Patrick Matthias

Group News

Jan 2, 2024
Cracking the secrets of virus ‘uncoating’ may help fight infections
May 11, 2022
Thwarting cellular enzyme can fight viral infections
Apr 20, 2022
Structural insights into the assembly of cilia
Feb 1, 2021
A key regulator for humoral immunity and B lymphoma
All group news


Patrick Matthias

Transcriptional and epigenetic networks and function of HDACs in mammals

Molecular mechanism underlying plasticity
Stem cells give rise to differentiated cells through gradual establishment of lineage-specific gene expression programs. These result from a complex interplay of signal transduction cascades, genetic hierarchies of transcription factors and epigenetic chromatin modifiers. This creates a molecular code unique to each cell type that defines its properties and fate.
We are interested in the molecular mechanisms underlying cellular plasticity and cell-specific gene expression in a genetically tractable system and concentrate on the transcriptional and epigenetic control of lymphoid (B) cell development. For this, we study several transcription factors and epigenetic regulators that may be relevant for B cell development.

Focus on HDACs
In addition, we have a central focus on histone deacetylases (HDACs). Acetylation of histones represents a crucial epigenetic annotation of chromatin, which participates significantly in the regulation of gene expression. In addition, non-histone protein acetylation is involved in an expanding range of cellular processes. HDACs remove acetyl groups from histone N-terminal tails and thereby contribute to chromatin condensation and to the modulation of gene expression. Although the biological role of HDACs in mammals is still poorly understood, it is clear that these proteins are important in cancer as well as in various other diseases such as autoimmunity or neurodegeneration. HDACs therefore are valuable potential therapeutic targets in a number of pathological settings.

We use a broad range of methods, including the generation and analysis of transgenic or conditionally targeted mice as well as functional genomics and proteomics.

Patrick Matthias

This is a list of selected publications from this group. For a full list of publications, please visit our Publications page and search by group name.

Choukrallah MA, Matthias P (2014) The interplay between chromatin and transcription facto networks during B cell development: who pulls the trigger first?

Front Immunol 5:15

Du Roure C, Versavel A, Doll T, Cao C, Pillonel V, Matthias G, Kaller M, Spetz JF, Kopp P, Kohler H, Müller M, Matthias P (2014) Hematopoietic overexpression of FOG1 does not affect B-cells but reduces the number of circulating eosinophils

PLOS One 9:e92836

Brunmeir R, Lagger S, Simboeck E, Sawicka A, Egger G, Hagelkruys A, Zhang Y, Matthias P, Miller WJ, Seiser C (2010) Epigenetic regulation of a murine retrotransposon by a dual histone modification mark

PLoS Genet 6:e1000927

Yamaguchi T, Cubizolles F, Zhang Y, Reichert N, Kohler H, Seiser C, Matthias P (2010) Histone deacetylases 1 and 2 act in concert to promote the G1-to-S progression

Genes Dev 24:455-69

Bordon A, Bosco N, Du Roure C, Bartholdy B, Matthias G, Rolink AG, Matthias P (2008) Enforced expression of the transcriptional coactivator OBF1 impairs B cell differentiation at the earliest stage of development

PloS ONE. 3:e4007. Epub 2008 Dec 23

Karnowski A, Cao C, Matthias G, Carotta S, Corcoran LM, Martensson IL, Skok JA, Matthias P (2008) Silencing and nuclear repositioning of the l5 gene locus at the pre-B cell stage require Aiolos and OBF-1

PLoS ONE. 3:e3568. Epub 2008 Oct 30

Matthias P, Yoshida M, Khochbin S (2008) HDAC6 a new cellular stress surveillance factor

Cell Cycle 7:7-10

Zhang Y, Kwon S, Yamaguchi T, Cubizolles F, Rousseaux S, Kneissel M, Cao C, Li N, Cheng HL, Chua K, Lombard D, Mizeracki A, Matthias G, Alt FW, Khochbin S, Matthias P (2008) Mice lacking histone deacetylase 6 have hyperacetylated tubulin but are viable and develop normally

Mol Cell Biol 28:1688-1701

Boyault C, Zhang Y, Fritah S, Caron C, Gilquin B, Kwon SH, Garrido C, Yao TP, Vourc'h C, Matthias P, Khochbin S (2007) HDAC6 controls major cell response pathways to cytotoxic accumulation of protein aggregates

Genes Dev 21:2172-2181

Kwon S, Zhang Y, Matthias P (2007) The deacetylase HDAC6 is a novel critical component of stress granules involved in the stress response

Genes Dev 21:3381-3394

Bartholdy B, Du Roure C, Bordon A, Emslie D, Corcoran LM, Matthias P (2006) The Ets factor Spi-B is a direct critical target of the coactivator OBF-1

Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 103:11665-11670

Boyault C, Gilquin B, Zhang Y, Rybin V, Garman E, Meyer-Klaucke W, Matthias P, Müller CW, Khochbin S (2006) HDAC6-p97/VCP controlled polyubiquitin chain turnover

EMBO J 25:3357-3366

Matthias P, Rolink AG (2005) Transcriptional networks in developing and mature B cells

Nature Rev Immunol 5:497-508

Bartholdy B, Matthias P (2004) Transcriptional control of B cell development and function

Gene 327:1-23

Lins K, Remenyi A, Tomilin A, Massa S, Wilmanns M, Matthias P, Scholer HR (2003) OBF1 enhances transcriptional potential of Oct1

EMBO J 22:2188-2198

Sun J, Matthias G, Mihatsch MJ, Georgopoulos K, Matthias P (2003) Lack of the transcrip- tional coactivator OBF-1 prevents the devel- opment of systemic lupus erythematosus- like phenotypes in Aiolos mutant mice

J Immunol 170:1699-1706

Zhang Y, Li N, Caron C, Matthias G, Hess D, Khochbin S, Matthias P (2003) HDAC-6 interacts with and deacetylates tubulin and microtubules in vivo

EMBO J 22:1168-1179

Schubart K, Massa S, Schubart D, Corcoran LM, Rolink AG, Matthias P (2001) B cell development and immunoglobulin gene transcription in the absence of Oct-2 and OBF-1

Nature Immunol 2:69-74

Tiedt R, Bartholdy BA, Matthias G, Newell JW, Matthias P (2001) The RING finger protein Siah-1 regulates the level of the transcrip- tional coactivator OBF-1

EMBO J 20:4143-4152

Full list of publications
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Group leader

In current position since 1991
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PhD students

In current position since 2020
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Postdoctoral fellows

In current position since 2018
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In current position since 2023
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In current position since 2021
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Technical/Research associates

In current position since 2006
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In current position since 1997
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In current position since 2023
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PhD students

Longlong Wang (2014-2021)
Shuang Song (2014-2021)
Makoto Saito (2013-2019)
Laura Sabou (2017-2018)
Vincent Pillonel (2012-2016)
Aude Versavel (2007-2012)
Oliver Truee (2007-2012)
Teppei Yamaguchi (2003-2008)
Alain Bordon (2004-2008)
Mathieu Dalvai (2002-2007)
So-Hee Kwon (2002-2007)
Yu Zhang (1999-2004)
Indira Umareddy (2001-2003)
Ralph Tiedt (1998-2003)
Karin Schubart (1996-2002)
Steffen Massa (1994-2002)
Karin Hubertova(Schubart-) (1996-2002)
Patrick Sauter (1994-1998)
Daniel Schubart (1992-1998)
Erika Friedl (1991-1997)
Heidi Schwarzenbach (1991-1995)

Postdoctoral fellows

Ronan Kapetanovic (2021-2023)
Gerasimos Langousis (2019-2022)
Stephan Nothjunge (2019-2022)
Etori Aguiar Moreira (2017-2022)
Richard Heideman (2015-2016)
Patricia Nigg (2015-2016)
Mohamed Amin Choukrallah (2010-2016)
Yasuyuki Miyake (2010-2015)
Anand Manoharan (2009-2014)
Nina Reichert (2009-2012)
Fabien Cubizolles (2006-2010)
Camille Du Roure (2005-2009)
Markus Kaller (2006-2009)
Alexander Karnowski (2002-2005)
Yu Zhang (2004-2005)
Boris Bartholdy (1999-2004)
Ralph Tiedt (2003)
Jian Sun (1999-2002)
Valerie Geoffroy (1998-2001)

Technical/Research associates

Karen Cornille (2012)
Dominik Zingg (2010-2011)
Adam Mizeracki (2004-2005)
John Newell (1991-1998)


Mrunali Wairkar (2020-2022)
Jasmin Ostermayer (2017-2019)
Daniel Weis (2012-2014)
Joshua Phillips (2010)
Caoimhe Vallely-Gilroy (2007-2008)
Michaela Butz (2007)
Chun Cao (2004-2006)
Matthias Wrobel (2005)
Frederik Vath (2002-2004)
Carine Boetsch (1997-1999)
Claudia Mohl (1996-1997)
Laurence Ettwiller (1995-1996)
Nii Laaye Abbey (1992-1993)
Michael Hoffmann (1992-1993)

Visiting scientists

Etori Aguiar Moreira (2022-2023)
Ronan Kapetanovic (2023)
Roger Clerc (2013-2017)
Fatima Cavaleri (2006)
Thomas Brabletz (1991-1992)


PhD, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg
MSc, University of Geneva, Geneva

Positions held

Senior Group Leader, Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Basel
Junior Group Leader, Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Basel
Research Fellow, Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, MIT, Cambridge, Mass., USA
Oberassistent, Institute for Molecular Biology II, University of Zurich, Zurich
Postdoctoral Fellow (EMBO), Institute for Molecular Biology II, University of Zurich, Zurich


President of the Forum for Genetic Research, Swiss Academy of Natural Sciences
Chair, BIO 1 Panel of the Academy of Finland (Research Council for Biosciences and Environment)
BIO 2 Panel of the Academy of Finland
Opponent, University of Turku
Treasurer, Swiss Society for Cellular and Molecular Biology
Titular Professor, University of Basel, Basel
Member, Faculty of 1000
Swiss National Science Foundation Senior Fellowship
EMBO Long-Term Fellowship