Regine Kahmann



  • Advisor
  • Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities


  • Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology
Department of Organismic Interactions


  • Germany


PhD, Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics & Free University Berlin
Diploma, Georg August University Göttingen


Regine Kahmann is a microbial geneticist who studies plant pathogenic fungi.

Her research uses the biotrophic corn smut fungus Ustilago maydis as a model to uncover basic molecular principles of plant diseases. A present focus of her work concerns secreted protein effectors: how they evolved, how they are delivered into host cells, how they downregulate plant defense responses, and how modulate the host metabolism to benefit the pathogen.


Mendel medal of the National Academy of Sciences, Leopoldina, Germany, 2011
Bavarian Maximilian´s medal for Science and Art, 1999
Medal of Merit (on ribbon) of the Federal Republic of Germany, 1998
Dannie-Heineman Prize awarded by the Academy of Sciences in Göttingen, Germany,  1997
Leibniz-Prize awarded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, Germany, 1993

Relevant Publications

Schulz, B., Banuett, F., Dahl, M., Schlesinger, R.,... Kahmann, R. (1990). The b alleles of U. maydis, whose combinations program pathogenic development, code for polypeptides containing a homeodomain-related motif. Cell, 60(2), 295-306.

Kaemper, J., Kahmann, R., Boelker, M., Ma, L.J., et al. (2006). Insights from the genome of the biotrophic fungal plant pathogen Ustilago maydis. Nature, 444(7115), 97-101.

Schirawski, J., Mannhaupt, G., Muench, K., Brefort, T.,...Kahmann, R. (2010). Pathogenicity determants in smut fungi revealed by genome comparison. Science, 330, 156-158. doi: 10.1126/science.1195330

Djamei, A., Schipper, K., Rabe, F., Ghosh, A.,...Kahmann, R. (2011). Metabolic priming by a secreted fungal effector. Nature, 478, 395-398. doi: 10.1038/nature10454

Tanaka, S., Schweizer, G., Roessel, N., Fukada, F., Thines, M. & Kahmann, R. (2019). Neofunctionalization of secreted Tin2 effector in the fungal pathogen Ustilago maydis. Nature Microbiol., 4(2), 251-257. doi: 10.1038/s41564-018-0304-6