Our group studies the molecular basis of plant innate immunity. We aim at deciphering the signaling events linking perception of pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) to the establishment of immunity.

We use the leucine-rich repeats receptor kinases EFR and FLS2, which perceive bacterial EF-Tu and flagellin, respectively, as model pattern recognition receptors (PRRs).

Our work also aims at understanding how plant receptor kinases work at the molecular level and how signaling specificity is achieved between different receptor kinase-mediated signaling pathways involved in immunity and growth.

We are also exploring how outcomes of our research can be used to engineer sustainable broad-spectrum disease resistance in crops.

The Zipfel group is based both at TSL and at the University of Zurich (Switzerland) (  In addition to our own research, we also collaborate with researchers across TSL and contribute to joint research programmes.

Latest Publications

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Bjornson M, Pimprikar P, Nürnberger T, Zipfel C (2021)

The transcriptional landscape of Arabidopsis thaliana pattern-triggered immunity. Nat. Plants (2021).

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Sánchez-Martín J, Widrig V, Herren G, Wicker T, Zbinden H, Gronnier J, Spörri L, Praz CR, Heuberger M, Kolodziej MC, Isaksson J, Steuernagel B, Karafiátová M, Doležel J, Zipfel C, Keller B (2021)

Wheat Pm4 resistance to powdery mildew is controlled by alternative splice variants encoding chimeric proteins. Nat Plants. 2021 Mar 11. doi: 10.1038/s41477-021-00869-2.

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Holmes DR, Bredow M, Thor K, Pascetta SA, Sementchoukova I, Siegel KR, Zipfel C, Monaghan J (2021)

A novel allele in the Arabidopsis thaliana MACPF protein CAD1 results in deregulated immune signaling. Genetics. 2021 Feb 19:iyab022. doi: 10.1093/genetics/iyab022.

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Abel NB, Buschle CA, Hernandez-Ryes C, Burkart SS, Deroubaix AF, Mergner J, Gronnier J, Jarsch IK, Folgmann J, Braun KH, Bayer E, Germain V, Derbyshire P, Menke FLH, Kemmerling B, Zipfel C, Küster B, Mongrand S, Marín M, Ott T (2021)

A hetero-oligomeric remorin-receptor complex regulates plant development. bioRxiv preprint Jan 29, 2021 doi:

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