Univ.-Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Friedemann Kiefer
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Univ.-Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Friedemann Kiefer
Professor of Intravital Molecular Imaging
European Institute for Molecular Imaging (EIMI)
Intravital Molecular Imaging Lab
Röntgenstraße 16
D-48149 Münster
Tel: +49 251 83-39602 / 70365-230
Fax: +49 251 83-49313
  • Research Areas

    • Development, morphogenesis and maintenance of lymphatic vessels
    • Interplay of hypoxia, the vascular systems and leukocytes in different physiological and pathological settings and its relevance for organ function
  • CV


    Habilitation: Venia Legendi in Cell Biology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Marburg
    Promotion: Dr. rer. nat. Institute of Molecular Pathology (I.M.P.) Vienna and University of Tübingen
    Diploma in Biochemistry and Physiological Chemistry
    Study of Biochemistry and Physiological Chemistry, University of Tübingen


    Professor for Intravital Molecular Imaging and Director of the European Institute for Molecular Imaging (EIMI)
    Reseach group leader (W2), Max Planck Institute, Münster
    Head of Transgenic Services, Max Planck Institute, Münster
    Group leader, Dept. Vasc. Cell Biol., Max Planck Institute for Molecular Biomedicine, Münster
    Principal Investigator, Dept. Mol. Cell Biol., Max Planck Institute for Physiological and Clinical Research, Bad Nauheim
    Postdoctoral fellow, Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, Canada
    Postdoctoral fellow, Ontario Cancer Institute, Princess Margaret Hospital, Toronto, Canada, DFG fellowship

    External functions

    Hon. treasurer of the European Vascular Biology Organization (EBVO)
    Member of the editorial board: Molecular and Cellular Biology
    Member of the editorial board: Cell News (DGZ)
    Apl. Professor, University of Münster, Faculty of Medicine, Germany
    Secretary of the German Society for Cell Biology (DGZ)
    Member of the Faculty of 1000, division of cell biology
  • Publications


    Eliat F, Sohn R, Renner H, Kagermeier T, Volkery S, Brinkmann H, Kirschnick N, Kiefer F, Grabos M, Becker K, Bedzhov I, Scholer HR, Bruder JM. Tissue clearing may alter emission and absorption properties of common fluorophores. Sci Rep 2022;12: 5551. Abstract
    Peil J, Bock F, Kiefer F, Schmidt R, Heindl LM, Cursiefen C, Schlereth SL. New Therapeutic Approaches for Conjunctival Melanoma-What We Know So Far and Where Therapy Is Potentially Heading: Focus on Lymphatic Vessels and Dendritic Cells. Int J Mol Sci 2022;23Abstract


    Arasa J, Collado-Diaz V, Kritikos I, Medina-Sanchez JD, Friess MC, Sigmund EC, Schineis P, Hunter MC, Tacconi C, Paterson N, Nagasawa T, Kiefer F, Makinen T, Detmar M, Moser M, Lammermann T, Halin C. Upregulation of VCAM-1 in lymphatic collectors supports dendritic cell entry and rapid migration to lymph nodes in inflammation. J Exp Med 2021;218Abstract
    Drees D, Scherzinger A, Hagerling R, Kiefer F, Jiang X. Scalable robust graph and feature extraction for arbitrary vessel networks in large volumetric datasets. BMC Bioinformatics 2021;22: 346. Abstract
    Kirschnick N, Drees D, Redder E, Erapaneedi R, Pereira da Graca A, Schafers M, Jiang X, Kiefer F. Rapid methods for the evaluation of fluorescent reporters in tissue clearing and the segmentation of large vascular structures. iScience 2021;24: 102650. Abstract
    Kong C, Bobe S, Pilger C, Lachetta M, Oie CI, Kirschnick N, Monkemoller V, Hubner W, Forster C, Schuttpelz M, Kiefer F, Huser T, Schulte Am Esch J. Multiscale and Multimodal Optical Imaging of the Ultrastructure of Human Liver Biopsies. Front Physiol 2021;12: 637136. Abstract
    Redder E, Kirschnick N, Bobe S, Hagerling R, Hansmeier NR, Kiefer F. Vegfr3-tdTomato, a reporter mouse for microscopic visualization of lymphatic vessel by multiple modalities. PLoS One 2021;16: e0249256. Abstract
    Sadras T, Martin M, Kume K, Robinson ME, Saravanakumar S, Lenz G, Chen Z, Song JY, Siddiqi T, Oksa L, Knapp AM, Cutler J, Cosgun KN, Klemm L, Ecker V, Winchester J, Ghergus D, Soulas-Sprauel P, Kiefer F, Heisterkamp N, Pandey A, Ngo V, Wang L, Jumaa H, Buchner M, Ruland J, Chan W-C, Meffre E, Martin T, Muschen M. Developmental partitioning of SYK and ZAP70 prevents autoimmunity and cancer. Mol Cell 2021;81: 2094-2111.e9. Abstract


    Macchi M, Magalon K, Zimmer C, Peeva E, El Waly B, Brousse B, Jaekel S, Grobe K, Kiefer F, Williams A, Cayre M, Durbec P. Mature oligodendrocytes bordering lesions limit demyelination and favor myelin repair via heparan sulfate production. Elife 2020;9: e51735. Abstract
    Martens R, Permanyer M, Werth K, Yu K, Braun A, Halle O, Halle S, Patzer GE, Bosnjak B, Kiefer F, Janssen A, Friedrichsen M, Poetzsch J, Kohli K, Lueder Y, Gutierrez Jauregui R, Eckert N, Worbs T, Galla M, Forster R. Efficient homing of T cells via afferent lymphatics requires mechanical arrest and integrin-supported chemokine guidance. Nat Commun 2020;11: 1114. Abstract


    Ghaffari A, Hoskin V, Turashvili G, Varma S, Mewburn J, Mullins G, Greer PA, Kiefer F, Day AG, Madarnas Y, SenGupta S, Elliott BE. Intravital imaging reveals systemic ezrin inhibition impedes cancer cell migration and lymph node metastasis in breast cancer. Breast Cancer Res 2019;21: 12. Abstract
    Hunter MC, Teijeira A, Montecchi R, Russo E, Runge P, Kiefer F, Halin C. Dendritic Cells and T Cells Interact Within Murine Afferent Lymphatic Capillaries. Front. Immunol. 2019;10: 11 pp. Abstract


    Bovay E, Sabine A, Prat-Luri B, Kim S, Son K, Willrodt A-H, Olsson C, Halin C, Kiefer F, Betsholtz C, Jeon NL, Luther SA, Petrova TV. Multiple roles of lymphatic vessels in peripheral lymph node development. J Exp Med 2018;215: 2760-2777. Abstract
    Dierkes C, Scherzinger A, Kiefer F. Three-Dimensional Visualization of the Lymphatic Vasculature. Methods Mol Biol 2018;1846: 1-18. Abstract
    Frye M, Taddei A, Dierkes C, Martinez-Corral I, Fielden M, Ortsater H, Kazenwadel J, Calado DP, Ostergaard P, Salminen M, He L, Harvey NL, Kiefer F, Makinen T. Matrix stiffness controls lymphatic vessel formation through regulation of a GATA2-dependent transcriptional program. Nat Commun 2018;9: 1511. Abstract
    Hägerling R, Hoppe E, Dierkes C, Stehling M, Makinen T, Butz S, Vestweber D, Kiefer F. Distinct roles of VE‐cadherin for development and maintenance of specific lymph vessel beds. EMBO J 2018: e98271. Abstract
    Lopez Tobon A, Suresh M, Jin J, Vitriolo A, Pietralla T, Tedford K, Bossenz M, Mahnken K, Kiefer F, Testa G, Fischer K-D, Puschel AW. The guanine nucleotide exchange factor Arhgef7/betaPix promotes axon formation upstream of TC10. Sci Rep 2018;8: 8811. Abstract
    Orlich M, Kiefer F. A qualitative comparison of ten tissue clearing techniques. Histol Histopathol 2018;33: 181-199. Abstract
    Seifert R, Kuhlmann MT, Eligehausen S, Kiefer F, Hermann S, Schafers M. Molecular imaging of MMP activity discriminates unstable from stable plaque phenotypes in shear-stress induced murine atherosclerosis. PLoS One 2018;13: e0204305. Abstract


    Hagerling R, Drees D, Scherzinger A, Dierkes C, Martin-Almedina S, Butz S, Gordon K, Schafers M, Hinrichs K, Ostergaard P, Vestweber D, Goerge T, Mansour S, Jiang X, Mortimer PS, Kiefer F. VIPAR, a quantitative approach to 3D histopathology applied to lymphatic malformations. JCI Insight 2017;2: e93424. Abstract
    Karpanen T, Padberg Y, van de Pavert SA, Dierkes C, Morooka N, Peterson-Maduro J, van de Hoek G, Adrian M, Mochizuki N, Sekiguchi K, Kiefer F, Schulte D, Schulte-Merker S. An Evolutionarily Conserved Role for Polydom/Svep1 During Lymphatic Vessel Formation. Circ Res 2017;120: 1263-1275. Abstract
    Seifert R, Scherzinger A, Kiefer F, Hermann S, Jiang X, Schafers MA. Statistical Permutation-based Artery Mapping (SPAM): a novel approach to evaluate imaging signals in the vessel wall. BMC Med Imaging 2017;17: 36. Abstract
    Weis V, Konigsberger S, Amler S, Wienands J, Kiefer F. Unperturbed Immune Function despite Mutation of C-Terminal Tyrosines in Syk Previously Implicated in Signaling and Activity Regulation. Mol Cell Biol 2017;37Abstract


    Erapaneedi R, Belousov VV, Schafers M, Kiefer F. A novel family of fluorescent hypoxia sensors reveal strong heterogeneity in tumor hypoxia at the cellular level. Embo J 2016;35: 102-113. Abstract
    Scherzinger A, Kleene F, Dierkes C, Kiefer F, Hinrichs K, Jiang X. Automated Segmentation of Immunostained Cell Nuclei in 3D Ultramicroscopy Images. In: Pattern Recognition - 38th German Conference, GCPR 2016, Hannover, Germany, Sept. 12-15, 2016;Springer: 105-116. Abstract


    Bălan M, Kiefer F. A novel model for ectopic, chronic, intravital multiphoton imaging of bone marrow vasculature and architecture in split femurs. IntraVital 2015;4: e1066949. Abstract
    Helker CSM, Schuermann A, Pollmann C, Chng SC, Kiefer F, Reversade B, Herzog W. The hormonal peptide Elabela guides angioblasts to the midline during vasculogenesis. Elife 2015;4: e06726. Abstract


    Born G, Breuer D, Wang S, Rohlmann A, Coulon P, Vakili P, Reissner C, Kiefer F, Heine M, Pape H-C, Missler M. Modulation of synaptic function through the alpha-neurexin-specific ligand neurexophilin-1. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2014;111: E1274-83. Abstract
    D'Amico G, Korhonen EA, Anisimov A, Zarkada G, Holopainen T, Hagerling R, Kiefer F, Eklund L, Sormunen R, Elamaa H, Brekken RA, Adams RH, Koh GY, Saharinen P, Alitalo K. Tie1 deletion inhibits tumor growth and improves angiopoietin antagonist therapy. J Clin Invest 2014;124: 824-834. Abstract
    Dartsch N, Schulte D, Hagerling R, Kiefer F, Vestweber D. Fusing VE-Cadherin to alpha-Catenin Impairs Fetal Liver Hematopoiesis and Lymph but Not Blood Vessel Formation. Mol Cell Biol 2014;34: 1634-1648. Abstract
    Pollmann C, Hägerling R, Kiefer F. Visualization of lymphatic vessel development, growth, and function. Adv Anat Embryol Cell Biol 2014;214: 167-186. Abstract


    Hägerling R, Pollmann C, Andreas M, Schmidt C, Nurmi H, Adams RH, Alitalo K, Andresen V, Schulte-Merker S, Kiefer F. A novel multistep mechanism for initial lymphangiogenesis in mouse embryos based on ultramicroscopy. EMBO J 2013;32: 629-644. Abstract
    Pollmann C, Hägerling R, Andreas M, Kiefer F. Ultramikroskopische Darstellung von Lymphgefäßen während der Fötalentwicklung und im Erwachsenenstadium der Maus. LymphForsch 2013;17: 6-12.
    Wang L, Benedito R, Bixel MG, Zeuschner D, Stehling M, Savendahl L, Haigh JJ, Snippert H, Clevers H, Breier G, Kiefer F, Adams RH. Identification of a clonally expanding haematopoietic compartment in bone marrow. EMBO J 2013;32: 219-230. Abstract


    Königsberger S, Prodöhl J, Stegner D, Weis V, Andreas M, Stehling M, Schumacher T, Böhmer R, Thielmann I, van Eeuwijk JMM, Nieswandt B, Kiefer F. Altered BCR signalling quality predisposes to autoimmune disease and a pre-diabetic state. EMBO J 2012;31: 3363-3374. Abstract
    Sabine A, Agalarov Y, Maby-El Hajjami H, Jaquet M, Hägerling R, Pollmann C,Bebber D, Pfenniger A, Miura N, Dormond O, Calmes JM, Adams RH, Mäkinen T, Kiefer F, Kwak BR, Petrova TV. Mechanotransduction, PROX1, and FOXC2 Cooperate to Control Connexin37 and Calcineurin during Lymphatic-Valve Formation. Dev Cell 2012: 430-45. Abstract


    Hägerling R, Pollmann C, Kremer L, Andresen V, Kiefer F. Intravital two-photon microscopy of lymphatic vessel development and function using a transgenic Prox1 promoter-directed mOrange2 reporter mouse. Biochem Soc Trans 2011;39: 1674-1681. Abstract
    Kiefer F, Siekmann AF. The role of chemokines and their receptors in angiogenesis. Cell Mol Life Sci 2011;68: 2811-2830. Abstract
    Neuhaus B, Buhren S, Bock B, Alves F, Vogel WF, Kiefer F. Migration inhibition of mammary epithelial cells by Syk is blocked in the presence of DDR1 receptors. Cell Mol Life Sci 2011;68: 3757-70. Abstract
    Schulte D, Kuppers V, Dartsch N, Broermann A, Li H, Zarbock A, Kamenyeva O, Kiefer F, Khandoga A, Massberg S, Vestweber D. Stabilizing the VE-cadherin-catenin complex blocks leukocyte extravasation and vascular permeability. EMBO J 2011: 4157-70. Abstract


    Böhmer R, Neuhaus B, Bühren S, Zhang D, Stehling M, Böck B, Kiefer F. Regulation of developmental lymphangiogenesis by Syk(+) leukocytes. Dev Cell 2010;18: 437-449. Abstract
    Patzak IM, Königsberger S, Suzuki A, Mak TW, Kiefer F. HPK1 competes with ADAP for SLP-76 binding and via Rap1 negatively affects T-cell adhesion. Eur J Immunol 2010;40: 3220-3225. Abstract


    Winderlich M, Keller L, Cagna G, Broermann A, Kamenyeva O, Kiefer F, Deutsch U, Nottebaum AF, Vestweber D. VE-PTP controls blood vessel development by balancing Tie-2 activity. J Cell Biol 2009;185: 657-671. Abstract


    Arnold R, Frey CR, Muller W, Brenner D, Krammer PH, Kiefer F. Sustained JNK signaling by proteolytically processed HPK1 mediates IL-3 independent survival during monocytic differentiation. Cell Death Differ 2007;14: 568-575. Abstract


    Arnold R, Patzak IM, Neuhaus B, Vancauwenbergh S, Veillette A, Van Lint J, Kiefer F. Activation of hematopoietic progenitor kinase 1 involves relocation, autophosphorylation, and transphosphorylation by protein kinase D1. Mol Cell Biol 2005;25: 2364-2383. Abstract
© CiM - Peter Grewer

“Failure is not an option”

Prof. Friedemann Kiefer performs research at the Cells-in-Motion Cluster of Excellence, investigating how lymphatic vessels are formed and preserved. In his work, though, he constantly looks beyond the boundaries of his own field to develop new ideas. His overall aim is to make contributions of lasting value. Read the interview