Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics

Professor Dr. Martin Vingron

Ihnestraße 63-73

14195 Berlin


Martin Vingron

Header image 1533906441

Professor Dr. Martin Vingron


Scientific member, director


  • (030) 8413 1150


  • +49 30 8413-1152




Martin Vingron is a mathematician by education who has done his PhD in computational biology at EMBL in 1991. At the time and for a number of years of postdoctoral training his research has focused on the analysis of protein sequences, sequence analysis, sequence comparison, and molecular evolution. Methods of discrete optimisation were used for the design of comparison algorithms and probability theory was applied to answer questions of significance of computational results. Later, as a department head at the German Cancer Research Center, his focus shifted towards the processing and mathematical analysis of DNA microarrays. Accordingly, the methods largely drew on statistical data analysis techniques. During the last years his research interest lies in utilizing gene expression data as well as evolutionary data for the elucidation of gene regulatory mechanisms. He also acts as a member of the RECOMB (Research in Computational Molecular Biology) steering committee.

Research Interests

Computational molecular biology with a special focus on

  • biological sequence analysis
  • sequence comparison
  • phylogeny reconstruction
  • genome analysis
  • microarray data analysis
  • transcriptional regulation
  • Development of algorithms and statistical methods for molecular biology

Education and Professional Experience

  • since 10/2000: Scientific Member of the Max Planck Society and Director of the Department of Computational Molecular Biology at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, Berlin
  • 09/06-06/15: Interim Director at the CAS-MPG Partner Institute for Computational Biology, Shanghai
  • 10/95-09/00: Head of Division [Wissenschaftlicher Abteilungsleiter]of Theoretical Bioinformatics, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg
  • 09/93-09/95: Postdoc at the German National Research Center for Computer Science (GMD), Institute for Algorithms and Scientific Computing (SCAI)
  • 07/91-08/93: Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Department of Mathematics, Mathematical Biology Laboratory, University of Southern California
  • 1987-1991: Predoctoral Fellow at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) Biocomputing Programme
  • 1986-87: Computer Specialist at the Center for Molecular Biology (ZMBH), University of Heidelberg (computing for molecular biology, taking care of hardware and software)
  • 1985-86: Software Engineer at I.P. Sharp Associates, Vienna, Austria
  • 1991 Doctorate in Mathematics, University of Heidelberg and EMBL, Germany
  • 1985 Diploma in Mathematics, University of Vienna, Austria

Awards and Memberships

  • 2014: named among the Thomson-Reuters Highly Cited Researchers
  • 2014: Elected member of the Academia Europaea
  • 2012: Elected fellow of the International Society for Computational Biology
  • 2004: Max Planck Research Award for International Cooperation ("Max Planck Forschungspreis") in Bioinformatics (together with Gene Myers)
  • 2004: Elected member of the German Academy of Natural Scientists Leopoldina
  • 2001: Awarded Honorary Professor, Freie Universität Berlin, Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
  • 2000: Scientific Member of the Max-Planck-Society

Selected Publications

Göke J, Jung M, Behrens S, Chavez L, O'Keeffe S, Timmermann B, Lehrach H, Adjaye J, Vingron M.Combinatorial binding in human and mouse embryonic stem cells identifies conserved enhancers active in early embryonic development.
PLoS Comput Biol.2011 Dec;7(12):e1002304. Epub 2011 Dec 22.

Thomas-Chollier M, Hufton A, Heinig M, O'Keeffe S, Masri NE, Roider HG, Manke T,Vingron M. Transcription factor binding predictions using TRAP for the analysis of ChIP-seq data and regulatory SNPs.
Nat Protoc. 2011 Nov 3;6(12):1860-9.

Manke T, Heinig M, Vingron M. Quantifying the effect of sequence variation on regulatory interactions.
Hum Mutat. 2010 Apr;31(4):477-83.

Karlić R, Chung HR, Lasserre J, Vlahovicek K, Vingron M. Histone modification levels are predictive for gene expression.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2010 Feb 16;107(7):2926-31. Epub 2010 Feb 1.

Roider HG, Lenhard B, Kanhere A, Haas SA, Vingron M. CpG-depleted promoters harbor tissue-specific transcription factor binding signals--implications for motif overrepresentation analyses.
Nucleic Acids Res. 2009 Oct;37(19):6305-15.

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