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Institute of Physiology and Pathophysiology

Research Areas

Using skeletal muscle and neuronal preparations for the development of highly sensitive methods, we are seeking to expand state of the art technology in physical and biophysical sciences to the application in basic medical research.

The techniques used by our group include microscopic fluorescence imaging techniques such as, e.g., confocal/multiphoton imaging, ratiometric wide field fluorescence microscopy, microscopic laser application such as, e.g., UV-laser microdissection and IR-optical tweezers, patch clamp and several other voltage clamp techniques, mathematical modelling of cellular and subcellular dynamic processes, and basic image processing techniques especially for studying dynamic processes.

With the help of this broad spectrum of sensitive techniques many clinical relevant questions can be studied in its molecular origins. For example the investigations on Duchenne muscular dystrophy are utilizing the patch-clamp method and the various approaches for determining the total intracellular calcium turnover in diseased single muscle fibers.

The effects of volatile anaesthetics on the contractile proteins of skeletal and heart muscles, as well as on the ryanodine receptors can be ideally studied using permeabilised muscle fibres, with the contractile force and the calcium turnover as very sensitive indicators of cellular and subcellular effects of volatile anaesthetics.

The research projects of the group are embedded in a network of national and international cooperations, which further expand the interdisciplinary approaches of our research topics. This includes collaborative projects in molecular biology, biotechnology and physical chemistry.

24.10.2017       13:30   /   INF 327, Seminar Room 1


Hypoxia and uterine contractions: Something old and something new

Prof. Dr. Susan Wray

Dept. of Cellular and Molecular Physiology, University of Liverpool, United Kingdom


24.10.2017       18:00   /   INF 410 (Med. Clinic), Auditorium


Calcium in the heart: in and out of control

Prof. Dr. David Eisner

Manchester Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing, University of Manchester, United Kingdom

(seminar of Heidelberg University Hospital and German Center for Cardiovascular Disease (DZHK); host: Prof. Dr. M. Hecker, Inst. of Physiology and Pathophysiology, Heidelberg University)


Recent Publications


AP-1 Oligodeoxynucleotides Reduce Aortic Elastolysis in a Murine Model of Marfan Syndrome. Mol Ther Nucleic Acids. 2017 Dec 15; 9: 69–79. Epub 2017 Sep 20. doi: 10.1016/j.omtn.2017.08.014


Allosteric inhibition of carnosinase (CN1) by inducing a conformational shift. J Enzyme Inhib Med Chem. 2017 Dec;32(1):1102-1110. doi: 10.1080/14756366.2017.1355793.


Transcription factor decoy technology: a therapeutic update. Biochem Pharmacol. 2017 Nov 15;144:29-34. doi: 10.1016/j.bcp.2017.06.122. Epub 2017 Jun 19. Review.


Subtype-specific differentiation of cardiac pacemaker cell clusters from human induced pluripotent stem cells. Stem Cell Res Ther. 2017 Oct 16;8(1):229. doi: 10.1186/s13287-017-0681-4.


Heteromeric channels formed by TRPC1, TRPC4 and TRPC5 define hippocampal synaptic transmission and working memory. EMBO J. 2017 Sep 15;36(18):2770-2789. doi: 10.15252/embj.201696369. Epub 2017 Aug 8


NO-sGC Pathway Modulates Ca2+ Release and Muscle Contraction in Zebrafish Skeletal Muscle. Front Physiol. 2017 Aug 23;8:607. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2017.00607. eCollection 2017.

Institute of
Physiology and Pathophysiology

Heidelberg University

Im Neuenheimer Feld 326

69120 Heidelberg


Phone:+49 6221 54-4056
Fax:+49 6221 54-6364