Molecular mechanisms of NET formation

We aim to understand the biophysical driving forces that lead to chromatin decondensation. Together with the Kruss Lab (Dpt. of Physical Chemistry, Bochum) we use innovative imaging techniques such as STED microscopy, AFM and life-cell imaging to unravel the fascinating process NET formation.

Inflammatory dermatological diseases 

We use mouse models and human samples to understand the role of the innate immune system, particulary neutrophilic granulocytes, in chronic inflammatory diseases such as psoriasis and systemic lupus erythematosus. 

Development of novel imaging methods

We use nanosensor-based probes that fluoresce in the near infrared (nIR) to detect small mediators of intercellular communication. Furthermore, we develop affordable and feasible super-resolution microscopy methods in the form of expansion microscopy to evaluate neutrophil morphology. 


Priebe MK, Dewert N, Amschler K, Erpenbeck L, Heinzerling L, Schön MP, Seitz CS, Lorenz VN. c-Rel is a cell cycle modulator in human melanoma cells., Exp Dermatol. 2018 Nov 22. doi: 10.1111/exd.13848.

Amschler K, Beyazpinar I, Erpenbeck L, Kruss S, Spatz JP, Schön MP. Morphological Plasticity of Human Melanoma Cells Is Determined by Nanoscopic Patterns of E- and N-Cadherin Interactions. J Invest Dermatol. 2018 Oct 28. pii: S0022-202X(18)32710-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jid.2018.09.027. 

Neubert E*, Meyer D*, Rocca F, Günay G, Kwaczala-Tessmann A, Grandke J, Senger-Sander S, Geisler C, Egner A, Schön MP, Erpenbeck L*, Kruss S*. Chromatin swelling drives neutrophil extracellular trap release. Nat Commun. 2018 Sep 14;9(1):3767. doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-06263-5.
*Equal contribution

Polo E., Nitka T.T., Neubert E.,  Erpenbeck L., Vukovic L., Kruss S., Control of integrin affinity by confining RGD peptides on fluorescent carbon nanotubes, ACS Appl Mater Interfaces, 2018 Apr 30. doi: 10.1021/acsami.8b04373.

Amschler K., Kossmann E., Erpenbeck L., Kruss S., Schill T., Schön M., Möckel S.M.C., Spatz J.P., Schön M.P., Nanoscale Tuning of VCAM-1 Determines VLA-4-Dependent Melanoma Cell Plasticity on RGD Mofifs. Mol Cancer Res., 2017 Dec 8. doi: 10.1158/1541-7786.MCR-17-0272

Schön M.P., Erpenbeck L., Wege zum Verständnis neutrophiler Dermatosen, J Dtsch Dermatol Ges. 2017 Nov;15(11):1075-1076. doi: 10.1111/ddg.13367

Erpenbeck L.*, Martinod K.*, Witsch J.T.*, Savchenko A., Hayashi H., Cherpokova D., Gallant M., Mauler M., Cifuni S., Wagner DD., Peptidylarginine Deiminase 4 promotes age-related organ fibrosis, J Exp Med, 2017 Feb;214(2):439-458. doi: 10.1084/jem.20160530 *contributed equally

Schön M.P., Broekaert S.M., Erpenbeck L., Sexy again: The renaissance of neutrophils in psoriasis, Exp Dermatology, 2017 May 4;36(18):2483-2490. doi: 10.1038/onc.2016.406

Erpenbeck L. and Schön M.P., Neutrophil Extracellular Traps: Protagonists of Cancer Progression?, Oncogene, 2017 May 4;36(18):2483-2490. doi: 10.1038/onc.2016.406

Erpenbeck L., sur Chowdhury C., Zsengellér Z. K., Gallant M., Burke S.D., Cifuni S., Hahn S., Wagner DD. and Karumanchi S.A., PAD4 deficiency decreases inflammation and susceptibility to pregnancy loss in a mouse model, Biology of Reproduction, 2016 Dec;95(6):132. doi: 10.1095/biolreprod.116.140293 

Erpenbeck L., Demers M., Zsengellér Z.K., Gallant M., Cifuni SM, Stillman I.E., Karumanchi S.A., Wagner D.D., ADAMTS13 Endopeptidase Protects against Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Inhibitor-Induced Thrombotic Microangiopathy, J Am Soc Nephrol, 2016 Jan;27(1):120-31

Amschler K., Erpenbeck L., Kruss S., Schön M.P., Nanoscale integrin ligand patterns determine melanoma cell behavior, ACS Nano, 2014 Sep 23;8(9):9113-25

Savchenko A.S., Borissoff J. I., Martinod K., De Meyer S. K., Gallant M.E., Erpenbeck L., Brill A. Wang Y., Wagner D.D., VWF-mediated leukocyte recruitment with chromatin decondensation by PAD4 increases myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury in mice, Blood, 2014 Jan 2;123(1):141-8

Quack H., Erpenbeck L., WolffH.A., SprengerT., SeitzC.S., SchönM.P., MichelsB., MiddelP., Schaefer I.M., LierschT., ConradiL.C., Oxaliplatin-induced leukocytoclastic vasculitis under adjuvant chemotherapy for colorectal cancer: Two cases of a rare adverse event, Case Reports in Oncology, 2013 Dec 11;6(3):609-15.

Erpenbeck L., Kruss S., Amschler K., Mundinger T.A., Boehm H., Helms H.J., Friede T., Andrews R.K., Schön M.P.*, Spatz J.P.*, Adhesion Maturation of Neutrophils on Nanoscopically Presented Platelet Glycoprotein Ibα, ACS Nano, 2013 Nov 26;7(11):9984-96

Kruss S., Erpenbeck L., Schön M.P., Spatz J.P., Circular, nanostructured and biofunctionalized hydrogel microchannels for dynamic cell adhesion studies,Lab Chip. 2012 Sep 21;12(18):3285-9

Erpenbeck L.and Schön M.P., Deadly allies: the fatal interplay between platelets and metastasizing cancer cells, Blood, 2010,115 (17), 3427-36 

Erpenbeck L., Rubant S., Hardt K., Santoso S., Boehncke W.H., Schön M.P. and Ludwig R.J., Constitutive and functionally relevant expression of JAM-C on platelets, Thromb Haemost 2010, 103, 857-859

Erpenbeck L., Nieswandt B., Schön M., Pozgajova M. and Schön M.P., Inhibition of platelet GPIb alpha and promotion of melanoma metastasis,J Invest Dermatol 2009, 130, 576-586

Amschler K., Schön M.P., Pletz N., Wallbrecht K., Erpenbeck L.and Schön M., NF-kappaB inhibition through proteasome inhibition or IKKbeta blockade increases the susceptibility of melanoma cells to cytostatic treatment through distinct pathways,J Invest Dermatol 2009, 130, 1073-1086

Updated: Jan 2019