Graduate School of Systemic Neurosciences GSN-LMU

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Ozgun Gokce, Ph.D.

GSN associate faculty


Research Group Leader at the Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research

Single-cell genomics core for Munich Cluster of Systems Neurology (SyNergy) and TRR 274: Checkpoints of Central Nervous System Recovery


Institut für Schlaganfall- und Demenzforschung (ISD)
Klinikum der Universität München
Feodor-Lynen-Straße 17
D-81377 München

Phone: +49 (0)89 4400 – 46142
Fax: +49 (0)89 4400 – 46148


Further Information

Research focus: 

1. Role of white matter and cerebrovascular aging in neurodegeneration
White matter volume starts to decrease gradually from 50 years of age onwards. Electron microsco-py studies performed in non-human primates have shown that the major changes observed during normal aging are not a loss of neurons, but rather changes in myelinated nerve fiber morphology. Our single-cell RNA-seq work showed that aging results in microglial activation in the white matter. We propose that age-related gliovascular changes induce myelin damage, which in turn affects mi-croglia function in the white matter. Our group focuses on understanding how age-related gliovas-cular changes form and lead to the development neurodegenerative diseases.

2. Emerging Roles of cytokines in neurological diseases
We are studying cytokines functions in the brain. We are testing if targeting modulating cytokines functions is a viable therapeutic strategy for neurodegenerative disorders.

System biology, genomics, spatial and single cell transcriptomics, microglia, synapse

Graduated: Tugberk Kaya, Simon Besson-Girard

Selected publications:

  • Safaiyan S., Besson-Girard S., et al., Gokce O.*, Simons M. * (2021) Generation of white-matter associated microglia during brain aging. Neuron 109, 1–18
  • Kontos C., .,..., Gokce O. et al., (2020) Designed CXCR4 mimic acts as a soluble chemokine receptor that blocks atherogenic inflammation by agonist-specific targeting. Nature Communications. 11, Article number: 5981
  • Cantuti-Castelvetri, L., Ojha, R.,..., Gokce O. et al., (2020) Neuropilin-1 facilitates SARS-CoV-2 cell entry and provides a possible pathway into the central nervous system. Science eabd298
  • Stanley G.*, Gokce O.*, Malenka R.C., Südhof T.C., and Quake S.R., (2020) Discrete and Continuous Cell Identities of the Adult Murine Striatum. Neuron 105 (4), 688-699. e8
  • Chen L.Y., Jiang M., Zhang B., Gokce O., and Sudhof T.C., (2017) Conditional Deletion of All Neurexins Defines Diversity of Essential Synaptic Organizer Functions for Neurexins. Neuron 94 (3), 611-625. e4.
  • Zhang B., Seigneur E., Wei P., Gokce O., Morgan J., and Sudhof T.C., (2016) Developmental plasticity shapes synaptic phenotypes of autism-associated neuroligin-3 mutations in the calyx of Held. Molecular Psychiatry 00, 1–9.
  • Gokce O.*, Stenley G.*, Treutlein B*., Neff N.F., Camp G.J., Malenka R.C., Rothwell P.E., Fuccillo M.V., Südhof T.C., and Quake S.R., (2016) Cellular Taxonomy of the Mouse Striatum as Revealed by Single-Cell RNAseq. Cell Reports 16, 1–12
  • Fuccillo M.*, Foldy C.*, Gokce O.*, Rothwell P.E., Sun G.L., Robert C.M. and Südhof T.C., (2015) Single-Cell mRNA Profiling Reveals Cell-Type-Specific Expression of Neurexin Isoforms. Neuron 87, 326–340.
  • Rothwell P.E., Fuccillo M.V., Maxeiner S., Hayton S.J., Gokce O., Lim B.K., Fowler S.C., Malenka R.C., and Südhof T.C., (2014) Autism-Associated Neuroligin-3 Mutations Common-ly Impair Striatal Circuits to Boost Repetitive Behaviors. Cell; 158(1):198–212.
  • Treutlein B*., Gokce O.*, Quake S.R., and Südhof T.C., (2014) Cartography of Neurexin Diversity Mapped by Single-Molecule Long-Read mRNA Sequencing. PNAS 111 (13) E1291-E1299;
  • Gokce O., & Südhof T.C., (2013) Membrane-Tethered Monomeric Neurexin LNS-Domain Triggers Synapse Formation, Journal of Neuroscience, 33(36), 14617–14628