Team Renkawitz Lab

(September 2022, from left to right: Gamze, Madeleine, Janina, Benjamin, Mauricio, Kasia, Jörg)

Malte Benjamin BraunBenjamin studied molecular biotechnology at University of Bielefeld and RWTH Aachen. In his master thesis he worked on the subject of genetically encoded FRET based zinc sensors at the Institute of Immunology. In 2019 he joined the Renkawitz lab and the IRTG 914 graduate program of the SFB 914 for his PhD. His main research interest is to achieve a better understanding of the spatio-temporal dynamics and molecular principles of macropinocytosis in immune cells.

Janina Kroll. Janina studied biology at LMU Munich and human biology at Philipps-University Marburg. During her master thesis she conducted a functional analysis of LPA receptors in ovarian cancer cells at the Institute of Molecular Biology and Tumor Research. In 2019 she joined the Renkawitz lab and the IRTG 914 graduate program of the SFB 914 for her PhD. Her main research interest is to elucidate the mechanisms and factors of nucleokinesis during leukocyte trafficking.

Jörg Renkawitz. Jörg studied biochemistry at the LMU Munich and the TU Munich, with research stays at the Max-Planck Institute of Biochemistry, the Gene Center, the ETH Zurich and the NIH-US National Cancer Institute. For his PhD research, he investigated the molecular mechanisms of DNA repair in the lab of Stefan Jentsch at the Max-Planck Institute of Biochemistry. In 2014, he joined the lab of Michael Sixt at the Institute of Science and Technology (IST) Austria in Vienna for his postdoctoral research to study the principles of cellular navigation through three-dimensional micro-environments. In 2018, Jörg has been awarded with the endowed Peter Hans Hofschneider Professorship for Molecular Medicine (Foundation Experimental Medicine) and established his research group at the Biomedical Center Munich. Jörg’s research has further been awarded and supported by the Life Science Award Austria in Basic Research, the Junior Research Award of the Max-Planck Institute of Biochemistry, the EMBO LTF postdoctoral fellowship, the ISTFELLOW postdoctoral fellowship and the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation (BIF) PhD fellowship.

Mauricio Ruiz. Mauricio studied Molecular Biotechnology and Biochemistry at the Technical University Munich (TUM). During his master he employed intestinal organoids for oncology research during a research stay at the Columbia University Irving Medical Center. In his master thesis at the Schmidt-Supprian lab (TranslaTUM) he developed sequential and inducible gene editing strategies. Mauricio joined the Renkawitz lab and the IRTG 914 graduate program for his PhD in 2019, where he is investigating cell shape coordination of migrating immune cells. He also joined the DFG-funded Priority Programme SPP2332 Physics of Parasitism to study the mechanobiology of Toxoplasma gondii dissemination by immune cells.


Johanna Schmid. Johanna is studying medicine at LMU Munich and is currently working on her doctoral thesis. She investigates how neutrophils are influenced by the microenvironment.

Madeleine Schmitt. Madeleine studied biomedicine at Julius-Maximilians-University Würzburg. During her master thesis she established and characterized tumor models in Drosophila melanogaster at the Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. In 2019 she joined the Renkawitz lab and the IRTG 914 graduate program of the SFB 914 for her PhD. Madeleine's research focuses on investigating the mechanisms of centrosome coherence during immune cell migration in complex 3D microenvironments.

Kasia Stefanowski. Lab technician 

Maria Schickert. Master thesis student 

Alumni Team Members

Senior Scientists / PostDocs

Petra Kameritsch. Petra joined our lab from 2018 to 2022 as a senior postdoc ('Privatdozent') to establish custom-made micro engineered assays to study macropinocytosis and cell migration. She is now a researcher in the lab of Prof. Andreas Dendorfer (Walter Brendel Center for Experimental Medicine, LMU Munich). During her time in our lab, Petra contributed to the review article Kameritsch & Renkawitz, Trends in Cell Biology 2020 and to the manuscript Braun et al, ResearchSquare preprint 2024.


Medical Doctoral Thesis Students

Artur KuznetcovArtur joined us as a dent. med. student to perform his doctoral research on the mechanisms of immune cell migration. During his time in our lab, Artur contributed to the research article Kroll et al, EMBO J 2023.


Master Thesis Students

Gamze Naz Öztan. Gamze joined us in 2022 for her master thesis (Biology, LMU Munich) to perform research on centrosomes during  immune cell migration. She is now at 2NA FISH.

Bingzhi Wang. Bingzhi joined us in 2021/22 for an internship and for his master thesis (Biochemistry, LMU Munich) to perform research the hijacking of immune cells by the parasite Toxoplasma gondii. Bingzhi is now doctoral researcher with Dr. Andre Stiel (Helmholtz Center Munich). During his time in our lab, Bingzhi contributed to the to the manuscript Ruiz-Fernandez et al, bioRxiv preprint 2024.

Rifat Ara RezaRifat joined us in 2020/21 for her master thesis (Biology, LMU Munich) to perform research on the mechanisms of macropinocytosis by immune cells. She is now doctoral researcher with Prof. Nicolai Siegel, Biomedical Center, LMU Munich. During her time in our lab, Rifat contributed to the protocol guideline article Clausen et al, European Journal of Immunology 2022 and to the manuscript Braun et al, ResearchSquare preprint 2024.


Internship Students

Monika HermannMonika joined us in 2020 for an internship during her Master Biochemistry (Gene Center, LMU Munich). She is now doctoral researcher with Prof. Peter Murray (MPI of Biochemistry, IMPRS). During her time in our lab, Monika contributed to the research article Kroll et al, EMBO J 2023.

Florian Leymarie. Florian joined us in 2021 for an internship during his Master Immunology (University of Paris).

Maximilian Götz. Max joined us in 2019 for an internship during his Master Biochemistry (Gene Center, LMU Munich). He is now doctoral researcher with Prof. Julian Stingele (Gene Center, LMU Munich).

Guest Visiting Researchers

 Meng PanMeng  from Kay Oliver Schink's lab (Oslo, Norway) joined us in 2023 for a 2-weeks collaborative research visit

Lab Picture Gallery