Institute of Applied Physics - Biophysics
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Florian Baumgart

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Phone: +43 - (0)1 - 58801 - 134896

Research Interest

T cells have the fascinating ability to recognize foreign peptide structures with remarkable high specificity and sensitivity. On the molecular level, this is achieved by specific binding of the T cell receptor (TCR) to an antigenic peptide bound to the major histocompatibility complex (pMHC) on an antigen presenting cell. TCR-pMHC binding results in the recruitment of proximal signaling components and culminates in downstream signaling and T cell activation. It is believed that the spatial organization of the TCR and components of proximal T cell signaling on the T cell plasma membrane is crucial for sensitive and specific antigen recognition. In my work, I want to get a better understanding of how the different molecular players at the T cell plasma membrane cooperate to identify potential threats. I use single molecule techniques, like superresolution microscopy and single molecular tracking, to get insights into the molecular arrangement of components of early T cell signaling. The most important model system for my work are transgenic primary murine T cells, where specific TCR-pMHC interactions can be used to study T cell activation.

 

Experience

2015-presentLead of independent research project from the Austrian Science Fund (FWF;P27941) at Vienna University of Technology:Effect of palmitoylation on early T cell signalling
2012-2015Postdoctoral position at Vienna University of Technology with Prof G. Schütz: Single molecule microscopy of the immunological synapse
2010-2012Postdoc at University of California San Francisco (UCSF) with Prof Alan Verkman: Biophysical study of cellular functions of aquaporins: cell migration, proliferation and small molecule inhibitor screening
2010PhD (“summa cum laude”) at Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Marie Curie EST fellowship): Modulation of membrane targeting and lipid-protein interaction by protein palmitoylation
2005Diploma/ Master of Science (with honors) at University of Vienna (specialization: biochemistry, cell biology and immunology); National Prize for the diploma thesis
2004-2005Diploma thesis at Universidad Complutense de Madrid/University of Vienna: Interaction of Serine Racemase (SR) with the Glutamate Receptor Interacting Protein (GRIP)
2001-2005Studies of Molecular Biology at the University of Vienna

 

Publications

Journals articles

(# denotes corresponding authorship/ * denotes equal contribution)

Baumgart F#, Arnold AM, Leskovar K, Staszek K, Fölser M, Weghuber J, Stockinger H, Schütz GJ# (2016) Label Density Variation to Probe Membrane Protein Nanoclusters in (d)STORM/PALM. Nat Meth 13, 661–664

Baumgart F, Aicart-Ramos C, Rodríguez-Crespo I (2012) Preparation and assay of recombinant serine racemase. Methods Mol Biol 794(24), 357-366.

Baumgart F, Rossi A, Verkman AS (2012) Light inactivation of water transport of aquaporin-killer red chimeras. J Gen Phys 139(1), 83-91. >chosen for journal cover<

Rossi A, Baumgart F, van Hoek A, Verkman AS (2012) Post-Golgi supramolecular assembly of Aquaporin-4 in orthogonal arrays. Traffic 13(1), 43-53.

Baumgart F, Ospina OL, Mingarro I, Rodríguez-Crespo I, Pérez-Gil J (2010) Palmitoylation of Pulmonary Surfactant Protein SP-C Is Critical for Its Functional Cooperation with SP-B to Sustain Compression/Expansion Dynamics in Cholesterol-Containing Surfactant Films. Biophys J 17(10), 3234-3243.

Baumgart F, Corral-Escariz M, Pérez-Gil J, Rodríguez-Crespo I (2010) Palmitoylation of R-Ras by human DHHC19, a palmitoyl transferase with a CaaX box. Biochim Biophys Acta 1798(3), 592-604.

Plasencia I*, Baumgart F*, Andreu D, Marsh D, Pérez-Gil J (2008) Effect of acylation on the interaction of the N-terminal segment of pulmonary surfactant protein SP-C with phospholipid membranes. Biochim Biophys Acta 1778(5), 1274-82.

Baumgart F Mancheño JM, Rodríguez-Crespo I (2007) Insights into the activation of brain serine racemase by the multi-PDZ domain protein GRIP, divalent cations and ATP. FEBS J 274(17), 4561–4571.

 

Reviews

Baumgart F, Schütz GJ (2015) Detecting Protein Association at the T cell plasma membrane. Biochim Biophys Acta 1853(4), 791-801

Baumgart F, Rodríguez-Crespo I (2008) D-amino acids in the brain: The Biochemistry of Serine Racemase. FEBS J 275(14), 3538-45. >chosen for journal cover<

 

Grants

FWF P 27941-B28: Effect of Palmitoylation on early T-cell signaling

 

PDF - Version of CV and publications.