Sixt Group

Cellular Morphodynamics

Immune cells zip through our bodies at high speeds to fight off infections and diseases. The Sixt group works at the interface of cell biology and immunology to investigate how cells are able to migrate through tissues.

Most cells in our bodies are stationary, forming solid tissues and encapsulated organs. One exception are leukocytes, immune cells essential for both the innate and adaptive immune responses to infections. Leukocytes migrate with extraordinary speed and are used by the Sixt group as a model to study cell migration. The group works at the interface of cell biology, immunology, and biophysics, and aims to identify basic mechanistic principles that are equally important for developmental processes and cancer cells. One research focus is how the cell’s internal skeleton generates and transduces the force to change shape, move the cell body and interact with other cells. The group also investigates how cells navigate along guidance cues, specifically how they orient their polarity axis in response to chemotactic gradients. In their work, the members of the Sixt group combine genetics, pharmacology, micro-engineering, surface chemistry, and advanced imaging approaches, as well as in vivo imaging techniques.


On this site:


Team

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Jonna Alanko

Postdoc

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Zane Alsberga

PhD Student

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Mario Avellaneda

Postdoc


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Nikola Canigova

PhD Student

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Alessandra Casano

Postdoc

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Ingrid de Vries

Research Technician

+43 2243 9000 3804


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Manjunath Javoor

PhD Student

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Isabelle Mayer

PhD Student

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Patricia Rodrigues

PhD Student


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Julian Stopp

PhD Student


Current Projects

Environmental control of leukocyte migration | Cellular force generation and transduction | Interpretation of chemo-attractive gradients


Publications

Gaertner F, Reis-Rodrigues P, de Vries I, Hons M, Aguilera J, Riedl M, Leithner AF, Tasciyan S, Kopf A, Merrin J, Zheden V, Kaufmann W, Hauschild R, Sixt MK. 2022. WASp triggers mechanosensitive actin patches to facilitate immune cell migration in dense tissues. Developmental Cell. 57(1), 47–62.e9. View

Tomasek K. 2021. Pathogenic Escherichia coli hijack the host immune response. IST Austria. View

Zisis T, Schwarz J, Balles M, Kretschmer M, Nemethova M, Chait RP, Hauschild R, Lange J, Guet CC, Sixt MK, Zahler S. 2021. Sequential and switchable patterning for studying cellular processes under spatiotemporal control. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces. 13(30), 35545–35560. View

Morandell J, Schwarz LA, Basilico B, Tasciyan S, Dimchev GA, Nicolas A, Sommer CM, Kreuzinger C, Dotter C, Knaus L, Dobler Z, Cacci E, Schur FK, Danzl JG, Novarino G. 2021. Cul3 regulates cytoskeleton protein homeostasis and cell migration during a critical window of brain development. Nature Communications. 12(1), 3058. View

Stahnke S, Döring H, Kusch C, de Gorter DJJ, Dütting S, Guledani A, Pleines I, Schnoor M, Sixt MK, Geffers R, Rohde M, Müsken M, Kage F, Steffen A, Faix J, Nieswandt B, Rottner K, Stradal TEB. 2021. Loss of Hem1 disrupts macrophage function and impacts migration, phagocytosis, and integrin-mediated adhesion. Current Biology. 31(10), 2051–2064.e8. View

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ReX-Link: Michael Sixt


Career

since 2013 Professor, Institute of Science and Technology Austria (ISTA)
2010 – 2013 Assistant Professor, Institute of Science and Technology Austria (ISTA)
2008 – 2010 Endowed Professor, Peter Hans Hofschneider Foundation for Experimental Biomedicine
2005 – 2010 Group Leader, Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, Martinsried, Germany
2003 – 2005 Postdoc, Institute for Experimental Pathology, Lund, Sweden
2003 MD, University of Erlangen, Germany
2002 Approbation in human Medicine


Selected Distinctions

2016 ERC Consolidator Grant
2014 EMBO Member
2013 European Biophysical Societies Association (EBSA) Young Investigator Medal
2013 Elected member of the Young Academy of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (ÖAW)
2012 Ignaz L. Lieben Award
2011 ERC Starting Grant
2011 FWF START Award
2008 Endowed Professor of the Peter Hans Hofschneider Foundation
2003 Novartis dissertation prize


Additional Information

Download CV
View Sixt group website



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