Dr. Jingjing Xu, PostDoc


Prof. Dr. Henrik Mouritsen

AG Neurosensorik/Animal Navigation

Institut für Biologie und Umweltwissenschaften (IBU)
Carl-von-Ossietzky-Universität Oldenburg

Carl-von-Ossietzky-Straße 9-11
26129 Oldenburg

Telefon: +49 (0) 441 798 3081
              +49 (0) 441 798 3095

Dr. Jingjing Xu, PostDoc

Jingjing Xu, PostDoc

Personal Data

Address: AG Neurosensorik/Animal Navigation, IBU

Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg

Carl-von-Ossietzky-Strasse 9-11,

D-26129 Oldenburg


Born 1991 in Shandong, China

Tel: +49 0441 798 3180


Google Scholar Entry: scholar.google.de/citations?hl=de&user=-UD8k-UAAAAJ

First author of a Nature paper (cover story)

Mother of a 2-year-old daughter


Major Academic Achievements

Within international collaboration, she and her worldwide colleagues experimentally validated the radical-pair mechanism of animal magnetoreception. They found Cryptochrome 4 from the nightmigratory European robin displays magnetically sensitive photochemistry in vitro, in which four successive flavin–tryptophan radical pairs generate magnetic-field effects and stabilize potential signaling states. This discovery has a strong impact on the emerging new field of “quantum biology”. It was published as a cover story in the Nature journal on 24th June 2021.

Current position

01. September 2022 - present Postdoctoral researcher, University of Oldenburg

Funded by ERC Synergy grant ‘QuantumBirds’  


18. April. 2018 – 31. August. 2022

Doctoral study at the Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg, Germany.

Thesis: Experimental validation on the radical pair mechanism of avian magnetoreception in cryptochrome 4 proteins. (Summa cum laude)


01. September. 2015 – 13. June. 2018

Ph.D. candidate at the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, China. Undergraduate

Project: Investigation of the animal magnetoreception mechanism in cryptochrome 4 protein (I terminated this program because I got the unique chance to work with the two world-leading labs in the field in Oldenburg and Oxford instead)


01. September. 2012 – 01. June. 2015

Master student, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, China. Passed with great distinction

Thesis: Molecular cloning and spatiotemporal expression analysis of cryptochrome genes in wing

dimorphic brown planthopper (Nilaparvata lugens)


13. September. 2008 – 01. July. 2012

Bachelor student, Shandong Institute of Physical Education, China. Passed with distinction

Majored in Kinesiology.

Honors & Awards

2022 Chinese government award for outstanding self-finance students abroad (6000 USD)

2021   Short presentation award in the Fourth International Forum Quantum Metrology and Sensing

2021   DAAD-Prize 2021 for the outstanding achievement of a foreign student

2016   Joint PhD Training Program Scholarship in University of Chinese Academy of Sciences

2014   National Scholarship for Graduate Students (for Top 10% students)

2013   The Honorary Title of Merit Students in University of Chinese Academy

2012   College Scholarships in University of Chinese Academy of Sciences


-    Molecular biology: Gene cloning, RACE, qPCR, RNAi, 

-    Biochemistry: Affinity Chromatography, Anion exchange Chromatography

-    Microinjection, confocal and electron microscopy, animal handle

-    Bioinformation: BioEdit, DNAMAN, Beacon Designer, Primer Premier

-    Drawing: GraphPad, Origin, Solidworks


1. Jingjing Xu, Lauren Jarocha, Tilo Zollitsch, et al., (2021) Magnetic sensitivity of cryptochrome 4 from a migratory songbird. Nature. 594(7864), 535-540

2. Daniel C Lünemann, Anitta R Thomas, Jingjing Xu, et al. Distinguishing between coherent and incoherent signals in excitation-emission spectroscopy[J]. Optics Express, 2021, 29(15): 24326-24337

3. Rabea Bartölke, Heide Behrmann, Katharina Görtemaker, Chad Yee, Jingjing Xu, et al., The secrets of cryptochromes: photoreceptors, clock proteins, and magnetic sensors. Neuroforum 27.3 (2021): 151-157.

4. Jingjing Xu, Yingchao Zhang, Jianqi Wu, et al. (2019) Molecular characterization, spatial-temporal expression and magnetic response patterns of the iron-sulfur cluster assembly1 (IscA1) in rice planthopper, Nilaparvata lugen[J]. Insect Science.26(3):413-423    

5. Jingjing Xu, Wei Pan, Yingchao Zhang, et al. (2017) Behavioral evidence for a magnetic sense in the oriental armyworm, Mythimna separata. Biology Open, 6(3), 340-347

6. Dmitry Kobylkov, Joe Wynn, Michael Winklhofer, Raisa Chetverikova, Jingjing Xu, et al. Electromagnetic 0.1–100 kHz noise does not disrupt orientation in a night-migrating songbird implying a spin coherence lifetime of less than 10 µs. Journal of the Royal Society Interface 16.161 (2019): 20190716.

7. Jingjing Xu, Guijun Wan, Dingbang Hu, et al. (2016). Molecular characterization, tissue and developmental expression profiles of cryptochrome genes in wing dimorphic brown planthoppers, Nilaparvata lugens. Insect Science, 23(6), 805-818.

8. Weidong Pan, Guijun Wan, Jingjing Xu, et al. (2016). Evidence for the presence of biogenic magnetic particles in the nocturnal migratory brown planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens. Scientific Reports, 6.

9. Guijun Wan, Shoulin Jiang, Zongchao Zhao, Jingjing Xu, et al. (2014). Bio-effects of near-zero magnetic fields on the growth, development and reproduction of small brown planthopper, Laodelphax striatellus and brown planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens. Journal of Insect Physiology, 68, 7-15. 

10. Guijun Wan, Wenjing Wang, Jingjing Xu, et al. (2015). Cryptochromes and hormone signal transduction under near-zero magnetic fields: New clues to magnetic field effects in a rice planthopper. PloS ONE, 10(7), e0132966.


2018 – 2022 DAAD Graduate School Scholarship Programme

2016 – 2017 Joint Ph.D. Training Program Scholarship at the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences

(Stand: 01.06.2023)  |