Anke Becker

Anke Becker

Prof. Dr. Anke Becker

SYNMIKRO Research Center
Comparative Genomics
Hans-Meerwein-Straße 6, 35032 Marburg
+49-6421 28 24451


Research Area

The Becker lab studies the genetics, physiology and cell biology of microbe-host interactions. Main interests are the molecular mechanisms underlying symbiotic and pathogenic bacteria-host interactions and their evolution. A major focus of the research is on soil-dwelling alpha-proteobacterial rhizobia that are capable of entering a nitrogen-fixing root nodule endosymbiosis with leguminous plants.

Further research interests are bacterial surface polysaccharides, digital information storage in DNA, evolution and function of bacterial multipartite genome architectures, and exploration of alphaproteobacterial chassis, such as Sinorhizobia and Methylobacteria, for synthetic microbiology and biotechnology.


synthetic microbiology
microbial genetics
bacterial cell biology
regulatory networks
microbe-host interactions
genomics and transcriptomics
bacterial genome editing and engineering
laboratory automation

Recent Publications, Last 3 Years

1. Schäper S, Yau H, Krol E, Skotnicka D, Heimerl T, Gray J, Kaever V, Søgaard-Andersen L, Vollmer W, Becker A (2018) Seven-transmembrane receptor protein RgsP and cell wall-binding protein RgsM promote unipolar growth in Rhizobiales. PLOS Genetics 14: e1007594.

2. Schäper S, Steinchen W, Krol E, Altegoer F, Skotnicka D, Søgaard-Andersen L, Bange G, Becker A (2017) AraC-like transcriptional activator CuxR binds c‑di‑GMP by a PilZ-like mechanism to regulate extracellular polysaccharide production. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 114: E4822-E4831.

3. Döhlemann J, Wagner M, Happel C, Carrillo M, Sobetzko P, Erb TJ, Thanbichler M, Becker A (2017) A family of single copy repABC-type shuttle vectors stably maintained in the alpha-proteobacterium Sinorhizobium meliloti. ACS Synth Biol 6: 968-984.

SYNMIKRO Young Researchers Groups

Almost all scientific members of SYNMIKRO are actively involved in DFG’s Collaborative Research Centers (Sonderforschungsbereiche), Research Training Groups (Graduiertenkollegs), or other Cooperative Research projects. Alongside performing adventurous experiments, and reporting excellent science, SYNMIKRO substantially promotes potential Young Research Group Leaders by constantly keeping its doors open to welcome and support Young Researchers planning to set up an Independent Research Group.
Our Young Research Groups