Team Member

Katharina Scheibner
PhD Student

Phone: + 49 89-3187-43167
Building/Room: Campus Neuherberg, building 3620, room 028b


Mechanism of endoderm formation

The three principal germ layers, ectoderm, mesoderm and endoderm are formed by a complex process, named gastrulation.

A critical event during gastrulation is the epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) that leads to the formation of mesoderm. The transition from an epithelial to mesenchymal phenotype is characterized by cellular changes, such as a cadherin switch from E-cadherin to N-cadherin, expression of EMT key regulators, like Snail1, increased vimentin resulting in cytoskeletal changes and eventually acquiring a mesenchymal phenotype. This process was extensively studied for the mesoderm population.

It has been hypothesized that endoderm progenitors also migrate through the primitive streak (PS) and undergo EMT followed by mesenchymal to epithelial transition (MET) to reacquire an epithelial phenotype. However, this assumption lacks experimental confirmation. To elucidate murine endoderm formation we use fluorescent imaging technology for in vivo approaches and endoderm differentiation of mESCs as an in vitro model.

Academic and Research Activities

Since Sep. 2015PhD student, Institute of Diabetes and Regeneration Research, Helmholtz Centre Munich
Apr. 2013- Sep. 2015Master of Science in Biological Sciences, Westfälische Wilhelms-University of Münster,

Thesis: “The role of epithelial to mesenchymal transition during mouse endoderm development.” Institute of Diabetes and Regeneration Research, Helmholtz Centre Munich

May 2014 - July 214 Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York Cit. >Internship; Developmental and regenerative biology, Liver department
Jan. 2013 - Mar. 2013Berlin-Brandenburg Centre for Regenerative Therapies (BCRT), Internship; Immunogenicity/ immunomodulation profiles of cells and biomaterials
Jun. 2012 - Dec. 2012Roche Diagnostics GmbH, Penzberg. Internship; Therapeutic cell initiative


Oct. 2008 - Sep. 2011 Bachelor of Sciences in Life Science,University of Applied Sciences Berlin. Thesis: "Investigating the putative application of fragment analysis for sexing of South African bird population." Inqaba Biotechnical Industries Ltd, Pretoria, South Africa



Bastidas-Ponce A, Scheibner K, Lickert H, Bakhti M. (2017) Cellular and molecular mechanisms coordinating pancreas development. Development. 144(16):2873-2888

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