Graduate School of Systemic Neurosciences GSN-LMU

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2 PhD positions

Joint Projects, AG Hauck - AG Grosche


Joint projects of the labs of

Stefanie Hauck, Research Unit Protein Science, Helmholtz Zentrum München

Antje Grosche, Department of Physiological Genomics BioMedical Center – BMC, Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich


We offer two PhD positions for studying regional and functional aspects of heterogeneity in the retinal Müller glial cell population.
Retinal Müller glial cells are the main macroglial cells in the retina and are key to retinal physiology. Profound regional as well as species-dependent heterogeneity in Müller cell populations are obvious but have never been systematically addressed. An important and unique regional specialization is evident in the human macula, a centrally located retinal region harboring mainly cone photoreceptors. This region mediates high resolution daylight and color vision, and shows very high susceptibility to degenerative processes such as age-related macular degeneration of diabetic retinopathy and resulting vision loss is a major burden for the affected individuals.

In the offered PhD projects we will test the hypotheses that central Müller cells are phenotypically different to peripheral Müller cells in murine and porcine animal models as well as in human retina and that these difference are triggered by the differential numbers of cone photoreceptors present in the respective retinal areas. Müller cell phenotype-specific physiology will be studied and related to the spatial degenerative susceptibility observed in disease. We expect to yield valuable data relevant for future studies heading at the development of novel strategies to efficiently treat human retinopathies and macular degeneration in particular.

The projects will be positioned in the interdisciplinary collaborations between the Hauck lab (focus on proteomics and mass spectrometry) and the Grosche lab (focus on physiological characterization) and involve many methods established in both labs.
- Work with transgenic mouse lines (involves breeding, genotyping, inducible cre-lox system)
- Isolate Müller cells from different models/regions (mouse, porcine, human)
- Characterization of Müller cell function using various imaging techniques (calcium imaging, microfluorimetric analysis of cell volume regulation)
- Protein profiling by LC-MSMS and quantitative proteomics (including data analysis)
- AAV-based modulation of in vivo gene expression
- Neurosphere assay for validation of Müller cell stemness features


For further details, please contact 

Dr. Stefanie Hauck
Research Unit Protein Science
Helmholtz Zentrum München
Heidemannstr. 1
80939 München
Tel.: +49 (0) 89 3187-3941

Prof. Dr. Antje Grosche
Department of Physiological Genomics
BioMedical Center - BMC
Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich
Großhaderner Str. 9
82152 Planegg-Martinsried
Tel.: +49 (0) 941 944 5429