You are here: Skip Navigation LinksInstitute of Anatomy Research

Adipose Tissue Inflammation

Stills from two time-lapse moviesGericke             Two time-lapse movies unravel different macrophage behavior.

Image description: Two time-lapse movies unravel fundamentally different clearing behavior of macrophages (red) in adipose tissue. Adipocytes are stained using Bodipy (green).

​Innate immune cells, such as macrophages, degrade dying cells, a process called efferocytosis. Efficient efferocytosis licenses anti-inflammatory removal of aged or damaged cells and is crucial to maintain tissues homeostasis. In adipose tissue (AT), clearing of dead adipocytes seems to be challenging, because hypertrophic adipocytes in obesity can exceed more than 150 µm in diameter, a dimension about 10-fold bigger than regular phagocytes. To investigate the molecular and cellular events following adipocyte death, we have recently established a live-imaging approach allowing us to study adipocyte - macrophage interaction after adipocyte death in living tissue. Hence, we are aiming at determining mechanisms for efficient and inefficient efferocytosis of adipocytes using our live-imaging approach combined with subsequent post-hoc analysis by confocal microscopy or electron microscopy. The combination of these techniques can further determine the molecular interaction between macrophages and dying adipocytes in an unprecedented spatio-temporal resolution.​

Portrait Prof. Gericke ​Prof. Martin Gericke


Phone: +49 341 - 97 22055


  • Dr. rer. nat. Julia Braune
  • Dr.​ rer. nat. Nora Raulien
  • Dr. biol. hum. Janine Fröba
  • Dr. med. Andreas Lindhorst
  • Lilli Arndt, Research Associate
  • Raphaela Wehr, MD Student
  • Constance Hobusch, MTA
  • Andreas Horn, MTA
  • Doreen Sittig, MTA​

Selected publications

Braune JWeyer UHobusch C, Kern M, Kunath A, Klöting N, Kralisch S, Blüher M, Matz-Soja M, Gebhardt R, Zavros Y, Bechmann I, Gericke M (2017) Hedgehog signaling in macrophages impacts on body weight, adipose tissue inflammation and glucose metabolism. Diabetologia. 60(5):889-99.

Braune JWeyer UHobusch C, Mauer J, Brüning JC, Bechmann I, Gericke M (2017) IL-6 regulates local proliferation of adipose tissue macrophages in obesity via up-regulation of the IL-4 receptor alpha. J Immunol. 198(7):2927-34.

du Plessis J, van Pelt J, Korf H, Mathieu C, van der Schueren B, Lannoo M, Oyen T, Topal B, Fetter G, Nayler S, van der Merwe T, Windmolders P, Van Gaal L, Verrijken A, Hubens G, Gericke M, Cassiman D, Francque S, Nevens F, van der Merwe S (2015) Association of Adipose Tissue Inflammation With Histologic Severity of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. Gastroenterology. 149(3):635-48.

Gericke M, Weyer U, Braune J, Bechmann I, Eilers J (2015) A method for long-term live imaging of tissue macrophages in adipose tissue explants. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 308(11):E1023-33.

Haase JWeyer UImmig K, Klöting N, Blüher M, Eilers J, Bechmann I, Gericke M (2014) Local proliferation of macrophages in adipose tissue during obesity-induced inflammation. Diabetologia. 57(3):562-71.

Liebigstraße 13, House A
04103 Leipzig
+49 341 - 97 22000