, photographed during an off-shore birding trip south of Tasmania)


Selected Publications

  • Kleinberger G., Yamanishi Y., Suárez-Calvet M., Czirr E., Lohmann E., Cuyvers E., Struyfs H., Pettkus N., Wenninger-Weinzierl A., Mazaheri F., Tahirovic S., Lleó A., Alcolea D., Fortea J., Willem M., Lammich S., Molinuevo J. L., Sanchez-Valle R., Antonell A., Ramirez A., Heneka M., Sleegers K., van der Zee J., Martin J.-J., Engelborghs S., Demirtas-Tatlidede A., Zetterberg H., Van Broeckhoven C., Gurvit H., Wyss-Coray T., Hardy J., Colonna M. & Haass C. (2014) TREM2 mutations linked to neurodegeneration impair cell surface transport and phagocytosis. Science Translational Medicine, 6, 1-29.
  • Fleck D, van Bebber F, Colombo A, Galante C, Schwenk BM, Rabe L, Hampel H, Novak B, Kremmer E, Tahirovic S, Edbauer D, Lichtenthaler SF, Schmid B, Willem M, Haass C. (2013). Dual cleavage of Neuregulin I type III by BACE1 and ADAM17 liberates its EGF-like domain and allows paracrine signaling. J Neurosci., 33, 7856-69
  • Schmid B, Hruscha A, Hogl S, Banzhaf-Strathmann J, Strecker K, van der Zee J, Teucke M, Eimer S, Hegermann J, Kittelmann M, Kremmer E, Cruts M, Solchenberger B, Hasenkamp L, van Bebber F, Van Broeckhoven C, Edbauer D, Lichtenthaler SF, Haass C. (2013). Loss of ALS-associated TDP-43 in zebrafish causes muscle degeneration, vascular dysfunction, and reduced motor neuron axon outgrowth. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A., 110, 4986-91
  • Mori K, Weng SM, Arzberger T, May S, Rentzsch K, Kremmer E, Schmid B, Kretzschmar HA, Cruts M, Van Broeckhoven C, Haass C, Edbauer D. (2013) The C9orf72 GGGGCC repeat is translated into aggregating dipeptide-repeat proteins in FTLD/ALS. Science. 15, 1335-8.
  • Dormann, D., Madl, T., Valori, C.V., Bentmann, E., Tahirovic, S., Abou-Ajram, C., Kremmer, K., Ansorge, O., Mackenzie, I.R.A., Neumann, M., Haass, C. (2012). Arginine methylation next to the PY-NLS modulates Transportin binding and nuclear import of FUS. EMBO J., 31, 4258-4275.
  • Capell, A., Liebscher, S., Fellerer, K., Brouwers, N., Willem, M., Lammich, S., Gijselinck, I., Bittner, T., Carlson, A.M., Sasse, F., Kunze, B., Steinmetz, H., Jansen, R., Dormann, D., Sleegers, K., Cruts, M., Herms, J., Van Broeckhoven, C., Haass, C. (2011). Rescue of Progranulin Deficiency Associated with Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration by Alkalizing Reagents and Inhibition of Vacuolar ATPase. J. Neurosci., 31, 1885 - 1894.
  • Kamp, F., Exner N., Lutz A.K., Wender N., Hegermann J., Brunner, B., Nuscher, B., Bartels, T., Giese, A. Beyer, K., Eimer, S., Winklhofer, K.F., Haass, C. (2010). Inhibition of mitochondrial fusion by -synuclein is rescued by PINK1, Parkin and DJ-1. EMBO J., 29, 3571 - 3589.
  • Dormann, D, Rodde, R, Edbauer, D, Bentmann, E, Fischer, I, Hruscha, A, Than ME, Mackenzie I RA, Capell A, Schmid S, Neumann M, Haass, C. (2010). ALS-associated fused in sarcoma (FUS) mutations disrupt Transportin mediated nuclear import. EMBO J.,29, 2841-2857.
  • Fukumori, A., Fluhrer, R., Steiner, H., and Haass, C. (2010). Three-amino acid spacing of presenilin endoproteolysis suggests a general stepwise cleavage of -secretase-mediated intramembrane proteolysis. J. Neuroscience 30, 7853-7862.
  • Paquet D, Bhat R, Sydow A, Mandelkow EM, Berg S, Hellberg S, Fälting J, Distel M, Köster RW, Schmid B, Haass C. (2009) Gal4-UAS based transgenic expression of amyloidogenic proteins allows early detection of disease specific neuropathology in zebrafish. J. Clinical Investigation, 119, 1382 - 1395.
  • Exner, N., Treske, B., Paquet, D., Holmstrom, K., Schiesling, C., Gispert, S., Carballo-Carbajal, I., Berg, D., Hoepken, H. H., Gasser, T., Krüger R., Winklhofer K.F., Vogel, F., Reichert, A.S., Auburger, G., Kahle, P.J., Schmid, B., and Haass, C. (2007). Loss-of-function of human PINK1 results in mitochondrial pathology and can be rescued by parkin. J Neurosci 27, 12413-12418.
  • Kaether, C., Scheuermann, J., Fassler, M., Zilow, S., Shirotani, K., Valkova, C., Novak, B., Kacmar, S., Steiner, H. and Haass, C. (2007) Endoplasmic reticulum retention of the gamma-secretase complex component Pen2 by Rer1. EMBO Rep 8, 743-8.
  • Willem, M., Garratt, A.N., Novak, B., Citron, M., Kaufmann, S., Rittger, A., DeStrooper, B., Saftig, P., Birchmeier, C. and Haass, C. (2006) Control of peripheral nerve myelination by the beta-secretase BACE1. Science 314, 664-6.
  • Fluhrer, R., Grammer, G., Israel, L., Condron, M.M., Haffner, C., Friedmann, E., Bohland, C., Imhof, A., Martoglio, B., Teplow, D.B. and Haass, C. (2006) A gamma-secretase-like intramembrane cleavage of TNFalpha by the GxGD aspartyl protease SPPL2b. Nat Cell Biol 8, 894-6.
  • Kaether, C., Capell, A., Edbauer, D., Winkler, E., Novak, B., Steiner, H. and Haass, C. (2004) The presenilin C-terminus is required for ER-retention, nicastrin-binding and gamma-secretase activity. EMBO J 23, 4738-48.
  • Haffner, C., Frauli, M., Topp, S., Irmler, M., Hofmann, K., Regula, J.T., Bally-Cuif, L. and Haass, C. (2004) Nicalin and its binding partner Nomo are novel Nodal signaling antagonists. EMBO J 23, 3041-50.
  • Lammich, S., Schobel, S., Zimmer, A.K., Lichtenthaler, S.F. and Haass, C. (2004) Expression of the Alzheimer protease BACE1 is suppressed via its 5'-untranslated region. EMBO Rep 5, 620-5.
  • Edbauer, D., Winkler, E., Regula, J.T., Pesold, B., Steiner, H. and Haass, C. (2003) Reconstitution of gamma-secretase activity. Nat Cell Biol 5, 486-8.
  • Okochi, M., Steiner, H., Fukumori, A., Tanii, H., Tomita, T., Tanaka, T., Iwatsubo, T., Kudo, T., Takeda, M. and Haass, C. (2002) Presenilins mediate a dual intramembranous gamma-secretase cleavage of Notch-1. EMBO J 21, 5408-16.
  • Kaether, C., Lammich, S., Edbauer, D., Ertl, M., Rietdorf, J., Capell, A., Steiner, H. and Haass, C. (2002) Presenilin-1 affects trafficking and processing of betaAPP and is targeted in a complex with nicastrin to the plasma membrane. J Cell Biol 158, 551-61.
  • Geling, A., Steiner, H., Willem, M., Bally-Cuif, L. and Haass, C. (2002) A gamma-secretase inhibitor blocks Notch signaling in vivo and causes a severe neurogenic phenotype in zebrafish. EMBO Rep 3, 688-94.
  • Kahle, P.J., Neumann, M., Ozmen, L., Muller, V., Jacobsen, H., Spooren, W., Fuss, B., Mallon, B., Macklin, W.B., Fujiwara, H., Hasegawa, M., Iwatsubo, T., Kretzschmar, H.A. and Haass, C. (2002) Hyperphosphorylation and insolubility of alpha-synuclein in transgenic mouse oligodendrocytes. EMBO Rep 3, 583-8.
  • Sastre, M., Steiner, H., Fuchs, K., Capell, A., Multhaup, G., Condron, M.M., Teplow, D.B. and Haass, C. (2001) Presenilin-dependent gamma-secretase processing of beta-amyloid precursor protein at a site corresponding to the S3 cleavage of Notch. EMBO Rep 2, 835-41.
  • Steiner, H., Kostka, M., Romig, H., Basset, G., Pesold, B., Hardy, J., Capell, A., Meyn, L., Grim, M.L., Baumeister, R., Fechteler, K. and Haass, C. (2000) Glycine 384 is required for presenilin-1 function and is conserved in bacterial polytopic aspartyl proteases. Nat Cell Biol 2, 848-51.
  • Kahle, P.J., Leimer, U. and Haass, C. (2000) Does failure of parkin-mediated ubiquitination cause juvenile parkinsonism? Trends Biochem Sci 25, 524-7.
  • Capell, A., Steiner, H., Romig, H., Keck, S., Baader, M., Grim, M.G., Baumeister, R. and Haass, C. (2000) Presenilin-1 differentially facilitates endoproteolysis of the beta-amyloid precursor protein and Notch. Nat Cell Biol 2, 205-11.
  • Walter, J., Schindzielorz, A., Grunberg, J. and Haass, C. (1999) Phosphorylation of presenilin-2 regulates its cleavage by caspases and retards progression of apoptosis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 96, 1391-6.
  • Walter, J., Grunberg, J., Capell, A., Pesold, B., Schindzielorz, A., Citron, M., Mendla, K., George-Hyslop, P.S., Multhaup, G., Selkoe, D.J. and Haass, C. (1997) Proteolytic processing of the Alzheimer disease-associated presenilin-1 generates an in vivo substrate for protein kinase C. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 94, 5349-54.
  • Haass, C., Lemere, C.A., Capell, A., Citron, M., Seubert, P., Schenk, D., Lannfelt, L. and Selkoe, D.J. (1995) The Swedish mutation causes early-onset Alzheimer's disease by beta-secretase cleavage within the secretory pathway. Nat Med 1, 1291-6.
  • Haass, C., Koo, E.H., Capell, A., Teplow, D.B. and Selkoe, D.J. (1995) Polarized sorting of beta-amyloid precursor protein and its proteolytic products in MDCK cells is regulated by two independent signals. J Cell Biol 128, 537-47.
  • Haass, C., Koo, E.H., Teplow, D.B. and Selkoe, D.J. (1994) Polarized secretion of beta-amyloid precursor protein and amyloid beta-peptide in MDCK cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 91, 1564-8.
  • Haass, C., Schlossmacher, M.G., Hung, A.Y., Vigo-Pelfrey, C., Mellon, A., Ostaszewski, B.L., Lieberburg, I., Koo, E.H., Schenk, D., Teplow, D.B. and et, a.l. (1992) Amyloid beta-peptide is produced by cultured cells during normal metabolism. Nature 359, 322-5.
  • Haass, C., Koo, E.H., Mellon, A., Hung, A.Y. and Selkoe, D.J. (1992) Targeting of cell-surface beta-amyloid precursor protein to lysosomes: alternative processing into amyloid-bearing fragments. Nature 357, 500-3.
  • Haass, C., Hung, A.Y. and Selkoe, D.J. (1991) Processing of beta-amyloid precursor protein in microglia and astrocytes favors an internal localization over constitutive secretion. J Neurosci 11, 3783-93.
  • Haass, C., Pesold-Hurt, B., Multhaup, G., Beyreuther, K. and Kloetzel, P.M. (1989) The PROS-35 gene encodes the 35 kd protein subunit of Drosophila melanogaster proteasome. EMBO J 8, 2373-9.
  • Falkenburg, P.E., Haass, C., Kloetzel, P.M., Niedel, B., Kopp, F., Kuehn, L. and Dahlmann, B. (1988) Drosophila small cytoplasmic 19S ribonucleoprotein is homologous to the rat multicatalytic proteinase. Nature 331, 190-2.


Selected Review Articles

  • Dormann, D. & Haass, C. (2011). TDP-43 and FUS - a nuclear affair. Trends in Neuroscience, 7, 339-348.
  • St George-Hyslop, P., and Haass, C. (2008). Regulatory RNA goes awry in Alzheimer's disease. Nat. Med. 14, 711-712.
  • Winklhofer, K.F., Tatzelt, J., and Haass, C. (2008). The two faces of protein misfolding: gain- and loss-of-function in neurodegenerative diseases. EMBO J. 27, 336-349.
  • Haass, C. and Selkoe, D.J. (2007) Soluble protein oligomers in neurodegeneration: lessons from the Alzheimer's amyloid beta-peptide. Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol 8, 101-12.
  • Haass, C. (2004) Take five--BACE and the gamma-secretase quartet conduct Alzheimer's amyloid beta-peptide generation. EMBO J 23, 483-8.
  • Kaether, C. and Haass, C. (2004) A lipid boundary separates APP and secretases and limits amyloid beta-peptide generation. J Cell Biol 167, 809-12.
  • Aguzzi, A. and Haass, C. (2003) Games played by rogue proteins in prion disorders and Alzheimer's disease. Science 302, 814-8.
  • Haass, C. and Steiner, H. (2002) Alzheimer disease gamma-secretase: a complex story of GxGD-type presenilin proteases. Trends Cell Biol 12, 556-62.
  • Haass, C. (2002) New hope for Alzheimer disease vaccine. Nat Med 8, 1195-6.
  • Haass, C. and Steiner, H. (2001) Protofibrils, the unifying toxic molecule of neurodegenerative disorders? Nat Neurosci 4, 859-60.
  • Haass, C. and Kahle, P.J. (2001) Neuroscience. Parkin and its substrates. Science 293, 224-5.
  • Kahle, P.J., Leimer, U. and Haass, C. (2000) Does failure of parkin-mediated ubiquitination cause juvenile parkinsonism? Trends Biochem Sci 25, 524-7.
  • Haass, C. and Kahle, P.J. (2000) Parkinson's pathology in a fly. Nature 404, 341, 343.
  • Haass, C. and De Strooper, B. (1999) The presenilins in Alzheimer's disease--proteolysis holds the key. Science 286, 916-9.
  • Haass, C. and Selkoe, D.J. (1998) Alzheimer's disease. A technical KO of amyloid-beta peptide. Nature 391, 339-40.
  • Haass, C. (1997) Presenilins: genes for life and death. Neuron 18, 687-90.
  • Haass, C. (1996) Presenile because of presenilin: the presenilin genes and early onset Alzheimer's disease. Curr Opin Neurol 9, 254-9.
  • Haass, C. and Selkoe, D.J. (1993) Cellular processing of beta-amyloid precursor protein and the genesis of amyloid beta-peptide. Cell 75, 1039-42.

Responsible for content: Prof. Dr. Christian Haass