Meet the team



Lisa Maier


is interested in all microorganisms that live in and on our bodies, especially those that are still almost unexplored. After a degree in biochemistry, a PhD in microbiology and a postdoc in systems microbiology, Lisa started her own lab in 2019. In 2022, she was appointed full professor for Microbiome-Host Interactions at the University of Tübingen.

Lab Members

Jacobo de la Cuesta Zuluaga


Jacobo is a biologist and holds a Master's in biological sciences, degrees obtained at CES University in Medellin, Colombia. Fleeing the lab life, he obtained a PhD in bioinformatics at the Ley Lab (Max Planck Institute for Biology, Tübingen). He's the lab bioinformatician since summer 2022

Nermin Akduman


Nermin received her BA in biology from Hacettepe University in Ankara, Turkey and graduated with a master's degree in molecular microbiology from the Seoul National University in South Korea. After completing her PhD at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in Tübingen, she joined Lisa’s lab in 2020.

Andreas Vorbach

Project Manager

Andreas Vorbach graduated with a MSc in Microbiology from the University of Tübingen in 2018. For his PhD, he worked in the lab of Heike Brötz Oesterheld (IMIT, Tübingen) on drug optimisation and cellular uptake mechanisms of new antimicrobial drugs in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.

Anne Grießhammer


Anne obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Würzburg focusing on parasite cell biology in the Brehm lab. In Tübingen, she graduated with a Master’s degree in immunology and cell biology. During her Master theses, she fell in love with microbes and joined the Maier lab in 2019.

Patrick Müller


Patrick obtained his Master's degree in Molecular Medicine from the University of Tübingen and is currently pursuing his PhD in Lisa’s lab. He works on a joint project together with Bastian Molitor’s lab (Environmental Biotechnology) within the CMFI Cluster of Excellence.

Rahul Unni


Rahul holds an MSc. in Biotechnology from VIT University, India and an MSc. in Molecular Biology and Evolution from Kiel University, Germany. He earned his PhD in the group of Daniel Unterweger in Kiel University and the MPI for Evolutionary Biology, Plön, where he studied the evolution of E. coli in the gut of chronically inflamed gnotobiotic mice. Rahul joined Lisa’s group in February 2024.

Cordula Gekeler

Research Technician

Cordula holds a Diploma in Biology and has several years of experience as research technician in microbiology laboratories. She was the very first member of Lisa's lab and helped build the lab from scratch.

Eden Laing

PhD Student

Eden obtained both her Bachelor's degree in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology and her Honour's Bachelor degree in Biochemistry from Stellenbosch University. Thereafter she completed a Master's degree in Computational Biology from the University of Kent before starting her doctorate in 2022. She works on a joint project in the Maier lab together with the Bézière lab within the Werner Siemens Imaging Center.

Lara Berg


Lara completed her Bachelor’s degree in Molecular Biology at the University of California Santa Cruz. While obtaining her MSc in Molecular Cell Biology and Immunology in Tübingen, she discovered her interest for the human microbiome and is now perusing her PhD in the Maier lab.

Jan Homolak


Jan obtained an MD degree from the University of Zagreb School of Medicine (Croatia) in 2018. During his medical studies, he joined the Molecular Neuropharmacology Lab at the Department of Pharmacology and the Croatian Institute for Brain Research in the same institution where he earned his PhD in 2023 for studying the pathophysiological changes in the gastrointestinal tract in animal models of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. He joined Lisa's lab in September 2023.

Leonardo Boldt


Leonardo graduated with a Master’s degree in Biochemistry and Biophysics from the University of Freiburg in 2022 after joining the University of Tübingen for his Master Thesis. After focusing on small-molecule drugs and antibiotics research, he joined the Maier Lab in early 2023 to study the human gut microbiome.

Jinyoung Park

Research Technician

Jinyoung received an Honours Bachelor's degree in Cell and Molecular Biology and Human Biology from the University of Toronto. She then completed a Master's degree in Chemical and Bioengineering at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. With a passion for human gut microbiome research, she joined the Maier lab as a research technician.

Gemma Pitotti


Gemma Pitotti graduated with a Master of Research in Systems and Synthetic Biology from Imperial College London in 2019. For her PhD she worked at the Tytgat Institute, Amsterdam UMC, in the lab of Prof. Wouter de Jonge, where she investigated the role of the intestinal microbiome in the development of Neonatal Sepsis.


Dr. Lena Michaelis (2021-2023)

Dr. Heyde Makimaa (2023)

Dr. Taiyeb Zahir (2019 – 2022)

Melanie Brauny (2022 – 2024)

Nina Ulmer (2024)

Verena Schmidtchen (2023)

Chiara Planker (2022)

Katharina Schmitt (2021)

Patrick Müller (2020)

Hannah Reisinger (2023)

Chiara Obermüller (2022)

Paula Gallardo Villanueva (2021)

Laura Torres Ribas (2022)

Nina Ulmer (2022)

Chiara Planker (2022)

Jan-Philipp Wittlinger (2021)

Jérôme-Maurice Dobrowolski (2021)

Melanie Brauny (2020)

Katharina Schmitt (2020)

Patrick Müller (2019)

Nalini Rama Rao (2020-2022)

Thomas Hagemann (2021-2022)

Delphine Cormontagne (2022)

Viola Ueltzhöffer (2019)

Sebastian Schroth (2023 – 2024)