12-14 September 2021

IZN Retreat


20(+1) years of the IZN.


Location: Kloster Schöntal


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 Izn Logo Kloster Schoental

IZN Annual Retreat 2021

Open for registration

Dear Colleagues, this year’s annual IZN Retreat will celebrate 20 (+1) Years  of the Interdisciplinary Center for Neurosciences. We hope to see all of you there, so mark your calendars and register soon!

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IZN Calls for 2021 Awards Nominations Externer Inhalt

Insight into the pathology of IgG4-associated diseases

IgG4-related diseases (IgG4-RD) are considered systemic diseases: they can affect virtually all organs and tissues of the body. Inflammation and tumor-like swellings (pseudotumors) in the affected tissues, which tend to scar, are typical of autoimmune diseases. They are caused by special antibody-producing cells of the immune system, immunoglobulin G4-producing B cells, which migrate into the tissues and multiply there. In rare cases, the brain may also be affected, causing severe neurological symptoms. The development of IgG4-related diseases is still poorly understood.

A research team led by Dr. med. Dr. rer. nat. Lukas Bunse, assistant physician at the Department of Neurology and team leader in the Clinical Cooperation Unit Neuroimmunology and Brain Tumor Immunology at the DKFZ, found that special T cells, which play a role in the formation of immunological memory, fuel the inflammatory process through an undesired interaction with immature B cells and cytotoxic T helper cells and possibly even initiate it.

Platten MichaelFor the scientists, this discovery alone is not the only cause for celebration: "The fact that we can also apply the platform developed in recent years to rare neurological and autoimmunological diseases is an extremely exciting prospect," explains Professor Dr. Michael Platten, Director of the Department of Neurology and Head of the Clinical Cooperation Unit Neuroimmunology and Brain Tumor Immunology at DKFZ. "The platform is actually used to characterize immune receptors, based on single-cell sequencing and transcriptome analysis. The specificity of T-cell receptors and their applicability for therapy in the context of tumor diseases or autoimmunity is a particular focus." More...Externer Inhalt

Grinevich ValeryECNP Neuropsychopharmacology Award goes to Valery Grinevich for his exceptional research contributions to the study of neuropeptides

The European College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ECNP) is pleased to announce Valery Grinevich as the recipient of the 2021 ECNP Neuropsychopharmacology Award, in recognition of his outstanding achievements in advancing the knowledge of neuropeptide signalling in the brain. The ECNP Neuropsychopharmacology Award is presented annually and recognises distinguished research in applied and translational neuroscience.

Among his landmark scientific contributions is the discovery that the axonal release of neuropeptides, exemplarily shown for oxytocin, contributes to neuropeptide signalling in the brain, thereby extending a long-standing dogma of passive diffusion of peptides from the source of origin throughout the entire brain. In support of this concept, his team has successfully demonstrated the existence of an oxytocin engram of fear memory, with specific oxytocin circuits transmitting noxious and non-noxious stimuli into pain and social behaviours, respectively. More...Externer Inhalt

How “paralyzed” immune cells can be reactivated against brain tumors

Brain tumor cells with a certain common mutation reprogram invading immune cells. This leads to the paralysis of the body's immune defense against the tumor in the brain. Researchers from Heidelberg, Mannheim, and Freiburg discovered this mechanism and at the same time identified a way of reactivating the paralyzed immune system to fight the tumor. These results confirm that therapeutic vaccines or immunotherapies are more effective against brain tumors if active substances are simultaneously used to promote the suppressed immune system.

Diffuse gliomas are usually incurable brain tumors that spread in the brain and are difficult to completely remove by surgery. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy often only have a limited effect too. Oncologists are thus urgently trying to find innovative treatment approaches to fight the gliomas using the immune system – by means of therapeutic vaccines or immunotherapies.

Platten Michael"If we are to make progress in developing immunotherapies or therapeutic vaccines, we need to understand exactly how the immune environment behaves during tumor development. Moreover, we were interested in whether special genetic features of the gliomas have a particular influence on the function of the glioma-associated immune cells," explained Michael Platten, Director of the Department of Neurology of University Medicine Mannheim, Head of Division at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), and director of the current study. More... Externer Inhalt

Alzheimer Protein APP Regulates Learning and Social Behaviour in the Healthy Brain

MuellerBeyond plaques: Heidelberg scientists unravel the natural functions of the APP protein family

While the APP protein is well-known for its key role in Alzheimer’s disease, its contribution to healthy brain function, by contrast, has remained largely unknown until now. Recently, an international research team, led by molecular biologist Prof.Dr. Ulrike Müller from Heidelberg University, gained new insights on the physiological functions of the APP protein family by using a mouse model lacking APP. The absence of APP during brain development was shown to result in the malformation of important brain regions implicated in learning and memory. Consequently, these mice were severely impaired in their learning abilities and exhibited autistic-like behaviour. More...Externer Inhalt


Open positions at the IZN

  • The Department of Functional Neuroanatomy (Director: Prof. Dr. Thomas Kuner) offers a DFG-funded PhD position in Cellular and Systemic Neuroscience. The project aims at understanding the role of cortico-thalamo-cortical communication in the somatosensory system. Adobe
    Posted 07.2021

  • The Division of Neurodegeneration, Medical Faculty Mannheim (Prof. Dr. Jochen Weishaupt) is offering two PhD student positions to investigate molecular mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases and develop new therapeutic targets. Adobe
    Posted 04.2021

  • The research group of Dr. Kevin Allen is seeking a PhD student to work on the neuronal basis of spatial behavior. The student will use various techniques to study system neuroscience, including in vivo recordings from modern electrode arrays in mice, optogenetics, behavioral testing, analysis of large databases. Adobe
    Posted 02.2021




Managing Director:
Prof. Dr. Hilmar Bading
IZN-Neurobiology, University of Heidelberg
Im Neuenheimer Feld 366, 1.OG
D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany


Phone:  +49 - 6221 - 54 16500
Fax:  +49 - 6221 - 54 16524
email:  Bading@nbio.uni-heidelberg.de




Coordinator IZN and IZN PhD Programme:
Dr. Otto Bräunling
IZN-Neurobiology, University of Heidelberg
Im Neuenheimer Feld 366, 1.OG
D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany


Phone:  +49 - 6221 - 54 16502
Fax:  +49 - 6221 - 54 16524
email:  Braeunling@nbio.uni-heidelberg.de




Administration & Information:
Frau Antje König
IZN-Neurobiology, University of Heidelberg
Im Neuenheimer Feld 366, 1.OG
D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany


Phone:  +49 - 6221 - 54 16501
Fax:  +49 - 6221 - 54 16524
email:  Sekretariat@nbio.uni-heidelberg.de



Webmaster contact: WebmasterIZN@uni-heidelberg.de
Latest Revision: 2021-07-28
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