Possible SARS-CoV-2 mass testing with new technology

June 29, 2020

New Professorship for Functional Immunogenomics at the University Hospital Bonn: Prof. Dr. Jonathan Schmid-Burgk is on the trail of the complex interplay between genes and our immune system. © Rolf Müller / UK Bonn

Luminous proteins in human cells: A human protein is provided with a green fluorescent marker in each cell. The cell membrane is colored red. © Jonathan Schmid-Burgk / Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, UK Bonn


Prof. Dr. Jonathan Schmid-Burgk heads the new working group for "Functional Immunogenomics" at the Institute for Clinical Chemistry and Clinical Pharmacology at the University Hospital Bonn. As part of the newly established professorship and management position, the 34-year-old genome researcher is investigating the complex interplay between genes and our immune system. With the help of robotics and artificial intelligence (AI), he is developing new techniques for protein analysis in living human cells with programmable gene scissors. The aim is to accelerate the modification of the human genome in order to analyze it. Prof. Schmid-Burgk is currently working on a mass test for COVID-19 using the LAMP-Seq process he developed. He brings his new techniques to the Cluster of Excellence ImmunoSensation at the University of Bonn. Following his doctorate, for which he received the doctoral award from the Bonn University Society in 2017, his previous academic career led Prof. Schmid-Burgk to Cambridge (USA). There he spent three and a half years researching at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard - funded by a grant from the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO).