Projects

Our goal is to understand the role of glial cells in physiology and pathology. We focus on questions as to how neuronal activity is sensed by astrocytes, how astrocytes communicate among each other, and how they feedback on neurons. A second focus addresses the role of connexin proteins in oligodendrocytes function, the cells which are the myelin forming cells in the brain. Thirdly, we study the expression of transmitter receptors in microglial cells and how activation of these receptors influences microglial function. This is of particular interest within the context of pathology and we are currently studying this question in stroke and gliomas. A fourth line of research addresses the question as to how glioma cells interact with the intrinsic brain cells, specifically microglia and stem cells. We are aiming to understand this interaction on a molecular level, in particular with the hope of identifying tools which impair glioma invasion.