Hannelore Ehrenreich studied medicine and veterinary medicine in Hanover and Munich, Germany. In parallel to her clinical training in neurology and psychiatry (in Munich and Göttingen) she had several grant-funded research positions in the USA (with Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, NIAID, NIH, Bethesda, MD), England and the Philippines. She is professor of neurology and psychiatry, and adjunct professor of biology and psychology, with teaching responsibilities at the University of Göttingen. She is head of Clinical Neuroscience at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine, Göttingen. Her research area of interest is translational neuroscience with focus on: (1) Molecular-cellular basis of neuropsychiatric diseases, particularly mechanisms of disease and endogenous neuroprotection/neuroregeneration (erythropoietin/EPO variants); (2) Preclinical and clinical research on neuroprotection/neuroregeneration in acute (ischemia/hypoxia, neurotrauma) and chronic diseases (schizophrenia, autism, MS, alcoholism); (3) Phenotype-based genetic association studies (PGAS) as a tool to understand the genotype contribution to (disease) phenotypes.
Martin Begemann studied medicine at the University of Hamburg and upon graduation carried on with basic research in developmental and cell biology as well as signal transduction (Rockefeller University, Columbia University, New York City). In 1996, Martin Begemann began his training as a clinical neurologist (Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York City) with a special emphasis on neuro-oncology (MSKCC, New York City) and was board certified in neurology in 2001 (ABPN). Martin Begemann joined Clinical Neuroscience at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine, Göttingen, in 2004. He recruited and examined several hundred patients for the multicenter schizophrenia cross-sectional study, initiated by the Göttingen Research Association for Schizophrenia (GRAS) as well as patients with bipolar and other affective disorders for phenotype-based genetic association studies (PGAS). In 2012, Martin Begemann was awarded the Venia legendi for clinical neuroscience by the University of Göttingen. He was board certified in neurology (2006) and psychiatry & psychotherapy (2012). Martin Begemann has a special interest in translational neuroscience with particular focus on schizophrenia, affective disorders and autism.
Yasmina Curto studied biology at the University of Valencia, Spain. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree in 2013 and her Master’s degree in Basic and Applied Neurosciences in 2014. She worked as a PhD student in the Neurobiology Department of the Biology Faculty at the University of Valencia in the group of Dr. Juan Nácher. Her PhD focused on the effects that different pharmacological and genetic manipulations produce on the structural plasticity of neurons in the adult and adolescent mouse brain, including those triggered by erythropoietin (EPO) treatment, and the expression of plasticity-related molecules. She gained her doctoral degree in July 2019, qualified with “summa cum laude”, and obtained the European PhD Quality Mention. Since September 2019, Dr. Curto took over a postdoctoral researcher position in the Department of Clinical Neuroscience at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine, Göttingen. Her main interest focuses on the function of EPO in the central nervous system.
Marina Mitjans studied biology at the University of Barcelona, Spain. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree in 2009 and her Master’s degree in Neuroscience in 2011. From 2011 to 2014, she performed her PhD thesis in the Animal Biology Department of the Biology Faculty at the University of Barcelona. Her PhD thesis focused on Psychiatric Pharmacogenetics, in which she investigated genetic variability contributing to differences in clinical response to psychotropic drug treatment. Her PhD dissertation was qualified with “summa cum laude” and obtained the European PhD Quality Mention. In February 2015 she joined Clinical Neuroscience at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine, Göttingen, as an expert in genetic epidemiology of neuropsychiatric disorders. Her main interest focuses on the understanding of the contribution of genetic variability to the complex phenotype of schizophrenia, autism and other severe mental disorders. Having returned to the University of Barcelona (Faculty of Biology, Department of Evolutionary Biology, Ecology and Environmental Sciences) in June 2018, she will continue to keep her joint affiliation with Clinical Neuroscience at the MPIEM and to work on running and planned collaborative projects.
Franziska Scharkowski studied biology at the University of Braunschweig, Germany. Here, she obtained her Bachelor’s degree in 2011 and her Master’s degree in 2013 focusing on cell biology and biochemistry. She worked as PhD student at the Institute of Zoology in the Department of Cellular Neurobiology in the group of Prof. Dr. Martin Korte. She obtained her doctoral degree in December 2016 describing the spine development and activity-dependent plasticity in the hippocampus in a fragile X syndrome mouse model. In 2017 she joined the group of Prof. Dr. Dr. Michael Schmeißer at the Institute of Anatomy following up her research on autism spectrum disorders. Since January 2018, Dr. Scharkowski took over a postdoctoral researcher position in the Department of Clinical Neuroscience at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine, Göttingen. Her main interest focuses on the neuronal function of erythropoietin (EPO) in health and disease.
Liane Wüstefeld studied biochemistry at the University of Halle and Jena. Focusing on molecular medicine, she investigated a mouse model for schizophrenia and obtained her diploma in 2007. From 2008 to 2009 she worked as a doctoral student in neuroanatomy at the Center of Anatomy, University of Göttingen. For her PhD, she joined Clinical Neuroscience at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine in Göttingen and studied the erythropoietin/erythropoietin receptor system in the brain. She defended her PhD in May 2013. Since June 2013 she took over the role of a postdoctoral researcher in Clinical Neuroscience with teaching and supervision responsibilities. Her main interests are the effects of erythropoietin on neural precursor cells and microglia motility as well as the role and nature of the brain erythropoietin receptor.
Ying Zhao studied medicine at Wuhan University, China, where she obtained her bachelor and master degrees. In 2000, she moved to Göttingen, Germany, where she worked as a PhD student in the laboratory of Prof. Reinhard Jahn, Director of the Department of Neurobiology, at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry (MPIBPC). She investigated the role of v-SNARE proteins in exocytosis using transgenic mice. After her PhD defense in 2003, she joined the laboratories of Prof. Geoffrey W.G. Sharp and Prof. Manfred Lindau at Cornell University, USA, where she analyzed the function of SNARE proteins in the process of membrane fusion. In 2013, she returned to MPIBPC in Göttingen to continue her research in the group of Prof. Manfred Lindau. Recently, Dr. Zhao joined Clinical Neuroscience at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine in Göttingen. Dr. Zhao is mainly interested in exploring the brain erythropoietin (EPO) system. Specifically, by using biophysical methods, she investigates how EPO and/or hypoxia influence synaptic transmission and plasticity in the central nervous system.
Project: EPO/hypoxia in the brain – role for cognition
Project: PGAS (phenotype-based genetic association studies) in the extended GRAS data collection
Umer Javed Butt
Project: EPO/hypoxia in the brain – role for cognition
Vinicius Daguano Gastaldi
Project: Phenotype-based genetic association studies in neuropsychiatric diseases
Project: Mouse behavior and higher cognition
Project: Role of erythropoietin and erythropoietin receptor in the central nervous system
Project: The brain EPO/EPOR system
Laura Fernández García-Agudo
Project: Microglia in low grade brain inflammation
Project: The brain EPO/EPOR system
Project: Role of serum autoantibodies directed against brain epitopes for modulating brain functions
Expertise: Lab management, genotyping, PCR, histology
Expertise: Mouse behavior, stereotactic mouse surgery, genotyping, management of mouse breeding, logistics
Expertise: Human inducible pluripotent stem cell lines (IPSC), immunohistochemistry, logistics
Project: GRAS study - environmental risk accumulation - autism
Expertise: Languages (conversation and correspondence), organisation, management
Biochemist, PhD Student
Project: Role of serum autoantibodies directed against NMDAR1 for modulating brain functions
Doctoral Student, Medicine
Project: Erythropoietin receptor in the brain