Research Summary

The Brueckner lab addresses fundamental questions in development, homeostasis, and malignant disease, studying paradigms in the invertebrate genetic model organism Drosophila melanogaster. Current research focuses on cell signaling, the role of the microenvironment, hematopoiesis, innate immunity, epithelial-mesenchymal transition, and organ development.

Research Funding

  • August 1, 2019 - May 31, 2023 - Molecular mechanisms of a multi-tissue innate immune response, Principal Investigator. Sponsor: NIH/NIGMS, Sponsor Award ID: R01GM131094
  • August 1, 2020 - July 31, 2021 - BMP-induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition in a dual Drosophila model, . Sponsor: RAP/Academic Senate, Sponsor Award ID: N/A
  • September 1, 2014 - August 31, 2019 - Regulation of cell signaling and developmental adaptation by sensory stimulation, Principal Investigator. Sponsor: NIH/NIGMS, Sponsor Award ID: R01GM112083
  • March 15, 2014 - February 28, 2019 - Regulation of hematopoietic development by the peripheral nervous system, Principal Investigator. Sponsor: National Science Foundation, Sponsor Award ID: IOS-1355222


Max-Planck-Institute for Biochemistry and Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, Dipl. Biol., 1994, Genetics, Biochemistry, Microbiology, Medical Microbiology
European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), Heidelberg, and University of Heidelberg, Ph.D., 1994-1999, Cell Signaling
European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), Heidelberg, Postdoc, 1999-2000, Developmental Biology and Cell Signaling
Harvard Medical School, Boston, Postdoc, 2000-2006, Developmental Biology and Cell Signaling

Honors & Awards

  • 1994
    Dipl. Biol. (equivalent BS and MS), highest mark
  • 1999
    Ph.D., summa cum laude
  • 1994-1999
    EMBL Predoctoral Fellow
  • 2000-2001
    Howard Hughes Medical Institute Associate
  • 2001
    EMBO Long-Term Fellow
  • 2001-2006
    HFSP Long-Term Fellow
  • 2003-2007
    The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Special Fellow
  • 2005
    Brian P. O'Dell Memorial Research Award from The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
  • 2011
    Hellman Fellows Program Scholar
  • 2013
    American Cancer Society Research Scholar

Selected Publications

  1. Sanchez Bosch P, Makhijani K, Herboso L, Gold KS, Baginsky R, Woodcock KJ, Alexander B, Kukar K, Corcoran S, Jacobs T, Ouyang D, Wong C, Ramond EJV, Rhiner C, Moreno E, Lemaitre B, Geissmann F, Brückner K Adult Drosophila Lack Hematopoiesis but Rely on a Blood Cell Reservoir at the Respiratory Epithelia to Relay Infection Signals to Surrounding Tissues.  View on PubMed
  2. Brückner K Renal Function: Guardian of Immune Homeostasis.  View on PubMed
  3. Makhijani K, Alexander B, Rao D, Petraki S, Herboso L, Kukar K, Batool I, Wachner S, Gold KS, Wong C, O'Connor MB, Brückner K Regulation of Drosophila hematopoietic sites by Activin-ß from active sensory neurons.  View on PubMed
  4. Fogarty CE, Diwanji N, Lindblad JL, Tare M, Amcheslavsky A, Makhijani K, Brückner K, Fan Y, Bergmann A Extracellular Reactive Oxygen Species Drive Apoptosis-Induced Proliferation via Drosophila Macrophages.  View on PubMed
  5. Sopko R, Lin YB, Makhijani K, Alexander B, Perrimon N, Brückner K A systems-level interrogation identifies regulators of Drosophila blood cell number and survival.  View on PubMed
  6. Petraki, S., Alexander, B., Brückner, K.. Assaying blood cell populations of the Drosophila melanogaster larva  View on PubMed
  7. Gold KS, Brückner K Drosophila as a model for the two myeloid blood cell systems in vertebrates.  View on PubMed
  8. Xu J, Wang AH, Oses-Prieto J, Makhijani K, Katsuno Y, Pei M, Yan L, Zheng YG, Burlingame A, Brückner K, Derynck R Arginine Methylation Initiates BMP-Induced Smad Signaling.  View on PubMed
  9. Makhijani K, Brückner K Of blood cells and the nervous system: hematopoiesis in the Drosophila larva.  View on PubMed
  10. Kelsey EM, Luo X, Brückner K, Jasper H Schnurri regulates hemocyte function to promote tissue recovery after DNA damage.  View on PubMed
  11. Brückner K Blood cells need glia, too: a new role for the nervous system in the bone marrow niche.  View on PubMed
  12. Makhijani K, Alexander B, Tanaka T, Rulifson E, Brückner K The peripheral nervous system supports blood cell homing and survival in the Drosophila larva.  View on PubMed
  13. Kockel L, Kerr KS, Melnick M, Brückner K, Hebrok M, Perrimon N Dynamic switch of negative feedback regulation in Drosophila Akt-TOR signaling.  View on PubMed
  14. Brückner K, Kockel L, Duchek P, Luque CM, Rørth P, Perrimon N The PDGF/VEGF receptor controls blood cell survival in Drosophila.  View on PubMed
  15. Labrador JP, Azcoitia V, Tuckermann J, Lin C, Olaso E, Mañes S, Brückner K, Goergen JL, Lemke G, Yancopoulos G, Angel P, Martínez C, Klein R The collagen receptor DDR2 regulates proliferation and its elimination leads to dwarfism.  View on PubMed
  16. Brückner K, Perez L, Clausen H, Cohen S Glycosyltransferase activity of Fringe modulates Notch-Delta interactions.  View on PubMed
  17. Brückner K, Pablo Labrador J, Scheiffele P, Herb A, Seeburg PH, Klein R EphrinB ligands recruit GRIP family PDZ adaptor proteins into raft membrane microdomains.  View on PubMed
  18. Brückner K, Klein R Signaling by Eph receptors and their ephrin ligands.  View on PubMed
  19. Brückner K, Pasquale EB, Klein R Tyrosine phosphorylation of transmembrane ligands for Eph receptors.  View on PubMed
  20. Brambilla R, Brückner K, Orioli D, Bergemann AD, Flanagan JG, Klein R Similarities and differences in the way transmembrane-type ligands interact with the Elk subclass of Eph receptors.  View on PubMed

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