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Dr Matthias Landgraf

Reader in Developmental Neurobiology

Matthias Landgraf is a University Reader in Developmental Neurobiology.

Academic interests

Matthias Landgraf's academic interests include:

  • Nervous system development and function
  • Drosophila
  • Developmental Biology
  • Neuronal plasticity and neurodegenerative conditions.

Degrees obtained

  • BSc First, University College London, 1992.
  • PhD Department of Zoology, Cambridge 1996.


I studied Genetics at University College London, then joined Michael Bate’s group as a Medical Research Council and Sir Halley Stewart Trust funded PhD student at the Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge, from 1992 to 1996.

After an interlude of national service in Berlin, I returned to the Department initially as a research associate, starting my independent research group as a Royal Society Research fellow in 2002. Since 2010 I have held an unestablished and since 2013 an established lectureship position.

Together with Dr Gregory Jefferis (MRC-LMB) we recently founded the Drosophila Connectomics group in Zoology, funded by the Wellcome Trust Collaborative Award (£3.25M) in collaboration with Prof. Scott Waddell (Oxford), Prof. Gerry Rubin and Dr Davi Bock (HHMI Janelia Research Campus). The aim of this consortium is to reconstruct from a electron microscopy volume of an adult fly the circuitry for learning, memory and memory retrieval, to discover wiring principles and to inform current and future experimental research in this area.

Department link

Publications, links and resources

  • Zwart MF, Pulver SR, Truman JW, Fushiki A, Fetter, RD, Cardona A, Landgraf M. (2016). Selective Inhibition Mediates the Sequential Recruitment of Motor Pools. Neuron 91(3):615-628.  DOI: 10.1016/j.neuron.2016.06.031.  
  • Peco E, Davla S, Camp D, Stacey S, Landgraf M, van Meyel D. (2016). Drosophila astrocytes cover specific territories of CNS neuropil and are instructed to differentiate by Prospero, a key effector of Notch. Development. 143(7):1170-1181.   DOI: 10.1242/dev.133165.    
  • Picao-Osorio J, Johnston J, Landgraf M, Berni J, Alonso CR (2015).  MicroRNA-encoded behavior in Drosophila. Science 350: 815–820.  DOI: 10.1126/science.aad0217.
  • Heckscher ES, Zarin AA, Faumont S, Clark MQ, Manning L, Fushiki A, Schneider-Mizell CM, Fetter RD, Truman JW, Zwart MF, Landgraf M, Cardona A, Lockery SR, Doe CQ. Even-Skipped(+) Interneurons Are Core Components of a Sensorimotor Circuit that Maintains Left-Right Symmetric Muscle Contraction Amplitude. Neuron (September 30, 2015). doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2015.09.009.
  • Couton, L., Mauss, A.S., Yunusov, T., Diegelmann, S., Evers, J.F., Landgraf, M. (2015) Development of connectivity in a motoneuronal network in Drosophila larvae. Curr Biol, 25, pp 568–576. (see also Dispatch by Sternberg JR, Wyart C. Neuronal wiring: linking dendrite placement to synapse formation. Curr Biol 25: R190–1, 2015.)
  • Diao, F., Ironfield, H., Luan, H., Diao, F., Shropshire, W.C., Ewer, J., Marr, E., Potter, C.J., Landgraf, M., White, B.H. (2015) Plug-and-Play Genetic Access to Drosophila Cell Types using Exchangeable Exon Cassettes. Cell Rep, 10, pp 1410–1421.
  • Zwart, M.F., Randlett, O., Evers, J.F., Landgraf, M. (2013) Dendritic growth gated by a steroid hormone receptor underlies increases in activity in the developing Drosophila locomotor system. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1311711110.
  • Mauss, A., Tripodi, M., Evers, J.F. and Landgraf, M. (2009) Midline signalling systems direct the formation of a neural map by dendritic targeting in the Drosophila motor system. PLoS Biol, 7, e1000200.
  • Tripodi, M., Evers, J.F., Mauss, A., Bate, M. and Landgraf, M. (2008) Structural homeostasis: compensatory adjustments of dendritic arbor geometry in response to variations of synaptic input. PLoS Biol, 10, E260.
  • Diegelmann, S., Bate, M. and Landgraf, M. (2008) Gateway cloning vectors for the LexA-based binary expression system in Drosophila. Fly, 2, pp 236-239.
  • Ou, Y., Chwalla, B., Landgraf, M*. and van Meyel, D.J*. (2008) [*joint senior authors]. Identification of genes influencing dendrite morphogenesis in developing peripheral sensory and central motor neurons. Neural Development, 3, 16.
  • Landgraf, M., Jeffrey, V, Fujioka, M., Jaynes, J.B. and Bate, M. (2003) Embryonic Origins of a Motor System: Motor Dendrites Form a Myotopic Map in Drosophila. PLoS Biol 1, E41.
  • Zlatic, M., Landgraf, M. and Bate, M. (2003) Genetic specification of axonal arbors: atonal regulates robo3 to position terminal branches in the Drosophila nervous system. Neuron. 37, pp 41-51.
  • Landgraf, M., Sanchez-Soriano, N., Technau, G.M., Urban, J. and Prokop, A. (2003) Charting the Drosophila neuropile: a strategy for the standardised characterisation of genetically amenable neurites. Dev Biol. 260, pp 207-25.
  • Landgraf, M., Baylies, M. and Bate, M. (1999) Muscle founder cells regulate defasciculation and targeting of motor axons in the Drosophila embryo. Curr.Biol. 9, pp 589-592.
  • Landgraf, M., Roy, S., Prokop, A., VijayRaghavan, K. and Bate, M. (1999) even-skipped determines the dorsal growth of motor axons in Drosophila. Neuron 22, pp 43-52.
  • Landgraf, M., Bossing, T., Technau, G.M. and Bate, M. (1997) The origin, location and projections of the embryonic abdominal motorneurons in Drosophila. J. Neurosci. 17, pp 9642-9655.

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