Function and dysfunction of ion channels

Ion channels play a key role in cellular metabolism and in the functioning or regulation of nerves, heart and muscle cells. The NMI uses high-resolution electrophysiological and optical technology to examine the function of diverse ion channels in various cellular systems in detail. The focus of these investigations is on the pharmacologicallyrelevant interaction of substances. This work targets key issues in the fields of regenerative medicine, diagnostics and drug development.

Development of a cellular testing system for examining ion channels

Using the most modern electrophysiological techniques, such as parallel patch clamps and 96-well microelectrodes (MEAs), among others, we developed a cellular test system to examine ion channels. We also used this system to gain insight into disease processes as well as for toxicity studies
and pharmaceutical drug discovery.
These techniques are standardized and validated till they can be applied in the pharmaceutical industry. Our facilities offer supplementary analyses of signal transmission mechanisms at the single cell level, in tissue preparations and in organ systems. In this way, specific and activity-dependent effects of substances can be examined in cardiac, neuronal, insulin-releasing and stem cellderived cells.