Prof. Dr. Matias Zurbriggen

Research focus

Our research perspective is to apply synthetic biology approaches to control and understand eukaryotic signalling processes and regulatory networks in a quantitative and spatiotemporally resolved manner. To this aim I follow an interdisciplinary approach at the interface of engineering and life sciences, focusing on reconstructing and engineering synthetic signalling networks and metabolic pathways, biological sensors, and chemical and optical switches for the optogenetic control of cellular processes. 

Most important publications

  1. Andres J, Schmunk LJ, Grau-Enguix F, Braguy J, Samodelov SL, Blomeier T, Ochoa-Fernandez R, Weber W, Al-Babili S, Alabadi D, Blazquez MA, Zurbriggen MD (2024) Ratiometric gibberellin biosensors for the analysis of signaling dynamics and metabolism in plant protoplasts. Plant J. doi: 10.1111/tpj.16725.
  2. Molinari PE, Krapp AR, Weiner A, Beyer HM, Kondadi AK, Blomeier T, Lopez M, Bustos-Sanmamed P, Tevere E, Weber W, Reichert AS, Calcaterra NB, Beller M, Carrillo N, Zurbriggen MD (2023) NERNST: a genetically-encoded ratiometric non-destructive sensing tool to estimate NADP(H) redox status in bacterial, plant and animal systems. Nat Commun 14(1):3277. doi: 10.1038/s41467-023-38739-4.
  3. Jang J, Tang K, Youn J, McDonald S, Beyer HM, Zurbriggen MD, Uppalapati M, Woolley GA (2023) Engineering of bidirectional, cyanobacteriochrome-based light-inducible dimers (BICYCL)s. Nat Methods 20(3):432-441. doi: 10.1038/s41592-023-01764-8.
  4. Mor E, Pernisova M, Minne M, Cerutti G, Ripper D, Nolf J, Andres J, Ragni L, Zurbriggen MD, De Rybel B, Vernoux T (2022) bHLH heterodimer complex variations regulate cell proliferation activity in the meristems of Arabidopsis thaliana. iScience 25(11):105364. doi: 10.1016/j.isci.2022.105364.
  5. Urquiza-Garcia U, Zurbriggen MD (2021) Biofortifying green optogenetics. Nat Plants 7(2):104-105. doi: 10.1038/s41477-021-00860-x.
  6. Christie JM, Zurbriggen MD (2021) Optogenetics in plants. New Phytol 229(6):3108-3115. doi: 10.1111/nph.17008.
  7. Blomeier T, Fischbach P, Koch LA, Andres J, Minambres M, Beyer HM, Zurbriggen MD (2021) Blue Light-Operated CRISPR/Cas13b-Mediated mRNA Knockdown (Lockdown). Adv Biol (Weinh) 5(5):e2000307. doi: 10.1002/adbi.202000307.
  8. Ochoa-Fernandez R, Abel NB, Wieland FG, Schlegel J, Koch LA, Miller JB, Engesser R, Giuriani G, Brandl SM, Timmer J, Weber W, Ott T, Simon R, Zurbriggen MD (2020) Optogenetic control of gene expression in plants in the presence of ambient white light. Nat Methods 17(7):717-725. doi: 10.1038/s41592-020-0868-y.
  9. Chatelle C, Ochoa-Fernandez R, Engesser R, Schneider N, Beyer HM, Jones AR, Timmer J, Zurbriggen MD, Weber W (2018) A Green-Light-Responsive System for the Control of Transgene Expression in Mammalian and Plant Cells. ACS Synth Biol 7(5):1349-1358. doi: 10.1021/acssynbio.7b00450.
  10. Samodelov SL, Beyer HM, Guo X, Augustin M, Jia KP, Baz L, Ebenhöh O, Beyer P, Weber W, Al-Babili S, Zurbriggen MD (2016) StrigoQuant: A genetically encoded biosensor for quantifying strigolactone activity and specificity. Sci Adv 2(11):e1601266. doi: 10.1126/sciadv.1601266.