Persönlicher Status und Werkzeuge


Prof. Dr. Dirk Haller

Chair of Nutrition and Immunology
Technical University Munich
Gregor-Mendel-Str. 2
85350 Freising-Weihenstephan

Tel.: +49 (0) 8161-71 2026
Fax: +49 (0) 8161-71 2824
EMail: dirk.haller [at]


Scientific CV - PDF

1990-1997 Food Technology, University of Hohenheim
1993-1996 Nutrition Science, University of Hohenheim
1996 Diploma in Nutrition Science ’summa cum laude’
1997 Diploma in Food Technology ’summa cum laude’
1999 Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology ’summa cum laude’
’Modulation of the immune response by non-pathogenic bacteria’
1999-2000 Research Scientist at the Nestlé Research Center in Lausanne/Switzerland, Department of Immunology
2001-2002 DFG Emmy Noether research fellow of excellence at the University of North Carolina/USA, Department of Medicine
2003-2006 DFG Emmy Noether group leader of excellence at the Technical University of Munich/Germany
2005 Declined Associate Professorship at University of Alberta, Canada, Department of Medicine
2007 Declined Full Professorship at ETH Zürich, Switzerland, Nutritional Biochemistry (Chair)
2006-2008 Associate Professor (W2) at the Technical University of Munich, Experimental Nutritional Medicine
2008-2012 Full Professor (W3) at the Technical University of Munich, Biofunctionality of Food (Chair)
2007 to date Head of Department, Nutrition and Food Sciences
2013 to date Full Professor (W3) at the Technical University of Munich, Nutrion and Immunology (Chair)
2014 to date Director of the Institute for Food & Health (ZIEL)
2015 Main Award from the German Medical Society (DGHM)

Research Sketch

The main areas of research are dedicated to the understanding of gut health and the pathogenesis of chronic intestinal disorders such as inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) and colorectal cancer (CRC). Nutrition and the intestinal microbiota are prime environmental factors and play a pivotal role in the development of these complex pathologies. The intestinal epithelium provides a large and dynamic interface for the interaction with nutritional and microbial factors and is implemented in the regulation of innate and adaptive immune functions. We hypothesize that nutritional- and microbial-derived signals regulate inflammatory and unfolded protein (cell stress) responses. Intestinal epithelial cells are the predominant cell type of the epithelium with important functions in the immune surveillance of luminal content. Loss of intestinal epithelial cell homeostasis provides the first step towards the development of gut-related chronic disorders. Based on a long-standing interest in mechanisms of microbe-host interactions, we address the following three key questions:
1. What are the mechanisms for the interaction of complex microbial communities (microbiome) and specific non-infectious commensal microorganisms with the host? We hypothesize that dysbiotic microbial ecosystems or the selection of pathobionts lead to the accumulation of aggressive microbial traits leading to the development of IBD and colonic cancer.
2. What is the role of cellular energy homeostasis in the regulation of intestinal tissue development and function? We hypothesize that unfolded protein (cell stress) responses (UPR) of the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria control intestinal stem cell homeostasis and modulate tumorigenesis.
3. What is the role of nutrition on gut-related chronic diseases? We hypothesize that nutritional factors affect inflammatory and tumorigenic processes through reciprocal interaction with the intestinal microbiota and the host.

Selected Honors and Awards:

  • Emmy Noether Career Development Award of Excellence from the German Research Foundation (DFG 2001/2003/2005)
  • German American Frontiers of Science of the National Acadamy of Sciences of America and the Humboldt Foundation (2007, 2008, 2009)
  • Scientific chair of the European Science Foundation (ESF) Forward Look initiative – Gene environment interaction in chronic disease (2010 and 2011)
  • Section President „Microbiota, Probiota and Host” (2008 – 2011) of the German Society of Microbiology and Hygiene (DGHM)
  • ERC Review Panel Consolidator Grants (2013)

Head of Coordinated Research Programs:

  • German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), Coordinated Research for Innovation in Food Science (2009-2014), Impact of high fat diet on gut functions and metabolic disorders (1.3 Mio €)
  • German Research Foundation (DFG), PhD Training Program GRK 1482 (2011-2015), Interface function of the intestine between luminal factors and host signals (2.3 Mio €)
  • German Research Foundation (DFG), Priority Program SPP 1656 (2012-2018), Intestinal Microbiota: a microbial ecosystem at the edge between immune homeostasis and inflammation (16 Mio €)


  • Basics in Immunology
  • Biofunctionality of Food
  • Nutrition and microbe-host interaction
  • Experimental Immunology
  • Clinical Chemistry

Selected Memberships:

  • Society for Microbiology and Hygiene
  • European Network of Excellence on Nutrigenomics
  • Member of the reviewer Committee of the Leibniz Society
  • Member of the BMBF Road Map Committee
  • German American Frontiers of Science at the National Acadamy of Sciences
  • ILSI Expert Group on Probiotics
  • ILSI Expert Group on Biomarkers of Inflammation