Prof. Dr. Felix Jonas

Biochemistry of Gene Regulation
School of Science
Constructor University Bremen gGmbH  
Campus Ring 1 | 28759 Bremen | Germany
Phone number
+49 421 200-3247
Fax number
+49 421 200-3249
Email Address
Research II, Room 119; Office hours: Mo 13:00 - 14:00

May 2024 We are hiring 1 PhD Student, apply and join our group to "Explore the Molecular Basis of Transcription Factor Evolution".   Find out more here:

Research Interests

I am interested in the mechanism of gene regulation in eukaryotes, which underlies processes like the adaptation of organisms to new environments or differentiation in multicellular organisms. In particular, I aim to understand the molecular basis for the function of transcription factors, ranging from target search to gene activation or repression, and the role that chromatin, especially histone dynamics, plays during gene regulation.

For this, I work on the eukaryotic model organism S. cerevisiae and combine cutting edge experimental techniques, like CRIPSR-Cas9 gene editing and Next-Generation-Sequencing, with computational data analysis. With the bigger picture in mind, potential projects in my lab will focus on diverse questions ranging from the evolution of transcription factors, over the role of spatial organization in gene regulation, to structure-function studies of chromatin remodelers.

If you are interested in Gene Regulation and Systems Biology in General, do not hesitate to contact me, I am always looking for motivated students to join the lab for Internships, B.SC Thesis or PhD projects.

As an Example fo the research we are excited about, have a look at my Fragile Nucleosome Talk:

University Education
  • Bachelor of Science:          2008 Molecular Life Science, University of Luebeck (Germany)
  • Master of Science:             2010 Biology: Cell Biology, ETH Zurich (Switzerland)
  • Ph. D.:                                2017 Bioengineering, Imperial College London (United Kingdom)
Work Experience
  • 2011: International Program Associate at Laboratory for Integrated Cellular Systems, RIKEN (JAPAN)
  • 2015-16: Visiting Student at the Lab of Naama Barkai, Weizmann Institute of Science (Israel)
  • 2017-22: Postdoc and Senior PostDoc at the Lab of Naama Barkai, Weizmann Institute of Science (Israel)
  • General Biochemistry  Lan (Fall,  CH-100-B)
  • Introduction to Bioinformatics (Fall,  JTMS-10)
  • Current Topics in the Life Sciences (Fall, CA-BCCB-801)
  • Advanced Biochemistry II - Molecular Genetics (Spring,  CO-403-A)
Selected Publications
  • Jonas, F, Vidavski, M., Benuck, E., Barkai, N., Yaakov, G (2023). Nucleosome retention by histone chaperones and remodelers occludes pervasive DNA–protein binding. Nucleic Acids Research. 10.1093/nar/gkad615
  • Dunjić, M., Jonas, F., Yaakov, G., More, R., Mayshar, Y., Rais, Y., Orenbuch, A.-H., Cheng, S., Barkai, N., and Stelzer, Y. (2023). Histone exchange sensors reveal variant specific dynamics in mouse embryonic stem cells. Nature Communications 14, 1-19. doi:10.1038/s41467-023-39477-3
  • Kumar DK*, Jonas F*, Jana T, Brodsky S, Carmi M, Barkai N.: “Complementary strategies for directing in vivo transcription factor binding through DNA binding domains and intrinsically disordered regions” Mol. Cell (2023, DOI: 10.1016/j.molcel.2023.04.002 )
  • Jonas F*, Carmi M*, Krupkin B*, Steinberger J, Brodsky S, Jana T, Barkai N.: “The molecular grammar of protein disorder guiding genome-binding locations” Nucleic Acid Res. (2023, DOI: 10.1093/nar/gkad184)
  • Yaakov G*., Jonas F*., Barkai N.: “Measurement of histone replacement dynamics with genetically encoded exchange timers in yeast” Nature Biotechnology (2021, DOI:10.1038/s41587-021-00959-8)
  • Gera T.*, Jonas F.*, More R., Barkai N.: “Evolution of binding preferences among whole-genome duplicated transcription factors” Elife  (2022, DOI:10.7554/eLife.73225)
  • Jonas F.*, Yaakov G.*, Barkai N.: “Rtt109 promotes nucleosome replacement ahead of the replicating fork” Genome Research (2022, DOI:10.1101/gr.276674.122)
  • Carmon S.*, Jonas F.*, Barkai N., Schejter E., Shilo B.: “Generation and timing of graded responses to morphogen gradients” Development (2022, 10.1242/dev.199991)
  • Frenkel N.*, Jonas F.*, Barkai N.: “Rtt109 slows replication speed by histone N-teminus acetylation” Genome Research (2021, DOI:10.1101/gr.266510.120)
  • Jonas F., Soifert I, Barkai N: “A Visual Framework for Classifying Determinants of Cell Size” Cell Reports (2018, DOI: 10.1016/j.celrep.2018.11.087)
  • Jonas F., Royle K., Aw R., Stan G., Polizzi K.:  “Investigating the consequences of asymmetric endoplasmic reticulum inheritance in Saccharomyces cerevisiae under stress using a combination of single-cell measurements and mathematical modelling.” Synth Syst Biotechnol. (2018. DOI:10.1016/j.synbio.2018.01.001)