TUM – Technical University of Munich Menü

Prof. Dr. Brigitte Poppenberger

Academic Career and Research Areas

Prof. Poppenberger (*1973) investigates how plant growth and development is regulated. In particular she is interested in the function and modes of action of the plant steroid hormones brassinosteroids, which regulate endogenous developmental programs and moreover also confer plants an adaptive potential to environmental factors and changes. The goal of her research is to elucidate which molecular and biochemical processes underlie BR action, and to make the gained knowledge applicable for the breeding and production of horticultural crops.
Prof. Poppenberger studied Agriculture specializing in Horticulture at the University for Renewable Resources and Applied Life Sciences in Vienna. Following her Ph.D. studies in plant molecular biology she spent a three-year postdoctoral research stay at the 'Center for Novel Agricultural Products' of the University of York, United Kingdom. In 2006 she founded an independent research group at the Centre for Molecular Biology of the University of Vienna, before she accepted a professorship at the TUM in 2011.


  • Hertha-Firnberg Stipendium des Österreichischen Wissenschaftsfonds (2006)
  • Erwin Schrödinger Stipendium des Österreichischen Wissenschaftsfonds (2003)
  • Agrana Forschungsförderungspreis (2003)
  • DOC Stipendium der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften (2000)

Key Publications

Eremina M, Unterholzner S, Rozhon W, Kugler KG, Castellanos M, Ratnajaka A, Khan M, May S, Mayer KM, Poppenberger B: "Brassinosteroids contribute to the control of basal and acquired freezing tolerance in plants". Proc Nat Acad Sci USA. 2016; 113(40): E5982-E5991.


Unterholzner S, Rozhon W, Papacek M, Lange T, Kugler KG, Mayer KM, Sieberer T, Poppenberger B: "Brassinosteroids Are Master Regulators of Gibberellin Biosynthesis in Arabidopsis". Plant Cell. 2015; 27: 2261-2272.


Khan M, Rozhon W, Unterholzner SJ, Chen T, Eremina M, Wurzinger B, Bachmair A, Teige M, Sieberer T, Isono E, Poppenberger B: Interplay between phosphorylation and SUMOylation events determines CESTA protein fate in brassinosteroid signalling". Nature Communic. 2014; 5: 4687.


Poppenberger B, Rozhon W, Khan M, Husar S, Adam G, Luschnig C, Fujioka S and Sieberer T: CESTA a positive regulator of brassinosteroid biosynthesis. EMBO J. 2011; 30(6): 1149-1161


Poppenberger B, Fujioka S, Sueno K., George G.L, Vaistij F.E, Seto H, Hiranuma S, Takastuto S, Adam G, Yoshida S and Bowles D: The UGT73C5 of Arabidopsis thaliana glucosylates brassinosteroids. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. USA. 2005; 102(42): 15253-15258