Welcome to the Jakobi Lab!


Understanding Macromolecular Structure and Function with Electron Cryo-Microscopy

Our lab studies the structure and function of large biomolecular machines. Biomacromolecules adopt intricate three-dimensional arrangments that are critical to their function. We study these structures using the high-resolution imaging tools of structural biology, in particular electron cryo-microscopy (cryo-EM) and macromolecular diffraction (MX). Since both dimension and operation level of the systems we study are at the nanometer scale, we collectively describe this as nanoscopy.

We are interested in the molecular mechanisms by which individual cells defend themselves against infection. Our research interests include the structure and function of host factors in intracellular immunity, the mechanism of force generation by large macromolecular assemblies and the role of autophagy in pathogen elimination. Research in our laboratory combines cryo-EM with other structural imaging and diffraction methods to visualize the macromolecular complexes involved in these processes, and applies biochemistry and biophysical tools to dissect their mechanism of action. The challenges implicit to this endeavour also lead us to develop, optimize and apply new approaches for cryo-EM sample preparation, image processing and data interpretation. Please have a look at the individual research areas for more details.