Axel Behrens - Curriculum Vitae#

SECTION A: Biography and Employment History#

  • 1975 - 1987: Schools in Hitdorf and Monheim (Germany), St. Johann/Tirol (Austria)
  • 1987 - 1994: Study of Biological Sciences, Universities of Innsbruck and Vienna (Austria)
  • 1994: Diploma degree, University of Vienna (Austria)
  • 1998: PhD degree (Dr. rer. nat.), University of Vienna (Austria)

Research Positions
  • 1995 - 1998: PhD thesis at Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) Vienna, Austria, with Prof. Dr. Erwin Wagner
  • 1999 - 2001: Postdoc at Institute of Neuropathology, Univ. Zurich, Switzerland, with Prof. Dr. Adriano Aguzzi
  • 2001 - 2005: Tenure Track Group Leader, ICRF/Cancer Research UK, London (UK)
  • 2006 - present: Senior Scientist, Cancer Research UK London Institute, London (UK)

SECTION B: Publications

H-index: 34; Total citation: 4780 (April 2015)

1. Axel Behrens, Maria Sibilia and Erwin F. Wagner.
“N-terminal phosphorylation of c-Jun regulates stress-induced apoptosis and cellular proliferation”
Nature Genetics (1999), 21, 326-329.

2. Axel Behrens, Wolfram Jochum, Maria Sibilia and Erwin F. Wagner.
“c-Jun N-terminal phosphorylation mediates oncogenic transformation by v-ras and v-fos”
Oncogene (2000), 19, 2657-2663.

3. Maria Sibilia, Alexander Fleischmann, Axel Behrens, Laura Stingl, Joseph M. Carroll, Fiona M. Watt, Joseph Schlessinger and Erwin F. Wagner.
“The EGF Receptor Provides an Essential Survival Signal for SOS-Dependent Skin Tumor Development”
Cell (2000), 102, 211-220

4. Axel Behrens, Kanaga Sabapathy, Isabella Graef, Mike Cleary, Gerald Crabtree and Erwin F. Wagner.
“Impaired thymocyte apoptosis, but normal T cell proliferation and differentiation in the absence of c-Jun N-terminal phosphorylation”
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA (2001), 98, 1769-1774.

5. Christian Grimm, Andreas Wenzel, Axel Behrens, Fahrad Hafezi, Erwin F. Wagner and Charlotte E. Reme.
AP-1 mediated retinal photoreceptor apoptosis is independent of N-terminal phosphorylation of c-Jun”
Cell Death Differ. (2001), 8, 859-867.

6. Axel Behrens, Sebastian Brandner, Nicolas Genoud and Adriano Aguzzi.
“Normal neurogenesis and scrapie pathogenesis in neural grafts lacking the prion protein homologue Doppel”
EMBO reports (2001), 2, 1-6

7. Emmanuelle Passegué, Wolfram Jochum, Axel Behrens, Romeo Ricci and Erwin F. Wagner.
“JunB can replace c-Jun in mouse development and cell proliferation”
Nature Genetics (2002), 30, 158-166.

8. Axel Behrens, Maria Sibilia, Jean-Pierre David, Francois Tronche, Gunther Schutz and Erwin F. Wagner.
“Impaired postnatal hepatocyte proliferation and liver regeneration in mice lacking c-jun in the liver”
EMBO J. (2002), 21, 1782-1790.

9. Axel Behrens, Nicolas Genoud, Heike Naumann, Thomas Rulicke, Fredi Janett, Frank Heppner, Birgit Ledermann and Adriano Aguzzi.
“Absence of the prion protein homologue Doppel causes male sterility”
EMBO J. (2002), 21, 3652-3658.

10. Kazuhiko Yoshida, Axel Behrens, Helen Le-Niculescu, Erwin F. Wagner, Takayuki Harada, Junko Imaki, Shigeaki Ohno and Michael Karin.
“Amino-Terminal Phosphorylation of c-Jun Regulates Apoptosis in the Retinal Ganglion Cells by Optic Nerve Transection”
Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. (2002), 43, 1631-1635.

11. Ute Hidding, Kirsten Mielke, Vicki Waetzig, Uwe Hanish, Axel Behrens, Erwin F. Wagner and Thomas Herdegen.
“The c-Jun N-terminal kinases in cerebral microglia: immunological functions in the brain”
Biochemical Pharmacology (2002), 64, 781-788.

12. Axel Behrens, Jonathan J. Haigh, Fatima Mechta, Andras Nagy, Moshe Yaniv and Erwin F. Wagner.
“Impaired intervertebral disc formation in the absence of Jun”
Development (2003), 130, 103-109.
13. Nicolas Genoud, Axel Behrens, Gino Miele, Dimitri Robay, Frank L. Heppner, Stefan Freigang, and Adriano Aguzzi.
“Disruption of Doppel abrogates cerebellar degeneration of mice with extensive Prnp deletions”
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA (2004), 101, 4198-4203.

14. Abdolrahman S. Nateri, Lluís Riera-Sans, Clive Da Costa and Axel Behrens.
“The ubiquitin ligase SCFFbw7 antagonises apoptotic JNK signalling”
Science (2004) 303, 1374-8.

15. Gennadij Raivich, Marion Bohatschek, Clive DaCosta, Osuke Iwata, Matthias Galiano, Maria Hristova, Abdolrahman S. Nateri, Milan Makwana, Lluís Riera-Sans, David P. Wolfer, Hans-Peter Lipp, Adriano Aguzzi, Erwin F. Wagner and Axel Behrens.
“The AP-1 transcription factor c-Jun is required for efficient axonal regeneration”
Neuron (2004), 43, 57-67.

16. Stephan Brecht, Rainer Kirchhof, Ansgar Chromik, Mette Willesen, Thomas Nicolaus, Gennadij Raivich, Jan Wessig, Vicki Waetzig, Mario Goetz, Malte Claussen, Damien Pearse, Chia-Yi Kuan, Elisabetha Vaudano, Axel Behrens, Erwin Wagner, Richard A. Flavell, Roger J. Davis and Thomas Herdegen.
“Specific pathophysiological functions of JNK isoforms in the brain”
Eur. J. Neurosci. (2005), 21, 363-377.

17. Abdolrahman S. Nateri, Bradley Spencer-Dene and Axel Behrens.
“Interaction of phosphorylated c-Jun with TCF4 regulates intestinal cancer development”
Nature (2005), 437, 281-285

18. Lluís Riera-Sans and Axel Behrens.
“Regulation of alpha beta/gamma delta T cell lineage development by the AP-1 transcription factor c-Jun".
J. Immunology (2007), 178, 5690-5700.

19. Johannes Vogel, Markus A. Weigand, Axel Behrens, Erwin F. Wagner, Marina Schorpp-Kistner, and Johannes Schenkel.
“Infarct volume after transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAo) can be reduced by attenuation but not by inactivation of c-Jun action”.
Brain Research (2007), 1151, 12-19.

20. Nnennaya Kanu and Axel Behrens.
“ATMIN defines a NBS1-independent pathway of ATM signalling".
EMBO J. (2007), 6, 2933-2941.

21. Abdolrahman S. Nateri, Gennadij Raivich, Christine Gebhardt, Clive Da Costa, Martin Vreugdenhil, Milan Makwana, Sebastian Brandner, Ralf H. Adams, John G. R. Jefferys, Oliver Kann and Axel Behrens.
”ERK activation causes epilepsy by stimulating NMDA receptor activity”.
EMBO J. (2007), 26, 4891-901.

22. David B. Parkinson, Ambily Bhaskaran, Peter Arthur-Farraj, Luke Noon, Ashwin Woodhoo, Alison Lloyd, M. Laura Feltri, Lawrence Wrabetz, Axel Behrens, Rhona Mirsky and Kristjan R. Jessen.
“c-Jun is a negative regulator of myelination”.
J Cell Biol. (2008), 181, 625-37.

23. Rocio Sancho, Abdolrahman S Nateri, Amaya Garcia de Vinuesa, Cristina Aguilera, Emma Nye, Bradley Spencer-Dene and Axel Behrens.
“JNK signalling modulates intestinal homeostasis and tumourigenesis in mice”.
EMBO J. (2009), 28, 1843-54.

24. Milan Makwana, Alexander Werner, Alejandro Acosta-Saltos, Roman Gonitel, Abirami Pararajasingham, Crystal Ruff, Prakasham Rumajogee, Dan Cuthill, Mathias Galiano, Marion Bohatschek, Adam S. Wallace, Patrick N. Anderson, Ulrike Mayer, Axel Behrens , Gennadij Raivich.
“Peripheral facial nerve axotomy in mice causes sprouting of motor axons into perineuronal central white matter: Time course and molecular characterization”.
J Comp Neurol. (2010). 518, 699-721.

25. Christa Maes, Steven Goossens, Sonia Bartunkova, Benjamin Drogat, Lieve Coenegrachts, Ingrid Stockmans, Karen Moermans, Omar Nyabi, Katharina Haigh, Michael Naessens, Lieven Haenebalcke, Jan P Tuckermann, Marc Tjwa, Peter Carmeliet, Vice Mandic, Jean-Pierre David, Axel Behrens, Andras Nagy, Geert Carmeliet and Jody J Haigh.
“Increased skeletal VEGF enhances beta-catenin activity and results in excessively ossified bones”.
EMBO J. (2010), 29, 424-41.

26. Joerg D Hoeck, Anett Jandke, Sophia M Blake, Emma Nye, Bradley Spencer-Dene, Sebastian Brandner and Axel Behrens.
“Fbw7 controls neural stem cell differentiation and progenitor apoptosis by antagonising Notch and JNK/c-Jun signalling”.
Nature Neuroscience (2010), 13, 1365-72.

27. Clive R. Da Costa, Javier Villadiego, Rocio Sancho, Xavier Fontana, Graham Packham, Abdolrahman S. Nateri, and Axel Behrens.
“Bag1-L is a phosphorylation-dependent coactivator of c-Jun during neuronal apoptosis”.
MCB (2010), 30(15),3842-52.

28. Rocio Sancho, Anett Jandke, Hayley Davis, Markus E. Diefenbacher, Ian Tomlinson, and Axel Behrens.
“Fbw7 regulates intestinal cell lineage commitment and is a haploinsufficient suppressor of intestinal tumourigenesis”.
Gastroenterology (2010), 139(3), 929-941.

29. Clare C. Davies, Atanu Chakraborty, Filippo Cipriani, Katharina Haigh, Jody J. Haigh, and Axel Behrens.
“Identification of a coactivator that links growth factor signalling to c-Jun/AP-1 activation”.
Nature Cell Biology (2010), 12(10):963-72.

30. Nnennaya Kanu, Kay Penicud, Mariya Hristova, Barnaby Wong, Elaine Irvine, Florian Plattner, Gennadij Raivich, and Axel Behrens.
“The ATM cofactor ATMIN protects against oxidative stress and prevents accumulation of DNA damage in the ageing brain”.
J Biol Chem. (2010), 285(49), 38534-42.

31. Cristina Aguilera, Kentaro Nakagawa, Rocio Sancho, Atanu Chakraborty, Brian Hendrich and Axel Behrens.
“N-terminal phosphorylation antagonises recruitment of the Mbd3/NuRD repressor complex”.
Nature (2011), 469(7329), 231-5.

32. Roya Babaei-Jadidi, Ningning Li, Anas Saadeddin, Bradley Spencer-Dene, Anett Jandke, Belal Muhammad, ElSayed E. Ibrahim, Ranjithmenon Muraleedharan, Mohammed Abuzinadah, Hayley Davis, Annabelle Lewis, Susan Watson, Axel Behrens, Ian Tomlinson, and Abdolrahman Shams Nateri.
“FBXW7 influences murine intestinal homeostasis and cancer, targeting Notch, Jun, and DEK for degradation”.
J Exp Med. (2011), 208(2), 295-312.

33. Hayley Davis, Annabelle Lewis, Bradley Spencer-Dene, Hilda Tateossian, Gordon Stamp, Axel Behrens and Ian Tomlinson.
“Fbxw7 WD40 repeat mutations found in human cancers are functionally distinct from null alleles and disrupt lung development”.
The Journal of Pathology (2011), 224(2),180-9.

34. Joanna I. Loizou, Rocio Sancho, Nnennaya Kanu, Daniel J. Bolland, Fengtang Yang, Cristina Rada, Anne E. Corcoran and Axel Behrens.
“The ATM cofactor ATMIN is required for maintenance of genomic stability and suppression of B cell lymphoma”.
Cancer Cell (2011), 9(5), 587-600.

35. Anett Jandke, Clive Da Costa, Rocio Sancho, Emma Nye, Bradley Spencer Dene and Axel Behrens.
“The F-box protein Fbw7 is required for cerebellar development”.
Developmental Biology (2011), 358, 201-12.

36. Nicola Reynolds, Mali Salmon-Divon, Heidi Dvinge, Antony Hynes-Allen, Gayan Balasooriya, Donna Leaford, Axel Behrens, Paul Bertone and Brian Hendrich.
“NuRD-mediated deacetylation of H3K27 facilitates recruitment of Polycomb Repressive Complex 2 to direct gene repression”
EMBO J. (2011), 31, 593-605.

37. Nicola Reynolds, Paulina Latos, Antony Hynes-Allen, Remco Loos, Donna Leaford, Aoife O’Shaughnessy, Olukunbi Mosaku, Jason Signolet, Philip Brennecke, Tüzer Kalkan, Ita Costello, Peter Humphreys, William Mansfield, Kentaro Nakagawa, I. John Strouboulis, Axel Behrens, Paul Bertone and Brian Hendrich
“NuRD suppresses pluripotency gene expression to promote transcriptional heterogeneity and lineage commitment”.
Cell Stem Cell (2012), 10, 583-94.

38. Madhu S Kumar, David C Hancock, Miriam Molina-Arcas, Michael Steckel, Phillip East, Markus Diefenbacher, Elena Armenteros-Monterroso, Francois Lassailly, Nik Matthews, Emma Nye, Gordon Stamp, Axel Behrens and Julian Downward
“The GATA2-driven oncogene network is requisite for RAS oncogene-driven no-small cell lung cancer”.
Cell (2012), 149(3):642-55.

39. Amaya G. Vinuesa, Rocio Sancho2, Carmen Garcia-Limones, Axel Behrens, Peter ten Dijke, Marco A. Calzado and Eduardo Munoz.
“The vanilloid receptor regulates neurogenic inflammation in colon and protects from colon cancer”.
Cancer Research (2012), 72(7), 1705-16.

40. Crystal A. Ruff, Nils Staak, Smriti Patodia, Mark Kaswich, Eridan Rocha-Ferreira, Clive Da Costa, Stephan Brecht, Milan Makwana, Xavier Fontana, Mariya Hristova, Prakasham Rumajogee, Matthias Galiano, Marion Bohatschek, Thomas Herdegen, Axel Behrens and Gennadij Raivich.
“Neuronal c-Jun is required for successful axonal regeneration, but the effects of phosphorylation of its N-terminus are moderate”.
J. Neurochem., (2012), 121(4), 607-18.

41. Peter J. Arthur-Farraj, Morwena Latouche, Daniel K. Wilton, Susanne Quintes, Elodie Chabrol, Ambily Banerjee, Ashwin Woodhoo, Billy Jenkins, Mary Rahman, Mark Turmaine, Grzegorz K.Wicher, Linda Greensmith, Axel Behrens, Gennadij Raivich, Rhona Mirsky and Kristján R. Jessen
“c-Jun reprograms Schwann cells of injured nerves to generate a repair cell essential for regeneration”
Neuron, (2012), 75, 633-47.

42. Xavier Fontana, Mariya Hristova, Clive Da Costa, Smriti Patodia, Laura Thei, Milan Makwana, Bradley Spencer-Dene, Morwena Latouche, Rhona Mirsky, Kristjan R. Jessen, Rüdiger Klein, Gennadij Raivich and Axel Behrens.
“c-Jun in Schwann cells is required for neuronal regeneration by controlling paracrine signaling”.
J Cell Biol. (2012), 198, 127-41.

43. Nanae Izumi, Christian Helker, Manuel Ehling1, Axel Behrens, Wiebke Herzog, and Ralf H. Adams
“Fbxw7 controls angiogenesis by regulating endothelial Notch activity”.
PLOS One (2012), 7(7):e41116.

44. Tianyi Zhang, Kay Penicud, Christopher Bruhn, Joanna I. Loizou,
Nnennaya Kanu, Zhao-Qi Wang and Axel Behrens.
“Competition between NBS1 and ATMIN controls ATM signalling pathway choice”.
Cell Rep. (2012), 2(6), 1498-504.

45. Rocio Sancho, Sophia M. Blake, Christian Tendeng, Bruce Clurman, Julian Lewis, and Axel Behrens.
“Fbw7 repression by Hes proteins creates a feedback loop that modulates Notch-mediated neural and intestinal stem cell fate decisions”.
PLOS Biology (2013), 11(6):e1001586.

46. Rebecca A. Burrell, Sarah E. McClelland, David Endesfelder, Petra Groth, Marie-Christine Weller, Nadeem Shaikh, Enric Domingo, Nnennaya Kanu, Sally M. Dewhurst, Eva Gronroos, Su Kit Chew, Andrew J. Rowan, Arne Schenk, Michal Sheffer, Michael Howell, Maik Kschischo, Axel Behrens, Thomas Helleday, Jiri Bartek, Ian P. Tomlinson, Charles Swanton.
“Replication stress links cancer structural and numerical chromosomal instability”
Nature (2013), 494(7438), 492-6.

47. Clare C. Davies, Atanu Chakraborty, Markus E. Diefenbacher, Mark Skehel, and Axel Behrens.
“Arginine methylation of the c-Jun co-activator RACO-1 is required for c-Jun/AP-1 activation”
EMBO J (2013), 32(11):1556-67.

48. Hayley Davis, Annabelle Lewis, Axel Behrens and Ian Tomlinson.
“Investigation of the atypical FBXW7 mutation spectrum in human tumours by conditional expression of a heterozygous propellor tip missense allele in the mouse intestines”
Gut (2014), 63(5), 792-799.

49. Kay Penicud and Axel Behrens.
“DNMT1-associated protein 1 (DMAP1) is an essential regulator of ATM activity and function”.
Oncogene (2014), 33, 525–531.

50. Rocio Sancho, Ralph Gruber, Guoqiang Gu , and Axel Behrens.
“Loss of Fbw7 reprograms adult pancreatic ductal cells into α-, δ-, and β-cells”
Cell Stem Cell (2014), 15,139-53.

51. Markus E. Diefenbacher, Nikita Popov, Sophia M. Blake, Christina Schülein-Völk, Emma Nye, Bradley Spencer-Dene, Laura A. Jaenicke, Martin Eilers and Axel Behrens.
“The ubiquitin protease Usp28 controls intestinal homeostasis and promotes colorectal cancer“.
Journal of Clinical Investigation (2014), 124(8), 3407-18.

52. Tianyi Zhang, Janet Cronshaw, Nnennaya Kanu, Ambrosius P. Snijders and Axel Behrens.
“UBR5-mediated ubiquitination of ATMIN is required for IR-induced ATM signaling and function”.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA (2014), 111(33), 12091-6.

53. Schülein-Völk C, Wolf E, Zhu J, Xu W, Taranets L, Hellmann A, Jänicke LA, Diefenbacher ME, Behrens A, Eilers M, Popov N.
“Dual Regulation of Fbw7 Function and Oncogenic Transformation by Usp28”.
Cell Rep. (2014), 6;9(3):1099-109.

54. Markus E. Diefenbacher, Atanu Chakraborty, Sophia M. Blake, Nikita Popov, Martin Eilers and Axel Behrens
“Usp28 counteracts Fbw7 in intestinal homeostasis and cancer”.
Cancer Research (2015), 75(7), 1181-6.

55. Atanu Chakraborty, Markus E. Diefenbacher, Anastasia Mylona, Olivier Kassel
and Axel Behrens.
“The E3 ubiquitin ligase Trim7 mediates c-Jun/AP-1 activation by Ras signaling”.
Nature Communications (2015), 6:6782. doi: 10.1038/ncomms7782.

Reviews and Book Chapters

1. Axel Behrens and Adriano Aguzzi.
“Small is not beautiful: Antagonizing functions for the prion protein PrPC and its homologue Dpl”
Trends in Neuroscience (2002), 25, 150-154.

2. Axel Behrens.
“Physiological and pathological functions of the prion protein homologue Dpl”
British Medical Bulletin (2003), 66, 35-42.

3. Nicolas Genoud, Axel Behrens, Isabelle Arrighi and Adriano Aguzzi.
“Prion proteins and infertility: insight from mouse models”
Cytogenet Genome Res.(2003), 103, 285-9.

4. Gennadij Raivich and Axel Behrens.
“Role of the AP-1 transcription factor c-Jun in developing, adult and injured brain”
Prog. Neurobiol. (2006), 78, 347-63.

5. Nnennaya Kanu and Axel Behrens.
“ATMINistrating ATM signalling: regulation of ATM by ATMIN ".
Cell Cycle (2008),15, 3483-6.

6. Clare Davies and Axel Behrens.
“Arginine methylation: Making its mark on AP-1 gene activation".
Cell Cycle (2013),15, 3483-6.

7. Catherine Cremona and Axel Behrens.
“ATM signalling in cancer ".
Oncogene (2014), 33(26):3351-60.

8. Axel Behrens, Jan van Deursen, K. Lenhard Rudolph and Björn Schumacher
“Impact of genomic damage and ageing on stem cell function”.
Nature Cell Biology (2014), 16(3), 201-7.

9. Rocio Sancho, Catherine Cremona and Axel Behrens.
“Stem cell and progenitor fate in the mammalian intestine: Notch and lateral inhibition in homeostasis and disease”
EMBO Reports (2015), pii: e201540188. [Epub ahead of print]

SECTION C: Patents

1. A. Behrens, M. Sibilia and E.F. Wagner.
New European Patent Application No.: 98 116 415.5 for Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH: “Method for identifying substances for the treatment of disorders associated with c-Jun-mediated apoptosis”.

2. J.-P. David, K. Sabapathy, A. Behrens, and E.F. Wagner.
New European Patent Application No.: 99 118 847.5 for Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH: “Method for identifying compounds useful in the therapy of bone disorders”.

3. M. Sibilia, A. Fleischmann, A. Behrens, T. Metz and E.F. Wagner.
New European Patent Application No.: 00 114 482.3 for Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH: “Novel use of inhibitors of the epidermal growth factor receptor”.

4. Abdolrahman S. Nateri and Axel Behrens.
European Patent Application for Cancer Research UK: “Inhibition of interaction of phosphorylated c-Jun with TCF4 as a therapeutic strategy for treatment of intestinal cancer”.

5. Rocio Sancho and Axel Behrens.
European Patent Application for Cancer Research UK: “Novel methodology to generate pancreatic beta-cells”.

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