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Institute of Infectology (IMED)

Laboratory for Electron Microscopy

The laboratory for electron microscopy is one of the oldest laboratories of the Friedrich-Loeffler-Institute and has been doing research on the ultrastructure and replication of animal pathogenic viruses for more than 60 years. The main objectives of these investigations are the visualization of basic intracellular stages in virus replication and the support of diagnosis of viral pathogens.

General tasks of the laboratory:

  • Morphological virus diagnostics in samples of different origin sent in for investigation
  • Studies on the replication cycle of pathogenic animal viruses in host cells/tissues as part of pathogenesis research

Main Research Topics and Projects

  • Comparative studies on morphogenesis processes of various herpesviruses, including special virus mutants
  • Comparative studies on the replication stages of viruses pathogenic for fish
  • Presentation of ultrastructure and morphogenesis stages of newly diagnosed viruses
  • Preparation and presentation of the ultrastructure of various tissues in insects (bees, mosquitoes)


  • Negative staining of viruses or subunits in suspensions (Fig. 1)
  • Embedding of cells/tissues and preparation of ultrathin sections (Fig. 2)
  • Immunolabeling of viruses, virus subunits and ultrathin sections (Fig. 3)
  • Preparation of cells/tissue for scanning electron microscopy (Fig. 4)
  • Photographic documentation/processing/analysis of results



Klupp BG, Hellberg T, Granzow H, Franzke K, Dominguez Gonzalez B, Goodchild RE, Mettenleiter TC. Integrity of the Linker of Nucleoskeleton and Cytoskeleton Is Required for Efficient Herpesvirus Nuclear Egress. J Virol. 2017 Sep 12;91(19).

Pfaff F, Schulze C, König P, Franzke K, Bock S, Hlinak A, Kämmerling J, Ochs A, Schüle A, Mettenleiter TC, Höper D, Beer M. A novel alphaherpesvirus associated with fatal diseases in banded Penguins. J Gen Virol. 2017 Jan;98(1):89-95.

Zeev-Ben-Mordehai T, Weberruß M, Lorenz M, Cheleski J, Hellberg T, Whittle C, El Omari K, Vasishtan D, Dent KC, Harlos K, Franzke K, Hagen C, Klupp BG, Antonin W, Mettenleiter TC, Grünewald K. Crystal Structure of the Herpesvirus Nuclear Egress Complex Provides Insights into Inner Nuclear Membrane Remodeling. Cell Rep. 2015 Dec 29;13(12):2645-52.