© Seebohm

Topics of research

We are interested in potassium (Kv, K2P) channels and ligand gated ionotropic receptors in different cell types (neurons, oligodendrocytes, pancreatic β-cells, cardiac myocytes). We work on ion channel pharmacology, biophysics, modeling, structure and function, pathophysiology of excitable systems, biophysics and cellular electrophysiology. We collaborate with several groups in an integrative effort to generate meaningful results.

ChemBIon project description

The Kv7.1/KCNE1 channel complex conducts the main cardiac repolarizing K+ current IKs under stress conditions. Mutations in this channel can cause loss-of-function, lead to the Long QT syndrome 1 (LQTS1) and potentially fatal ventricular arrhythmias. Recently, we used human iPSC-cardiomyocytes for modeling of such arrhythmias as a result of altered Kv7.1/KCNE1 function and report antiarrhythmic effects by pharmacological modulation. Member of a further class of cation selective ion channels are the glutamate/glycine-gated NMDA receptors. The NMDA receptor (NMDAR) is key to several neurophysiological and pathophysiological conditions. 7 genes encoding for proteins (GluN1, GluN2A-D, GluN3A-B) form hetero-tetrameric ligand-gated cation channels. Further, GluN1 can be spliced in up to 8 splice variants allowing for a multitude of possible subunit combinations that potentially allow for specific pharmacological targeting in different health conditions. Activation and inhibition of both Kv7.1/KCNE1 and the neuronal NMDAR can be achieved by natural and synthetic compounds including those with polyphenolic and steroidal scaffold. However, the exact mechanisms underlying those compounds effects are not well understood. Recently, X-ray crystal of NMDARs and cryo-EM structures of NMDARs and Kv7.1 have been reported and allow for diverse in silico modelling approaches.
The goal of this project is to identify compounds with specific ion channel modulatory features on cation channels Kv7.1/KCNE1 and NMDAR, extend the understanding of ion channel modulation on the molecular level and testing of the compounds in human iPSC-derived cardiomyocytes and neurones.

  • Curriculum vitae



    Academic studies in Biology and Sports, University of Göttingen, Germany


    Research fellow at Max-Planck-Institute for Exp. Med., Göttingen (Chair: Prof. W. Stühmer)

    1998 - 2001

    Graduate student at Aventis Pharma, Frankfurt in pharmacology

    Professional experience:


    Guest scientist at Institute of Biophysics & Kybernetics; Genua, Italy (Chair: Prof. M. Pusch)

    2001 - 2002

    Postdoc at Eccles Institute of Human Genetics, Salt Lake City, USA, (Chair: Prof. M. Sanguinetti)


    Guest scientist at University von Nagoya, Japan (Chair: Prof. K. Kamiya)

    2003 - 2008

    Head of lab in Physiology (Chair: Prof. F. Lang) and Apl. Professor at Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen


    Head of a lab at Sanofi-Aventis, SMA LIT, Frankfurt a. M.

    08 - 2012

    Head of lab in Biochemistry (Chair. M. Hollmann) and Apl. Professor at Ruhr-University Bochum

    2012 - present

    W3-Professor and head of Cellular Electrophysiology and Molecular Biology at Westfälische Wilhelms University Münster