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Junior Research Group Dr. C. Jessen-Trefzer


  Dr. Claudia Jessen-Trefzer
  University of Freiburg
  Faculty of Chemistry and Pharmacy
  Albertstrasse 21                                          
  79104 Freiburg i. Br.
  Phone: +49 (0)761 203 6074
  E-mail:  Dr. Claudia Jessen-Trefzer









Academic Career and Degrees

Junior Group Leader (Habilitand)  

Postdoctoral Fellow

External Consultant

Postdoctoral Fellow

Doctor of Science (PhD)

Diploma in Chemistry

|University of Freiburg, Germany (since October 2015)

|University of Zurich, Switzerland (2015)

|Medical Device Industry, Switzerland (2014-2015)

|CEMM - Center for Molecular Medicine Vienna, Austria (2012-2014)

|ETH Lausanne, Switzerland (2012)

|University of Konstanz, Germany (2008)




Research Interests

mycobacteria – mycobacterial membrane – membrane transport and signaling – antibiotics – membrane lipids – mycobacterial protein nanocompartments



microbiology – molecular biology – biochemistry – proteomics – organic synthesis – analytical chemistry



  • Mariia Zmyslia: mariia.zmyslia(at), Phone 203-6038
  • Philipp Lohner: philipp.lohner(at), Phone 203-6038
  • Maryam Fardpour: maryam.fardpour(at), Phone 203-6038
  • Melissa Weldle: melissa.weldle(at), Tel.: 203-6038
  • Claudia Jessen-Trefzer: claudia.jessen-trefzer(at), Phone 203-6074



ABC-transporter and Proteomics - Currently we investigate different species of the mycobacterium genus using a lipoproteomics approach. We are especially interested in classifying the mycobacterial transportome in the context of mycobacterial infections.

Li, Müller, Fröhlich, Gorka, Zhang, Groß, Schilling, Einsle, Jessen-Trefzer*, Cell Chemical Biology, 2019, DOI: 10.1016/j.chembiol.2019.03.002 equal contribution


Membrane Signaling via Two - Component Systems - Mycobacteria possess several two-component systems, we are currently studying MSMEG_0244/0246 and its potential interactions with the heme binding protein MSMEG_0243.

Li, Gašparovič, Weng, Chen, Korduláková* & Jessen-Trefzer*, Frontiers in Microbiology, 2020, DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2020.570606




Lipid Anchored Photosensitizers - In order to fight mycobacterial infections at a new level, we develop novel photosensitizers that are actively incorporated into the mycobacterial membrane via the enzyme complex Ag85.

Dutta, Chaudahary, Wang, Záhorszka, Forbac, Lohner, Jessen, Argawal, Korduláková, Jessen-Trefzer*, ACS Central Science, 2019, DOI: 10.1021/acscentsci.8b00962



Encapsulins – Protein Nanocompartments in Catalysis - We synthesize organometallic catalysts to covalently incorporate into protein nanocompartments via engineered protein tags. These functional encapsulins are fascinating tools for synthetic biology or pro-drug approaches.

Lohner, Zmyslia, Thurn, Pape, Gerasimaite, Keller-Findeisen, Groeer, Deuringer, Süss, Walther, Hell, Lukinavicius, Hugel, Jessen-Trefzer*, Angewandte Chemie, 2021,


Complete List of Publications

  • Lohner P, Zmyslia M, Thurn J, Pape JK, Gerasimaite R, Keller-Findeisen J, Groeer S, Deuringer B, Süss R, Walther A, Lukinavicius G, Hell SW, Hugel T, Jessen-Trefzer C*, Inside a shell - Organometallic catalysis inside encapsulin nano-reactors, Angewandte Chemie International Edition, 2021, *corresponding author

  • Wang X, Bittner T, Milanov M, Kaul L, Mundinger S, Koch H-G*, Jessen-Trefzer C*, and Jessen HJ*, Pyridinium Modified Anthracenes and Their Endoperoxides Provide a Tunable Scaffold with Activity against Gram-Positive and Gram-Negative Bacteria. ACS Infectious Disease,, online ahead of print *corresponding author

  • Li M, Gašparovič H, Weng X, Chen S, Korduláková J*, Jessen-Trefzer C*: The two-component locus MSMEG_0244/0246 together with MSMEG_0243 affects biofilm assembly in M. smegmatis correlating with changes in phosphatidylinositol mannosides acylation. Frontiers in Microbiology, 2020, doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2020.570606 *corresponding author
  • Unzue A, Jessen-Trefzer C, Spiliotopoulos D, Gaudio E, Tarantelli C, Dong J, Zhao H, Leibl J, Zahler S, Bernasconi E, Sartori G, Cascione L, Bertoni F, Sledz P, Caflisch A, Nevado C: Understanding the Mechanism of Action of Pyrrolo[3,2-b]quinoxaline-derivatives as Kinase Inhibitors. RSC Medicinal Chemistry, 2020,11, 665-675.
  • Haas TM, Qiu D, Häner M, Angebauer L, Ripp A, Singh J, Koch HG, Jessen-Trefzer C, Jessen HJ: Four phosphates at one blow: access to pentaphosphorylated magic spot nucleotides and their analysis by capillary electrophoresis. Journal of Organic Chemistry, 2020 Jun 5. doi: 10.1021/acs.joc.0c00841, online ahead of print
  • Li M, Muller C, Frohlich K, Gorka O, Zhang L, Gross O, Schilling O, Einsle O, Jessen-Trefzer C*: Detection and Characterization of a Mycobacterial L-Arabinofuranose ABC Transporter Identified with a Rapid Lipoproteomics Protocol. Cell Chemical Biology, 2019; 26 (6): 852-862.e6 *corresponding author
  • Dutta A, Choudhary E, Wang X, Záhorszka M, Forbak M, Lohner P, Jessen H, Agarwal N, Korduláková J, Jessen-Trefzer C*: Trehalose Conjugation Enhances Toxicity of Photosensitizers against Mycobacteria ACS Central Science, 2019; 5 (4): 644–650. *corresponding author
  • Haas TM, Ebensperger P, Eisenbeis VB, Nopper C, Durr T, Jork N, Steck N, Jessen-Trefzer C, Jessen HJ: Magic spot nucleotides: tunable target-specific chemoenzymatic synthesis. Chemical Communication, 2019; 55, 5339-5342.
  • Zhang S, Zhu J, Zechel DL, Jessen-Trefzer C, Eastman RT, Paululat T, Bechthold A: New WS9326A Derivatives and One New Annimycin Derivative with Antimalarial Activity are Produced by Streptomyces asterosporus DSM 41452 and Its Mutant. ChemBioChem, 2018; 19 (3): 272-279.
  • Greule A, Marolt M, Deubel D, Peintner I, Zhang S, Jessen-Trefzer C, De Ford C, Burschel S, Li SM, Friedrich T, Merfort I, Ludeke S, Bisel P, Muller M, Paululat T, Bechthold A: Wide Distribution of Foxicin Biosynthetic Gene Clusters in Streptomyces Strains An Unusual Secondary Metabolite with Various Properties. Frontiers in Microbiology, 2017; 8: 221-221.


Postdoc and Doctoral Studies (Birth name: Trefzer)

  • Herdy B, Karonitsch T, Vladimer GI, Tan CS, Stukalov A, Trefzer C, Bigenzahn JW, Theil T, Holinka J, Kiener HP, Colinge J, Bennett KL, Superti-Furga G: The RNA-binding protein HuR/ELAVL1 regulates IFN-beta mRNA abundance and the type I IFN response. European Journal of Immunology, 2015; 45 (5): 1500-1511.
  • Hofer A, Cremosnik GS, Muller AC, Giambruno R, Trefzer C, Superti-Furga G, Bennett KL, Jessen HJ: A Modular Synthesis of Modified Phosphoanhydrides. Chemical European Journal, 2015; 21 (28): 10116-10122.
  • Licciardello MP, Müllner MK, Dürnberger G, Kerzendorfer C, Boidol B, Trefzer C, Sdelci S, Berg T, Penz T, Schuster M, Bock C, Kralovics R, Superti-Furga G, Colinge J, Nijman SM, Kubicek S. NOTCH1 activation in breast cancer confers sensitivity to inhibition of SUMOylation. Oncogene, 2015; 34 (29) :3780-90.
  • Muellner MK, Mair B, Ibrahim Y, Kerzendorfer C, Lechtermann H, Trefzer C, Klepsch F, Muller AC, Leitner E, Macho-Maschler S, Superti-Furga G, Bennett KL, Baselga J, Rix U, Kubicek S, Colinge J, Serra V, Nijman SM: Targeting a cell state common to triple-negative breast cancers. Molecular Systems Biology, 2015; 11 (1): 789-789.
  • Winter GE, Radic B, Mayor-Ruiz C, Blomen VA, Trefzer C, Kandasamy RK, Huber KVM, Gridling M, Chen D, Klampfl T, Kralovics R, Kubicek S, Fernandez-Capetillo O, Brummelkamp TR, Superti-Furga G: The solute carrier SLC35F2 enables YM155-mediated DNA damage toxicity. Nature Chemical Biology, 2014; 10 (9): 768-773.
  • Wang F, Sambandan D, Halder R, Wang J, Batt SM, Weinrick B, Ahmad I, Yang P, Zhang Y, Kim J, Hassani M, Huszar S, Trefzer C, Ma Z, Kaneko T, Mdluli KE, Franzblau S, Chatterjee AK, Johnsson K, Mikusova K, Besra GS, Futterer K, Robbins SH, Barnes SW, Walker JR, Jacobs WR Jr, Schultz PG: Identification of a small molecule with activity against drug-resistant and persistent tuberculosis. PNAS, 2013; 110 (27): E2510-E2517.
  • Trefzer C, Skovierova H, Buroni S, Bobovska A, Nenci S, Molteni E, Pojer F, Pasca MR, Makarov V, Cole ST, Riccardi G, Mikusova K, Johnsson K: Benzothiazinones are suicide inhibitors of mycobacterial decaprenylphosphoryl-beta-D-ribofuranose 2’-oxidase DprE1. JACS, 2012; 134 (2): 912-915.
  • Trefzer C, Rengifo-Gonzalez M, Hinner MJ, Schneider P, Makarov V, Cole ST, Johnsson K: Benzothiazinones: prodrugs that covalently modify the decaprenylphosphoryl-beta-D-ribose 2’-epimerase DprE1 of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. JACS, 2010; 132 (39): 13663-13665.


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