The Santen group conducts research in the field of nonequilibrium statistical physics.

The focus of interest is the physics of

  • transport processes (traffic, cells),
  • phase transitions in disordered systems,
  • the dynamics of adsorption processes (e.g. protein adsorption on teeth).


Ludger Santen elected as President of Saarland University

Ludger Santen, Professor forr Theoretical Physics (Saarland University) and director of the Center for Biophysics, has been elected to be become the President of Saarland University. His term will start on  April 1, 2024.

Press release of Saarland University from December 1, 2023 (in German).




Adhesiveness of Staphylococcus aureus cells is unevenly distributed across the cell surface
Staphylococcus aureus, a dreaded hospital germ, can cause serious infections. One remarkable characteristic of this bacterium is its extraordinary adhesive ability. A team from the Physics and Medicine departments at Saarland University has now discovered that the germ adheres better to some parts of the envelope than to others. Their study, which has now been published, could be the starting point for more effective bacteria-repellent surfaces.
Press release of Saarland University of 17.10.2023 (in German)

Further News

Vesicles driven by dynein and kinesin exhibit directional reversals without regulators
Intracellular vesicular transport along cytoskeletal filaments ensures targeted cargo delivery. In our recent publication in Nature Communications,  we - together with the group of Stefan Diez (TU Dresden) - demonstrate that a minimal system, comprising purified Dynein-Dynactin-BICD2 (DDB) and kinesin-3 (KIF16B) attached to large unilamellar vesicles, faithfully reproduces in vivo cargo motility, including runs, pauses, and reversals.
Ashwin I. D’Souza, Rahul Grover, Gina A. Monzon, Ludger Santen & Stefan Diez: Vesicles driven by dynein and kinesin exhibit directional reversals without regulators. Nat. Commun. 14, 7532 (2023).