Steffen Jung Bio 2024

Born in Homburg/ Saar, Germany, Steffen Jung began his undergraduate studies at the University of Bonn, and then moved to Cologne, where he performed his Ph.D. under the guidance of Andreas Radbruch in the Institute of Genetics headed by Klaus Rajewsky. Specifically, he used the then newly introduced gene targeting technology to define cis-acting control elements driving non-coding ‘sterile’ transcripts in immunoglobulin class switch recombination. In 1993, Steffen moved for post-doctoral training to Israel and joined the laboratory of Yinon Ben-Neriah at the Lautenberg Center (Hebrew University, Jerusalem) studying transcription factors and kinases in T cell signaling. In 1997, Steffen went to New York for a post-doc with Dan Littman at the Skirball Institute for Molecular Pathogenesis, NYU Medical Center. His studies there focused on the chemokine receptor CX3CR1 and its membrane-tethered ligand CX3CL1. Specifically, he generated CX3CR1gfp reporter mice that have become widely used to study murine monocyte subsets and brain macrophages. Furthermore, he developed in collaboration with Richard Lang a novel diphtheria toxin receptor (DTR)-based cell ablation strategy and mouse model that allowed the study of dendritic cells (DC) in their in vivo context (CD11c-DTR mice).

In 2002, Steffen returned to Israel and joined the faculty of the Weizmann Institute, where he received tenure in 2009 and full professorship in 2015. Current work of the Jung lab, located in the Department of Immunology and Regenerative Biology, aims at elucidating in vivo aspects of mononuclear phagocytes, including development and differential functions of monocytes and macrophages. Specifically, the team applies intra-vital imaging, conditional cell and gene ablation, combined with advanced genomic analyses to investigate the biology of these cells in physiological health and disease context. Recent focus is given to the study of blood monocyte subsets, monocyte-derived intestinal and pulmonary macrophages, as well as brain macrophages, including microglia and CNS-border associated macrophages.