Synaptic transmission and its plasticity are occurring in an environment that contains neurons but also glial cells and extracellular matrix. How this interaction of neurons and astroglia, an abundant subtype of glia cells, determines hippocampal network function is what our research primarily focuses on. Building on our observations of neuron-astroglia interactions in healthy tissue we also explore how disease alters communication between these cell types. The experimental techniques we are mainly using are electrophysiology in its various flavors in combination two-photon excitation fluorescence microscopy of cell structure and intra- and exracellular signalling (e.g. Ca2+, glutamate). This is complemented by analyses often using custom written software (e.g. in Matlab), numerical simulations (e.g. NEURON) and other techniques such as expansion microscopy.
Institute of Cellular Neurosciences
Sigmund Freud Str. 25
Astrocytes are powerful modulators of synaptic transmission and its plasticity. Our research focuses on the mechanisms enabling this astrocyte-neuron communication using combinations of electrophysiology, fluorescence imaging and modelling.