Dr. Johannes Broichhagen
Junior Group Leader
FMP Berlin





Several techniques are available to label proteins, some of which need genetic engineering. We aim to visualize endogenous proteins by means of microscopy to learn about their localization and behaviour. This is achieved by carefully designing specific probes consisting of tight binders chemically fused to an appropriate marker. As such, we are able to look at distribution and dynamics of cell surface proteins on the nanoscale.

[Karch et al., J. Med. Chem. 2018]

[Ast et al., Nat. Commun. 2020]



Group Leader

JB studied chemistry at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg including a one-year stint with Marcus Weck at NYU and graduated in 2010 with honors. He then joined the group of Dirk Trauner at LMU Munich to dive into Chemical Biology and obtained his PhD in 2014. Next, he was working with Kai Johnsson at EPF Lausanne and at the MPI for Medical Research in Heidelberg. Since March 2020, he joined the FMP in Berlin as a Junior Group Leader.


Technical Assistant

Ramona studied Biology with a focus on genetics and molecular biology at the Humboldt University Berlin, graduating 2010 in Molecular Ecology. After a stint at WITA GmbH, she joined the FMP as technical assistant in 2011, working in the field Molecular Cellular Physiology and Mass Spectrometry. Enjoying nature and being a passionate hiker in her free time, she teamed up with JB in 2020 to support and pursue our quests in Chemical Biology.


PhD Student

Kilian studied chemistry at the Julius-Maximilian-University Würzburg (JMU) with focus on Organic, Physical and Medicinal Chemistry. For his Master Thesis he joined the group of Dirk Trauner at New York University (NYU), where he worked on photoswitchable PROTACs. After graduating in 2019, Kilian decided to join JB’s lab in 2020 to work on novel imaging techniques.


Research Intern

Since June 2020.



  • PostDoc positions available.

  • PhD position available.

  • Internships (>6 weeks) for B.Sc./M.Sc. students available

  • Funded "HiWi-Stelle" if you like helping in the lab and aim to explore Chemical Biology

We are always looking for motivated and enthusiastic people!

Interested? Send an email to JB with a letter of motivation and your CV.




37. Purification of age-distinct insulin secretory granules through antigen restriction using the CLIP-tag, Neukam, M.; Ganss, K.; Vasiljevic, J.; Broichhagen, J.; Johnsson, K.; Kurth, T.; Solimena, M., bioRxiv 2020, doi:

36. Interrogating surface versus intracellular transmembrane receptor populations using cell-impermeable SNAP-tag substrates, Poc, P.; Gutzeit, V. A.; Ast, J.; Joon, L.; Jones, B. J.; D’Este, E.; Mathes, B.; Lehmann, M.; Hodson, D. J.; Levitz, J.; Broichhagen, J.*, Chem. Sci. 2020, accepted manuscript. 

35. Signalling, trafficking and glucoregulatory properties of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists exendin-4 and lixisenatide, Pickford, P.; Lucey, M.; Fang, Z.; Bitsi, S.; Bernardino de la Serna, J.; Broichhagen, J.; Hodson, D. J.; Minnion, J.; Rutter, G. A.; Bloom, S. R.; Tomas, A.; Jones, B. J., Br. J. Pharmacol. 2020, early view.

34. The influence of peptide context on signalling and trafficking of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor biased agonists, Fang, Z.; Chen, S.; Pickford, P.; Broichhagen, J.; Hodson, D. J.; Corrêa Jr, I.; Kumar, S.; Görlitz, F.; Dunsby, C.; French, P.; Rutter, G. A.; Tan, T.; Bloom, S. R.; Tomas, A.; Jones, B. J.; ACS Pharmacol. Transl. Sci. 2020, 3, 345–360. 

33. Transformation of Receptor Tyrosine Kinases into Glutamate Receptors and Photoreceptors, Leippe, P.#; Broichhagen, J.#; Cailliau, K.; Mougel, A.; Morel, M.; Dissous, C.; Trauner, D.; Vicogne, J., Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, 59, 6720–6723.

32. Super-resolution microscopy compatible fluorescent probes reveal endogenous glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor distribution and dynamics, Ast, J.; Arvaniti, A.; Fine N. H. F.; Nasteska, D.; Ashford, F.; Stamataki, Z.; Koszegi, Z.; Bacon, A.; Jones, B. J.; Lucey, M. A.; Sasaki, S.; Hastoy, B.; Tomas, A.; Reiman, F.; D’Agostino, G.; Reiman, F.; Lynn, F. C.; Reissaus, C.; Linnemann, A. K.; D’Este, E.; Calebiro, D.; Trapp, S.; Johnsson, K.; Podewin, T.*; Broichhagen, J.*; Hodson, D. J.*, Nat. Commun. 202011, 467.

31. Branched photoswitchable tethered ligands enable ultra-efficient optical control and detection of G protein-coupled receptors in vivo, Acosta-Ruiz, A.; Gutzeit, V. A.; Skelly, M. J.; Meadows, S.; Lee, J.; Parekh, P.; Orr, A. G.; Liston, C.; Pleil, K. E.; Broichhagen, J.*; Levitz, J.*, Neuron 2020105, 446–463.

30. Genetically-targeted optical control of an endogenous G protein-coupled receptor, Donthamsetti, P. C.; Broichhagen, J.; Vyklicky, V.; Stanley, C.; Fhu, Z.; Visel, M.; Levitz, J.; Javitch, J. A.; Trauner, D.; Isacoff, E. Y., J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2019141, 11522–11530.

29. CCDC 1884029: Experimental Crystal Structure Determination, Broichhagen, J.; Burg, F.; Häfner, S.; Mayer, P.; Trauner, D., CSD Communication 2018,

28. Optical tools for understanding the complexity of beta cell signaling and insulin release, Frank, J. A.#, Broichhagen, J.#; Yushchenko, D.; Schultz, C.; Trauner, D.; Hodson, D. J., Nat. Rev. Endocrinol. 201814, 721–737.

27. SNAP-Tagged Nanobodies Enable Reversible Optical Control of a G Protein-Coupled Receptor via a Remotely Tethered Photoswitchable Ligand, Farrants, H.; Acosta-Ruiz, A.; Gutzeit, V. A.; Trauner, D.; Johnsson, K.; Levitz, J.*; Broichhagen, J.*, ACS Chem. Bio. 201813, 2682–2688.

26. A New Fluorogenic Small-Molecule Labeling Tool for Surface Diffusion Analysis and Advanced Fluorescence Imaging of β-site Amyloid Precursor Protein-Cleaving Enzyme 1 Based on Silicone Rhodamine: SiR-BACE1, Karch, S.#, Broichhagen, J.#; Schneider, J.#; Böning, D.; Hartmann, S.; Schmid, B.; Tripal, P.; Palmisano, R.; Alzheimer, C.; Johnsson, K.; Huth, T., J. Med. Chem. 201861, 6121–6139.

25. A (+)-larixol congener with high affinity and subtype selectivity towards TRPC6, Häfner, S.; Burg, F.; Kannler, M.; Urban, N.; Mayer, P.; Dietrich, A.; Trauner, D.*; Broichhagen, J.*; Schaefer, M.*, ChemMedChem 201813, 1028–1035.

24. A predictive approach for the optical control of carbonic anhydrase II activity, DuBay, K. H.; Iwan, K.; Osorio-Planes, L.; Geissler, P.; Groll, M.; Trauner, D.; Broichhagen, J.*, ACS Chem. Bio. 201813, 793–800.

23. Conditional and reversible activation of class A and B G protein-coupled receptors using tethered pharmacology, Podewin, T.#; Ast, J.#; Broichhagen, J.#; Fine, N. H. F.; Nasteska, D.; Leippe, P.; Gailer, M.; Buenaventura, T.; Kanda, N.; Jones, B. J.; M’Kadmi, C.; Baneres, J.-L.; Marie, J.; Tomas, A.; Trauner, D.; Hoffmann-Röder, A.; Hodson, D. J., ACS Cent. Sci. 20184, 166–179. 

22. Optical Control of a Biological Reaction-Diffusion System, Glock, P.; Broichhagen, J.; Kretschmer, S., Blumhardt, P.; Müksch, J.; Trauner, D.; Schwille, P., Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2018, 57, 2362–2366; Optical Control of a Biological Reaction-Diffusion System, Glock, P.; Broichhagen, J.; Kretschmer, S., Blumhardt, P.; Müksch, J.; Trauner, D.; Schwille, P., Angew. Chem. 2018130, 2386–2390.

21. Restoration of patterned vision with an engineered photoactivatable G protein-coupled receptor, Berry, H. M.; Holt, A.; Levitz, J.; Broichhagen, J.; Gaub, B. M.; Visel, M.; Stanley, C.; Kim, Y. J.; Cao, K.; Kramer, R. H.; Trauner, D.; Flannery, J.; Isacoff, E. Y., Nat. Commun. 20178, 1862.

20. Optical control of GPR40 signalling in pancreatic β-cells, Frank, J.; Yushchenko, D.; Fine, N. H. F.; Duca, M.; Citir, M.; Broichhagen, J.; Hodson, D. J.; Schultz, C.; Trauner, D., Chem. Sci. 20178, 7604–7610.

19. Potent Prearranged Positive Allosteric Modulators of the Glucagon-like Peptide-1 Receptor, Jones, B. J.; Scopelliti, R.; Bloom, S. R.; Tomas, A.; Hodson, D. J.*; Broichhagen, J.*, ChemistryOpen 20176, 501–505.

18. Optical control of a receptor-linked guanylyl cyclase using a photoswitchable peptidic hormone, Podewin, T.#; Broichhagen, J.#; Frost, C.; Groneberg, D.; Ast, J.; Meyer-Berg, H.; Fine, N. H. F.; Friebe, A.; Zacharias, M.; Hodson, D. J.; Trauner, D.; Hoffmann-Röder, A., Chem. Sci. 20178, 4644–4653.

17. Dual optical control and mechanistic insights into photoswitchable group II and III metabotropic glutamate receptors, Levitz, J.#; Broichhagen, J.#; Leippe, P.; Konrad, D.; Trauner, D.; Isacoff, E. Y., Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2017114, E3546–E3554. 

16. Remote control of glucose homeostasis in vivousing photopharmacology, Mehta, Z. B.#; Johnston, N. R.#; Nguyen-Tu, M.-S.#; Broichhagen, J.; Schultz, P.; Larner, D. P.; Leclerc, I.; Trauner, D.; Rutter, G. A.; Hodson, D. J., Sci. Rep. 20177, 291.

15. Beta cell hubs dictate pancreatic islet responses to glucose, Johnston, N. R.; Mitchell, R. K.; Haythorne, E.; Paiva Pessoa, M.-R., Semplici, F.; Ferrer, J.; Piemonti, L.; Marchetti, P.; Bugliani, M.; Bosco, D.; Berishvili, E.; Duncanson, P.; Watkinson, M.; Broichhagen, J.; Trauner, D.; Rutter, G. A.; Hodson, D. J., Cell Metab. 201624, 1–13.

14. Allosteric Optical Control of a Class B G-Protein-Coupled Receptor, Broichhagen, J.; von Ohlen, Y.; Johnston, N. R.; Meyer-Berg, H.; Jones, B. J.; Bloom, S. R.; Rutter, G. A.; Trauner, D.; Hodson, D. J., Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 201655, 5865–5868; Allosterische optische Steuerung eines Klasse-B-G-Protein-gekoppelten Rezeptors, Broichhagen, J.; von Ohlen, Y.; Johnston, N. R.; Meyer-Berg, H.; Jones, B. J.; Bloom, S. R.; Rutter, G. A.; Trauner, D.; Hodson, D. J., Angew. Chem. 2016128, 5961–5965.

13. 6-(6-(Pyridin-2-yl)-1,2,4,5-tetrazin-3-yl)pyridin-3-amine monohydrate, Broichhagen, J.; Klingl, Y. E.; Trauner, D.; Mayer, P., Acta Cryst. 2016E72, 238–240.

12. Optical Control of Insulin Release Using an Incretin Switch, Broichhagen, J.#; Podewin, T.#; Meyer-Berg, H.; von Ohlen, Y.; Johnston, N. R.; Jones, B. J.; Bloom, S. R.; Rutter, G. A.; Hoffmann-Röder, A.; Hodson, D. J.; Trauner, D., Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 201554, 15565–15569; Optische Kontrolle der Insulinsekretion mit einem Inkretinschalter, Broichhagen, J.#; Podewin, T.#; Meyer-Berg, H.; von Ohlen, Y.; Johnston, N. R.; Jones, B. J.; Bloom, S. R.; Rutter, G. A.; Hoffmann-Röder, A.; Hodson, D. J.; Trauner, D., Angew. Chem. 2015127, 15786–15790.

11. Orthogonal optical control of a G protein-coupled receptor with a SNAP-tethered photochromic ligand, Broichhagen, J.#; Damijonaitis, A.#; Levitz, J.#; Sokol, K. R.; Leippe, P.; Konrad, D.; Isacoff, E. Y.; Trauner, D., ACS Cent. Sci. 20151, 383–393. 

10. A roadmap to success in photopharmacology, Broichhagen, J.; Frank, J. A.; Trauner D., Acc. Chem. Res. 201548, 1947–1960.

9.   Azobenzene-based inhibitors of human carbonic anhydrase II, Runtsch, L. S.; Barber, D. M.; Mayer, P.; Groll, M.; Trauner, D.*; Broichhagen, J.*, Beilstein J. Org. Chem. 201511, 1129–1135.

8.   Crystal structure of (E)-1,2-bis(4-bromo-2,6-difluorophenyl)diazene, Broichhagen, J.; Woodmansee, D. H.; Trauner, D.; Mayer, P., Acta Cryst. 2015, E71, o459–o460.

7.   A red-shifted photochromic sulfonylurea for the remote control of pancreatic beta cell function, Broichhagen, J.; Frank, J. A.; Johnston, N. R.; Mitchell, R. K.; Smid, K.; Marchetti, P.; Bugliani, M.; Rutter, G. A.; Trauner, D.; Hodson, D. J., Chem. Commun. 201551, 6018–6021. 

6.   AzoCholine enables optical control of alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in neural networks,Damijonaitis, A.; Broichhagen, J.; Hüll, K.; Nagpal, J.; Laprell, L.; Woodmansee, D. H.; Urushima, T.; Schönberger, M.; Rafiq, A.; Sumser, M. P.; Kummer, W.; Gottschalk, A.; Trauner, D., ACS Chem. Neurosci. 20155, 701–707.

5.   The in vivo chemistry of photochromic tethered ligands, Broichhagen, J.; Trauner, D., Curr. Opin. Chem. Biol. 201421, 121–127.

4.   Optical control of insulin release using a photoswitchable sulfonylurea, Broichhagen, J.; Schönberger, M.; Cork, S. C.; Frank, J. A.; Marchetti, P.; Bugliani, A. M.; Shapiro, A. M. J.; Trapp, S.; Rutter, G. A.; Hodson, D. J.; Trauner, D., Nat. Commun. 20145, 5116.

3.   Optical Control of Acetylcholinesterase with a Tacrine Switch, Broichhagen, J.; Jurastow, I.; Iwan, K.; Kummer, W.; Trauner, D., Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 201453, 7657-7660; Optische Kontrolle der Acetylcholinesterase mit einem schaltbaren Tacrin, Broichhagen, J.; Jurastow, I.; Iwan, K.; Kummer, W.; Trauner, D., Angew. Chem. 2014126, 7788–7792.

2.   Bilirubin in a New Light, Broichhagen, J.; Trauner, D., Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 201352, 13868-13870; Bilirubin in einem neuen Licht, Broichhagen, J.; Trauner, D., Angew. Chem. 2013125, 14112–14114.

1.   Strain-Promoted Alkyne Azide Cycloaddition for the Functionalization of Poly(amide)-Based Dendrons and Dendrimers, Ornelas, C.; Broichhagen, J.; Weck, M., J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010132, 3923–3931.

# these authors contributed equally

* corresponding author





SoSe2020 – Biochemie der Zellkommunikation (KM2) – Humboldt Universität zu Berlin

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