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1. Gene Expression & Regulation

Addresses gene expression in the nucleus in the mitochondria is particularly relevant in excitable cells of the cardiac and nervous systems, since these cells rely on highly efficient energy metabolism. However, compared to the nucleus, our knowledge on gene expression processes in mitochondria is far less advanced.
Research Alliance 1.1: Mitochondrial Gene Expression
Research Alliance 1.2: Epigenetic Regulation of Gene Transcription

Research Alliance 1.1: Mitochondrial Gene Expression

investigates the principles of mitochondrial gene expression and its regulation. The goal is to understand the fundamental mechanisms of mitochondrial transcription and translation, and to investigate how these processes are physically and spatially organized, and functionally regulated.

We study how these mechanisms are regulated in excitable cells for serving their functional needs. This can be tackled optimally in a study of different excitable cells, i.e. in cardiomyocytes and neurons.

Indeed, we investigate the processes over different scales of observation – from unique structural insights into the molecular machines enabling mitochondrial gene expression, to its spatial and temporal organization in excitable cells and tissues.


Prof. Dr. Peter Rehling
University Medical Center
Department of Cellular Biochemistry / Institute for Cell Biochemistry
Humboldtallee 23
37073 Göttingen

Research Groups

Research Alliance 1.2: Epigenetic Regulation of Gene Transcription

addresses epigenetic control of nuclear gene expression, which is of great importance for the postmitotic excitable cells of the heart and the brain, and yet is poorly understood.

We study epigenetic and epitranscriptomic changes in cardiomyocytes and neurons through which they transform transient stimuli into long-term adaptive changes of the cardiac and nervous systems. We identify and characterize writers, readers, and erasers of chromatin modifications at different scales ranging from atomic structure to functional protein organization and phenotypic analysis.

Our results will also elucidate molecular pathologies particularly relevant to excitable cells, and will provide new insights into the mechanism of cardiac hypertrophy and the transition to heart failure.


Prof. Dr. André Fischer
German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE)
Epigenetics and Systems Medicine in Neurodegenerative Diseases
Von-Siebold-Str. 3a
37075 Göttingen

Research Groups

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