Kai Thormann

Kai Thormann

Prof. Dr. Kai Thormann

Institute for Microbiology and Molecular Biology
Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen
Heinrich-Buff-Ring 26
35392 Gießen
+49-641 99 35545

Research Area

The Thormann lab is interested in the physiology and cell biology of bacterial cells. A major focus is on polar organization and identity of gamma proteobacteria mainly using bacteria of the genus Shewanella. Current research concentrates on polar markers and the molecular mechanisms underlying the spatiotemporal organization of polar localization and function of the polar flagellar apparatus and the flagella-mediated motility in structured environments. Further research interests are the formation and regulation of surface-associated communities (biofilms), and the interaction of single cells or biofilms with newly isolated bacterial phages to further understand how phages affect cells and communities and how phages or phage-derived proteins may be applied.


microbial genetics
bacterial cell biology
regulatory networks
phage-host interactions
bacterial biofilm formation

Recent Publications

1. Blagotinsek V, Schwan M, Steinchen W, Mrusek D, Hook J, Rossman F, Freibert SA, Kratzat H, Murat G, Kressler D, Beckmann R, Beeby R, Thormann KM, Bange G (2020) An ATP-dependent partner switch links flagellar C-ring assembly with gene expression. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A; doi:10.1073/pnas.200647011

2. Kühn MJ, Schmidt FK, Farthing NE, Rossmann FM, Helm B, Wilson LG, Eckhardt B, Thormann KM (2018) Spatial arrangement of several flagellins within bacterial flagella improves motility in different environments. Nat Commun 9: 5369.

3. Brenzinger S, Pecina A, Mrusek D, Mann P, Völse K, Wimmi S, Ruppert U, Becker A, Ringgaard S, Bange G, Thormann KM (2018) ZomB is essential for flagellar motor reversals in Shewanella putrefaciens and Vibrio parahaemolyticus. Mol Microbiol 109: 694-709.

twitter: #thethormannden

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