Kliniken &… Institute Zentrum für… Abteilung… Forschung Alumni


Former Research Groups

Gholamreza Darai has been a Professor at the Department of Virology until his retirement in 2005.

Research interests:

  • Genome structure and coding strategies of animal viruses
  • genomic properties, transcriptional activity, and gene function of the Molluscum contagiosum virus
  • virus-host interaction and pathogenicity of hantaviruses
  • prion diseases
  • new strategies for vaccination.

Helmut Fickenscher has been an Associate Professor for Clinical Virology at the Department of Virology from 2001 to 2005.

Research interests.

  • Herpesvirus saimiri-based T-cell vectors, Interleukin-26, Varicella-Zoster virus and neuropathic changes in infected sensory neurons, clinical virology

Members of the Research Group Fickenscher in Heidelberg:
Maria Anders (MTLA), Erika Ayllon (MTLA), Dipl. Biol. Oliver Braum, Dr. Mirko Kummer, Dr. Heide Pirzer, Dr. Michaela Schmidt,
cand. med. Elisabeth Schneider, Dipl. Biol. Miriam Svorcova, Tuna Toptan MD, Lorena Urda (MTLA), Dipl. Biol. Niels Weinhold, Dipl. Biol. Felix Wussow.

Since 2006 Professor Fickenscher is the Chair of Virology and Director of the Institute for Infection Medicine,
University of Kiel and University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein.

Website Institut für Infektionsmedizin Kiel

Matthias Dittmar has been a Group Leader at the Department of Virology from 2000 to 2007.

Research interests:

  • Inhibition of HIV entry
  • post-entry restriction of HIV

Members of the Research Group Dittmar in Heidelberg:
Sabine Buschhorn (diploma student), Isabel Hagmann (TA), Patrick Kaumanns (PhD student), Sabine Lohrengel (PhD student),
Julia Luksza (diploma student), Katharina Malinowski (PhD student), Thomas Neumann (TA), Heike Oberwinkler (TA),
Sandra Reuter (PhD student), Laura Scrivano (diploma student).

In 2007 Dr. Dittmar became Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Cell and Molecular Science at the Queen Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry in London.


Ralph Kehlenbach has been a Group Leader in the Department of Virology from 2000 to 2004.

Research Interests:

  • nucleo-cytoplasmic transport, function of nucleoporins.

Members of the Research Group Kehlenbach in Heidelberg:
Marc Arnold (PhD student), Saskia Hutten (PhD student), Silvia Schütz (PhD student).

Dr. Kehlenbach is currently Group Leader at the Center for Biochemistry and Molecular Cell Biology (Biochemistry I) at the University of Göttingen.

Website Institut für Molekularbiologie Göttingen

Ulrike Protzer has been a Group Leader in the Department of Virology.

Research Interests:

  • Hepatitis B virus: models for HBV infection, HBV based gene therapy vectors, Cytokine gene therapy against HBV.

Members of the Research Group Protzer in Heidelberg:
Jerome Dumortier (PhD student), Uta Klöcker (postdoc), Heike Oberwinkler (TA), Andreas Untergasser (PhD student).

Prof. Dr. Protzer is currently the Director of the Institute for Molecular Virology at the GSF Research Center in Munich
and Director of the Institute for Virology of the Technical University of Munich.

Website Institut für Virologie TU München
Website Helmholtz Zentrum München

Steeve Boulant joined the department as a Schaller Research Group leader in 2012.

His research interests are

  • enteric viruses
  • antiviral immune response, interferons
  • Organ-on-a-chip, single cell sequencing
  • hypoxia microenvironment
  • organoids

Since 2021, Steeve Boulant is Associate Professor at the Department of Molecula Genetics and Microbiology at the University of Florida, Gainesville.