© CiM - Peter Grewer

Interview series: A lab visit to ...

Interviews with the CiM researchers

Researchers in our network deal with the question of how cells move and behave in the body and imaging methods play an important role here. But what exactly do the scientists investigate? Which techniques are they excited about? And what moves them beyond their own research topic?

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© WWU/T. Hauss

“My lab is in my mind”

Mathematician Prof. Angela Stevens understands mathematics and biology as equal partners. She contributes to the explanation and prediction of biological phenomena with the aid of mathematics. One example is the role of cell motility in developmental processes.

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© CiM / Foto: E. Wibberg

“Luminescence is a fascinating phenomenon”

Prof. Cristian A. Strassert is fascinated by the interaction between light and matter. As new Professor of Coordination Chemistry and Molecular Imaging in the Cells-in-Motion cluster of excellence, he is, among other things, developing strategies designed to fight diseases with the aid of light.

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© WWU/Peter Grewer

“Research is not an end in itself”

Prof. Stephan Ludwig investigates how viruses get into a cell, multiply and, as a result, make entire organisms ill. His greatest wish is that one day new treatments to tackle viral diseases will be developed on the basis of his research.

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© WWU/Peter Grewer

“I’m fascinated by the brain’s mystery“

One lifetime is not enough to answer the question of how the brain functions as a whole. So Prof. Jürgen Klingauf studies the smallest parts of the brain, the synapses in nerve cells. His aim is to produce artificial synapses in order to form neural networks.

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© MPI Münster

“I’m still driven by curiosity”

Blood vessels are Prof. Ralf Adams’ great interest in his research. He is studying how they are formed, how they interact with tissue and how they influence bone growth. His great wish is to be able to transfer his findings to diseases models.

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© WWU/Thomas Hauss

“Research means solving riddles”

Prof. Roland Wedlich-Söldner investigates the dynamics and organization of cells. Using modern light microscopes, he watches them “live” at work. He enjoys science because it never runs out of fascinating questions.

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© EIMI/M. Kuhlmann

“Failure is not an option”

Prof. Friedemann Kiefer investigates how lymphatic vessels are formed and preserved. In his work, though, he constantly looks beyond the boundaries of his own field to develop new ideas. His overall aim is to make contributions of lasting value.

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© Witte / Wattendorf

“I do research to help people see”

Prof. Nicole Eter works as an ophthalmologist and, parallel to this, investigates what mechanisms are at work behind diseases of the retina. Her great aim is to develop new forms of treatment and she is fascinated by processes which can stop cells ageing.

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© WWU/Peter Leßmann

“We do research to benefit patients”

Prof. Johannes Roth is investigating the causes of inflammatory reactions. For many years he worked as a basic researcher and a paediatrician at the same time. His greatest aim is to discover basic mechanisms which can lead to diagnostic or therapeutic processes.

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© WWU/Dziemba

“Sigma receptors are pretty unusual!”

Prof. Bernhard Wünsch is passionate about Medicinal Chemistry. He is investigating novel receptor ligands. Furthermore, he aims to support junior researchers. His happiest moment as a scientist was the appointment of one of his habilitands to get a professorship.

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“Will we be able to predict heart attacks one day?”

Prof. Michael Schäfers is fascinated by the possibilities offered by positron emission tomography, which enables to visualize molecular processes inside the body. With the help of this technology he would like to show inflammatory processes, e.g. to predict future heart attacks.

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“We do research to cure cancer in children and adolescents”

Pediatrician Prof. Claudia Rössig is convinced of the chances for the immunotherapeutic treatment of children with cancer. Her research group is aiming to modify patients’ T cells in such a way that they can systematically recognize or destroy cancer cells in solid tumours, or at least keep them in check.

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© WWU/Jean-Marie Tronquet

“Together, we can understand the big picture”

Dr. Britta Trappmann develops engineered tissue models for research into the growth of blood vessels. Other scientists are already showing an interest in her platforms. The reason is that they can then study angiogenesis in 3D in a very well controlled environment.

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© WWU/Sylwia Marschalkowski

“The way bones heal is fascinating”

Trauma surgeon Prof. Richard Stange investigates how bones heal. As a Professor of Translational Regenerative Medicine, he combines basic research with clinical work. His aim is that research results should always benefit the patient as far as possible.

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© WWU/Heiner Witte

“Science is like a jigsaw puzzle”

As a scientist Dr. Sebastian Rumpf likes to probe into questions that he finds interesting. He studies how neuronal extensions atrophy. One of his main aims is to impart to other people the pleasure he derives from his research work.

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© WWU/Michael Kuhlmann

“I like to look at questions from new angles”

What allows a cell migrate from A to B? This is something that Prof. Erez Raz would like to find out. In doing so, he likes to try out new paths and always likes being surprised. And there is one thing he is sure about: it is the combination of various fields that characterizes good science.

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© WWU/Peter Grewer

“My job isn’t ‘work’ – it’s my life!”

Prof. Christian Klämbt is a scientist heart and soul. He studies glial cells, one of the main components of the brain. His overriding aim is to understand how the brain and all its wonders work. But he also knows that this is an aim that cannot be reached easily.

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© André Stephan

“We give meaning to biomedical images”

Prof. Xiaoyi Jiang is developing methods of producing and analysing biomedical images. These new methods make it possible to track the movement of individual cells or even entire organisms. For Prof. Jiang it is especially important to develop elegant methods which work for a whole range of applications.

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© UKM/FZ

“I want to find out how sperm locate the egg”

After working in the pharmaceuticals industry for a few years, Prof. Timo Strünker opted for science in the academic world. He is now undertaking research into the navigation skills of sperms – and he knows that we humans have a lot in common with sea urchins.

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© UKM/FZ

“Every single experiment has to make sense”

Prof. Stefan Schlatt is one of the few researchers working in the field of reproductive medicine in Germany. His research focuses on male reproductive functions; and the fact that a whole human being develops from just two cells is something that still fascinates him regularly.

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“Quality is the top priority”

Prof. Andrea Rentmeister labels biomolecules, especially RNA. The chemical reactions necessary for this have to be highly selective and proceed under mild conditions as they are carried out on living cells. For Andrea Rentmeister it is especially important always to work accurately, because this is the way to find out the reason if something has gone wrong.

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© CiM - Jean-Marie Tronquet

“I love to spend time at the microscope”

Prof. Stefan Luschnig is an enthusiastic researcher. His great aim is to be able to understand and explain the primary processes in the development of organs – how cells build tubular structures. Luschnig, a biologist, collaborates with many other researchers because he knows that in one life you just cannot do everything yourself.

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“I became a scientist by chance”

For Prof. Klaus Schäfers everything revolves around motion correction. He and his team aim to make clinical images even more exact. And they have no lack of ideas for improving high-tech equipment.

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“Science is good when it’s creative”

Prof. Volker Gerke is interested in the organisation of cellular membranes. With his research group he studies how membrane dynamics affect intracellular trafficking and cell migration in the course of local inflammatory responses.

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“I want to tailor light in all its features into novel applications”

Cornelia Denz sculpts light and exploits it, for example, to investigate cells in living organisms, or to understand cell dynamics and migration in the inner cell. She is able to tailor light to tackle and answer many actual research challenges in cell science and nanotechnology - and most of all she would like to develop more applications using advanced structured light.

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“I could watch blood vessels for hours”

Prof. Stefan Schulte-Merker is fascinated by organ development in zebra fish. In optically transparent embryos, just a few millimetres in size, he observes how arteries, veins and lymphatic vessels develop. In terms of organ development, fish and humans are not so dissimilar.

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© WWU/Peter Grewer

“I’m proud to be a good mother and researcher”

Dr. Kerstin Bartscherer is on the trail of the master of regeneration. In the interview she talks about how she wants to crack the secret of the flatworm and how she successfully combines both – science and family.

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“Sport for endothelial cells”

The question Prof. Hans-Joachim Schnittler asks himself is: are trained endothelial cells the more resistant cells? It is a question which he is investigating with his team of international researchers – and with the help of his dedicated Flow System.