Faculty: Karl Aufderheide2016-12-22T13:46:50+00:00
Karl Aufderheide

Karl Aufderheide

Associate Professor

Fax: 979-845-2891
Email: kauf@bio.tamu.edu

Curriculum Vitae

3258 TAMU
Biological Sciences Building West
Room 101A

Biological Sciences Building West
Room 101


Joined the Department in 1979

  • B.S., 1970, University of Minnesota, Microbiology.
  • M.S., 1972, University of Minnesota, Cell Biology.
  • Ph.D., 1974, University of Minnesota, Cell Biology.
  • Postdoctoral research, Indiana University and University of Iowa.


Cell and Developmental Biology of Paramecium

The protozoan Paramecium tetraurelia possesses many characteristics which make it especially useful for a wide range of cellular and developmental investigations. This lab has studied several important biological problems using species of paramecia as research organisms.

A major project in the laboratory is the study of intracellular pattern formation in paramecia. The cell cortex is an extremely elaborate array of cytoskeletal and membrane components. This complex array must be duplicated each cell cycle. We are investigating the genetic and epigenetic contributions to the formation and maintenance of this complex patterned array. Current specific projects include a detailed investigation of morphogenetic activity in cells bearing cortical inversions and phenotypic documentation of inversions and normal cortex through genetic crosses.

In collaboration with Edward Fry of the Department of Physics, we are also investigating the applications of laser optical force traps (“laser tweezers”) to various biological phenomena in living paramecia. Using focused laser light in a microscope, it is possible to generate precise mechanical forces inside a living cell to trap and reposition small particles, without any apparent damage. During the sexual cycle of paramecia, the locations of nuclei in specific cytoplasmic areas is critical to the determination and later differentiation of those nuclei. We are currently using the laser tweezers to identify the spatial and temporal boundaries of the cytoplasmic determining areas by manipulating the positions of the nuclei during sexual reorganization.

  1. Jiang, X, Hernandez, D, Hernandez, C, Ding, Z, Nan, B, Aufderheide, K et al.. IFT57 stabilizes the assembled intraflagellar transport complex and mediates transport of motility-related flagellar cargo. J. Cell. Sci. 2017;130 (5):879-891. doi: 10.1242/jcs.199117. PubMed PMID:28104816 .
  2. Aufderheide, KJ, Janetopoulos, C. Migration of Dictyostelium discoideum to the Chemoattractant Folic Acid. Methods Mol. Biol. 2016;1407 :25-39. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-3480-5_3. PubMed PMID:27271892 .
  3. Aufderheide, KJ. Refinements of and commentary on the silver staining techniques of Fernández-Galiano. Biotech Histochem. 2016;91 (5):352-6. doi: 10.1080/10520295.2016.1175665. PubMed PMID:27124374 PubMed Central PMC5113713.
  4. Zinskie, JA, Shribak, M, Bruist, MF, Aufderheide, KJ, Janetopoulos, C. A mechanical microcompressor for high resolution imaging of motile specimens. Exp. Cell Res. 2015;337 (2):249-56. doi: 10.1016/j.yexcr.2015.07.011. PubMed PMID:26192819 PubMed Central PMC4696872.
  5. Yan, Y, Jiang, L, Aufderheide, KJ, Wright, GA, Terekhov, A, Costa, L et al.. A microfluidic-enabled mechanical microcompressor for the immobilization of live single- and multi-cellular specimens. Microsc. Microanal. 2014;20 (1):141-51. doi: 10.1017/S1431927613014037. PubMed PMID:24444078 PubMed Central PMC4026272.
  6. Srinivasan, K, Wright, GA, Hames, N, Housman, M, Roberts, A, Aufderheide, KJ et al.. Delineating the core regulatory elements crucial for directed cell migration by examining folic-acid-mediated responses. J. Cell. Sci. 2013;126 (Pt 1):221-33. doi: 10.1242/jcs.113415. PubMed PMID:23132928 PubMed Central PMC3603517.
  7. Aufderheide, KJ. An overview of techniques for immobilizing and viewing living cells. Micron. 2008;39 (2):71-6. doi: 10.1016/j.micron.2006.12.002. PubMed PMID:17251031 .
  8. Cole, ES, Stuart, KR, Marsh, TC, Aufderheide, K, Ringlien, W. Confocal fluorescence microscopy for Tetrahymena thermophila. Methods Cell Biol. 2002;70 :337-59. . PubMed PMID:12512328 .
  9. Janetopoulos, C, Cole, E, Smothers, JF, Allis, CD, Aufderheide, KJ. The conjusome: a novel structure in Tetrahymena found only during sexual reorganization. J. Cell. Sci. 1999;112 ( Pt 7) :1003-11. . PubMed PMID:10198282 .
  10. Riley, BB, Zhu, C, Janetopoulos, C, Aufderheide, KJ. A critical period of ear development controlled by distinct populations of ciliated cells in the zebrafish. Dev. Biol. 1997;191 (2):191-201. doi: 10.1006/dbio.1997.8736. PubMed PMID:9398434 .
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