Lab members

Catherin Niemann, PI

Catherin obtained her PhD at the Max-Delbrück-Center (MDC) Berlin, where she worked in the lab of Walter Birchmeier to investigate the role of Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) and neuregulin signalling in mammary epithelial cells. She than joined the lab of Fiona M. Watt at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund / Cancer Research UK in London to study molecular mechanisms regulating stem cell function in mammalian skin. During this time as a postdoctoral fellow Catherin developed her fascination for the many-sided functions and complex regulation of epithelial stem cells.






Giada Mantellato, Postdoc

Giada studied Biotechnolgy at the University of Padua. She performed her Master thesis at Imperial College London on the topic of skeletal muscle fiber type specification, focusing on EGFR pathway and AGD3. She is now interested in the molecular mechanisms underlying the process of tumour initiation by adult stem cells in the skin.








Ann-Helen Rosendahl, Postdoc

Ann-Helen obtained her M.D., Ph.D. at the University of Oulu in Finland, where she worked in the lab of Prof. Johanna Myllyharju, investigating the hypoxia signalling pathway, focusing on the role of HIF-prolyl 4-hydroxylases and lysyl oxidase in mouse tissues. After a few years of clinical work, she moved to Cologne for her postdoc and started working in the lab of Prof. Dr. Thomas Krieg at Köln Uniklinik. At the moment, Ann-Helen is working as a shared postdoc in the lab of PD Dr. Catherin Niemann and Prof. Dr. Thomas Krieg. She is particularly interested in elucidating the complex communication between different cells in the skin through big data analysis, such as single cell RNA-sequencing.




Deborah Delbue, Postdoc

Deborah studied Biological Sciences at the State University of Rio de Janeiro (UERJ). Her master’s thesis was carried out at the National Cancer Institute (INCA) and focused on the subcellular localization of XIAP in breast cancer cells and its association with chemoresistance. Later, she moved to Germany and obtained her doctorate at Freie Universität Berlin with projects related to defective epithelial barrier function in chronic inflammation of the intestinal mucosa. She is currently interested in stem cell-specific surveillance mechanisms, determination of stem cell fate and function, and the initiation process of stem cell-driven skin tumour.






Melanie Nelles, Technical assistant

Melanie has great experiences in tissue histological techniques as well as molecular biological methods. Melanie is taking care of the TEHU (tissue embedding and histology unit) service provided by the Center for Molecular Medicine Cologne (CMMC) at the University of Cologne.








Peter Schettina, Technical assistant

Peter is an expert in various molecular techniques including expression analysis and his work is beneficial for many different projects in the lab. He also has a strong background in cell culture techniques.









 Fred the Frog, PhD Office assistant

Whenever PhD students need support, Fred is happy to help.