Prof. Dr. Gerd Ulrich Nienhaus

Project Leader A06, Z02

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Institute of Applied Physics
Wolfgang-Gaede-Str. 1
76131 Karlsruhe

Prof. Dr. Gerd Ulrich Nienhaus

Professional Career

since 2009

Full Professor (W3) and Director

Institute of Applied Physics, KIT, Karlsruhe

since 1997

Adjunct Professor

Physics/Biophysics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA

1996 – 2009

Full Professor (C4) and Director

Institute of Biophysics, University of Ulm


Visiting Professor

with Prof. Steve Chu, Stanford University, USA

1996 – 1997

Associate Professor

Physics/Biophysics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA

1992 - 1996

Assistant Professor

Physics/Biophysics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA


Vis. Res. Asst. Professor

Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA



University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA

1988 - 1989


Universities of Münster and Mainz


Dr. rer. nat.

Physical Chemistry, University of Münster, Advisor: Prof. Dr. Fritz Parak


Diploma in Physics

University of Münster, Germany

Achievements & Awards



Biophysical Society

since 2012


Committee for the Allocation of Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Research Awards, Alexander von Humboldt Foundation

2012 - 2020


Board of Directors, Heidelberg Karlsruhe Research Partnership (HEiKA)

2012 - 2015

Vice Dean

Faculty of Physics, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)


Excellence in Teaching Award

Faculty of Physics (Fakultätslehrpreis), KIT

2011 - 2012

Vice President

German Biophysical Society (DGfB)

2009 - 2010


German Biophysical Society (DGfB)

2008 - 2014

Council Member

International Union of Pure and Applied Biophysics (IUPAB)

2008 - 2016


Grant Review Board “Foundations of Biology and Medicine, Section 1:Biochemistry, Biophysics, Structural Biology and Bioinformatics” (DFG)

2007 - 2011


Conference of Physics Departments in Germany (KFP)

2007 - 2011

Executive Board Member

for Higher Education and Junior Scientists, German Physical Society (DPG)


Cooperation Prize Science-Industry

University of Ulm

2005 - 2008

Chairman of Commission C6 (Biological Physics)

International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (IUPAP)

2005 - 2006

Vice Dean

Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Ulm



American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

2002 - 2005

Secretary of Commission C6 (Biological Physics)




Institute of Physics (IoP, London)



American Physical Society (APS)



Center for Advanced Study, University of Illinois

1990 - 1991

Feodor Lynen Fellow

Alexander von Humboldt Foundation


Ph. D. Prize

University of Münster


Genetically encodable fluorescent protein markers in advanced optical imaging

Nienhaus K, Nienhaus GU. Methods Appl Fluoresc. 2022 Jun 29. doi: 10.1088/2050-6120/ac7d3f. Online ahead of print.
PMID: 35767981

Learn more
Two plus one is almost three: a fast approximation for multi-view deconvolution

Hüpfel M, Fernández Merino M, Bennemann J, Takamiya M, Rastegar S, Tursch A, Holstein TW, Nienhaus GU. Biomed Opt Express. 2021 Dec 7;13(1):147-158. doi: 10.1364/BOE.443660. eCollection 2022 Jan 1. PMID: 35154860

Learn more
Super-resolution RNA imaging using a rhodamine-binding aptamer with fast exchange kinetics

Sunbul M, Lackner J, Martin A, Englert D, Hacene B, Grün F, Nienhaus K, Nienhaus GU, Jäschke A. Nat Biotechnol. 2021 Jun;39(6):686-690. doi: 10.1038/s41587-020-00794-3. Epub 2021 Feb 11.
PMID: 33574610

Learn more
Measuring ligand-cell surface receptor affinities with axial line-scanning fluorescence correlation spectroscopy

Eckert AF, Gao P, Wesslowski J, Wang X, Rath J, Nienhaus K, Davidson G, Nienhaus GU. Elife. 2020 May 22;9:e55286.

PMID: 32441251

Learn more
Lef1 regulates caveolin expression and caveolin dependent endocytosis, a process necessary for Wnt5a/Ror2 signaling during Xenopus gastrulation

Puzik K, Tonnier V, Opper I, Eckert A, Zhou L, Kratzer MC, Noble FL, Nienhaus GU, Gradl D. Sci Rep. 2019 Oct 30;9(1):15645. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-52218-1. PMID: 31666627

Learn more
Wnt/PCP controls spreading of Wnt/β-catenin signals by cytonemes in vertebrates

Mattes B, Dang Y, Greicius G, Kaufmann LT, Prunsche B, Rosenbauer J, Stegmaier J, Mikut R, Özbek S, Nienhaus GU, Schug A, Virshup DM, Scholpp S. Elife. 2018 Jul 31;7. PMID:30060804

Learn more
Background suppression in fluorescence nanoscopy with stimulated emission double depletion

Gao, P., B. Prunsche, L. Zhou, K. Nienhaus, and G.U. Nienhaus. 2017.  Nat Photon. 11:163-169.

Learn more
Dual-color dual-focus line-scanning FCS for quantitative analysis of receptor-ligand interactions in living specimens

Dörlich RM, Chen Q, Niklas Hedde P, Schuster V, Hippler M, Wesslowski J, Davidson G, Nienhaus GU. Sci Rep. 2015 May 7;5:10149. doi: 10.1038/srep10149. PMID: 25951521

Learn more