Bachmann and Paliege are both experienced in a broad range techniques related to anatomy and cell biology of the kidney and the cardiovascular system, including high resolution immunohistochemistry and mRNA in situ hybridization. They provide extensive experience in the morphological and functional characterization of renal tissues. In the past, their scientific input was focussed on studies characterizing the distribution and regulation of key enzymes for nitric oxide and prostaglandin synthesis in the kidney. Paliege will contribute clinical experience and expertise in the generation and evaluation of animal models for AKI. Bachmann provides preferential access to the Charité morphological core facility, which he chairs.
*Dr. Paliege left the institution in December 2016.
Vera and Joachim Jankowski’s groups are experienced in molecular mechanisms of renal diseases. With a focus on mass-spectrometric analysis, this group discovered several vasoactive substances like dinucleoside polyphosphates and angiotensin peptides. Jankowskis’ group provides valuable help in the detection of molecular mechanisms of AKI based on proteomics analysis and mass-spectrometric-based imaging technologies.
Niendorf/Seeliger and Hoff merge three disciplines - MRI technology, parametric MRI, quantitative physiological techniques and clinical nephrology - to study renal hemodynamics and oxygenation under physiologic conditions and in AKI. As a team, all three share the expertise and success acquired with the MR-PHYSIOL setup accomplished during the 1st funding period. Niendorf is a MR physicist, Chair for Ultrahigh Field MR at the Charité, and is the head of the Berlin Ultrahigh Field Facility (B.U.F.F. MDC Campus Berlin-Buch). This facility houses, among other, a 9.4 Tesla small bore MRI scanner for imaging of small rodents. Niendorf focuses on novel methodology of mapping and probing morphology, function, physiology and metabolism and its application to advance renal MRI. Seeliger, who heads the working group “Integrative Kidney Physiology” at the Charité Institute of vegetative physiology, provides expertise in integrative physiology techniques (see Project 3). Hoff is a junior faculty member and clinical fellow at the department of nephrology and intensive care medicine. He provides experience in animal models of AKI.
*Dr. Hoff left the institution in October 2016.
Fähling (Junior Professor) and Rosenberger combine expertise in molecular biology and nephrology. Both applicants have profound expertise in the area of HIF research. Fähling provides vast knowledge of the mechanisms involved in the control of gene expression in hypoxia. He has a special focus on post-transcriptional regulation by RNA-binding proteins and microRNAs, HIF function and regulation, as well as adaptation of energy metabolism in hypoxia. Rosenberger is in the field of tissue hypoxia and HIF for over a decade and provided first evidence for insufficient HIF activation in AKI. Rosenberger is dedicated to HIF activation in renal disease, especially in AKI, a topic which he periodically covered by in depth reviews. Being mentored by Bachmann (Berlin), Kaissling (Zurich), and Rosen (Boston, MA), Rosenberger has acquired profound expertise in renal morphology and pathology.
Timm Westhoff performed several clinical trials in the fields of hypertension, transplantation and AKI. Among the experimental research activities, his focus is on humoral and endothelial mechanisms of vasoregulation. Until accepting the Chair for Nephrology at the University Clinics of the Ruhr-Universität Bochum in July 2013 Westhoff had worked at the Dept. of Nephrology, Charité – Campus Benjamin Franklin. Since his change to the Ruhr-Universität the clinical trial of Project 7 has been being performed in a two-center setting. Walter Zidek is Chairman of Internal Medicine and Head of the Dept. of Nephrology and Endocrinology Charité – Campus Benjamin Franklin. He has been the President of the German Society of Hypertension from 2001 to 2004. Walter Zidek has conducted several landmark studies in hypertension and clinical nephrology. In his experimental research he successfully identified and characterized several new vasoactive compounds. See Project 6 for Schmidt-Ott.
Schmidt-Ott is an Emmy Noether Fellow at the Max-Delbrück Center, Junior Professor at Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin and a clinical nephrologist at the Department of Nephrology, Campus Mitte Charité. He will receive a 5-year W2(S) professorship for urogenital research from Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin and MDC (anticipated starting date 10/2013). His research is focused on molecular mechanisms of kidney development, injury and regeneration, as well as on clinical implementation of novel biomarkers of AKI. Müller specialises in molecular pathways of immunity and organ damage. Together with Schmidt-Ullrich, a long term expert in NF-κB signalling, they provided a new view on the role of NF-κBs in renal failure: Inhibition of NF-κB markedly blunts renal inflammation and alleviates renal damage as caused by hypertension. Ruth Schmidt-Ullrich provides the team with reporter and knock-out mice, which have been generated by her or under her supervision.
The Seeliger/Arakelyan group contributes to the network by expertise in integrative studies on renal hemodynamics and oxygenation. In rat models of AKI, they characterize regulation of renal blood flow, intrarenal perfusion, and oxygenation by use of pathophysiologically relevant test procedures. This group has underscored the importance of medullary hypoperfusion and hypoxia for the development of CI-AKI and renal I/RI. By their work on CI-AKI, the importance of fluid viscosity for this form of AKI became widely accepted.
*Dr. Arakelyan left the institution in December 2014.
The Patzak/Persson/Sendeski group has long-standing experience in renal vessel and microvessel function in AKI, e.g., as observed after CM exposure. The extensive work by this group comprises articles on endothelin, adenosine, and angiotensin II signalling in renal vasculature as well as a number of often-cited larger-scale studies on the pathophysiology of CIAKI. Recently, they published high-profile articles on the microvascular component in contrast induced AKI.
*Dr. Sendeski left the institution in December 2015.
The combination of Dragun and Schunck brings together long-standing successful collaboration, combining unique mechanistic translational concepts in the area of critical care and transplant nephrology with in depth knowledge on lipid mediators, especially arachidonic acid metabolites. Dragun studies the vascular mechanisms and intracellular signalling involved in the pathogenesis of AKI in native and transplanted kidneys in experimental and clinical settings. Findings on agonistic autoantibody-mediated activation of angiotensin II-type 1 receptor induce pro-inflammatory downstream cascades in the vasculature and severe injury of the renal allograft are prominent 24, which is already translated in clinical routine worldwide. Dragun and Schunck together recently demonstrated that cytochrome P450 (CYP) dependent 20-HETE generation and action is involved in the development of renal I/RI 17. Schunk developed several transgenic animals with funstinal alterations of vasoactive eicosanoids, and provides an eicosanoid metabolome platform for the Research Unit.