In the nervous system release of neurotransmitter at specialized contact sites, synapses, is the major mode of communication. This process of vesicular exocytosis of neurotransmitter is highly adjustable to neuronal activity and alterations in synaptic properties and numbers have been suggested to constitute a fundamental mechanism for modifying functional properties of neuronal networks and thereby contributing to phenomena like learning and memory. Our research is focused on the following questions: (1) what are the molecular mechanisms regulating synaptic function and plasticity, (2) how do these mechanisms differ between functionally distinct types of synapses, (3) how does synaptic dysfunction contribute to the development of cognitive disorders and hyperexcitability.
To address these questions we apply molecular, biochemical, and morphological techniques, FLIM/FRET, dSTORM, time-lapse, 2-photon, confocal and widefield imaging, viral transduction, experimental animal models.
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- molecular biology
- transgenic animal models
- stereotactic viral injections
- behavioral analyses
- time-lapse imaging (e.g. iGluSnFr, GCaMp)
5 selected publications
- Müller JA, Betzin J, Oprisoreanu A-M, Engholm-Keller K, Mayer A, Paulußen I, Schönhense E, Gulakova P, McGovern TD, Gschossmann LJ, Wark JR, Lamprecht A, Becker AJ, Waardenberg AJ, Graham ME, Dietrich D, Schoch S (2020) A Presynaptic Phosphosignaling Hub for Lasting Homeostatic Plasticity. Ssrn Electron J. https://doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3728948, conditionally accepted 27.01.2022 Cell Reports
- Schoch S, Quatraccioni A, Robens BK, Maresch R, Loo KMJ van, Kelly T, Opitz T, Borger V, Dietrich D, Pitsch J, Beck H, Becker AJ Ste20-like kinase is critical for inhibitory synapse maintenance and its deficiency confers a developmental dendritopathy. J Neurosci. 2021 Sep 29;41(39):8111-8125
- van Loo KMJ, Rummel CK, Pitsch J, Alexander Müller J, Bikbaev AF, Martinez Chavez E, Blaess S, Dietrich D, Heine M, Becker AJ, Schoch S. Calcium channel subunit α2δ4 is regulated by early growth response 1 and facilitates epileptogenesis. J. Neurosci 2019 Feb 21;:1731–18.
- Woitecki AMH, Müller JA, van Loo KMJ, Sowade RF, Becker AJ, Schoch S (2016) Identification of Synaptotagmin 10 as Effector of NPAS4-Mediated Protection from Excitotoxic Neurodegeneration. J. Neurosci. 36:2561–2570.
- Alvarez-Baron E, Michel K, Mittelstaedt T, Opitz T, Schmitz F, Beck H, Dietrich D, Becker AJ, Schoch S (2013) RIM3γ and RIM4γ regulate neuronal arborization. J. Neurosci. 33:824-839.