Löwel, Siegrid, Prof. Dr.

Professor of Systems Neuroscience

  • since 2021 Board Member of the Göttingen Campus Institute for Dynamics of Biological Networks
  • since 2010 Full Professor of Systems Neuroscience, Institute for Zoology and Anthropology, University of Göttingen
  • 2005-2010 Professor of Neurobiology, University of Jena
  • 2004-2005 Scholarship Hertie-Excellency Program “Neurosciences”
  • 2003-2004 Dorothea-Erxleben-Guest Professorship, University of Magdeburg
  • 2002-2003 Associate Research Physiologist/Research Associate Professor, School of Medicine, Department of Physiology, University of California in San Francisco, USA
  • 1997-2005 Head of Independent Research Group “Visual Development and Plasticity”, Leibniz-Institute for Neurobiology, Magdeburg
  • 1988 Dr. phil. nat., University of Frankfurt a. M. / Department of Neurophysiology (Prof. Dr. Wolf Singer), Max-Planck-Institut für Hirnforschung, Frankfurt a. M.

Major Research Interests

The Löwel lab is focussed on understanding the development and plasticity of neuronal circuits in the mammalian cortex. We use a combination of techniques, including optical imaging, 2-photon imaging, electrophysiology and virus-mediated knock-down to explore how experience and learning influence the structure and function of nerve cell networks. We hope that answering these key questions not only helps to understand the rules underlying brain development, functioning and learning but additionally will open up new avenues to develop clinically relevant concepts to promote regeneration and rehabilitation for diseased and injured brains. The Löwel lab has made major contributions to experience-dependent changes in nerve cell networks: We were e.g. the first to demonstrate that the learning rule for the development of long-range cortical circuits is correlated activity: "neurons wire together if they fire together" (Löwel & Singer, 1992, Science 255: 209-212).

Homepage Department/Research Group


Selected Recent Publications

  • Yusifov, R., Tippmann, A., Staiger, J. F., Schlüter, O. M., and Löwel, S. PNAS 2021 March; Spine dynamics of PSD-95-deficient neurons in the visual cortex link silent synapses to structural cortical plasticity; 118: e2022701118. doi: 10.1073/pnas.2022701118.
  • Favaro PD, Huang X, Hosang L, Stodieck S, Cui L, Liu YZ, Engelhardt KA, Schmitz F, Dong Y, Löwel S* and Schlüter OM* (2018) An opposing function of paralogs in balancing development synapse maturation. PLoS Biol 16:e2006838. *equal contribution
  • Stryker MP and Löwel S (2018) Amblyopia: New molecular/pharmacological and environmental approaches. Vis Neurosci 35:E018.
  • Huang, X.*, Stodieck, S.K.*, Goetze, B., Schmidt, K.-F., Cui, L., Wenzel, C., Hosang, L., Dong, Y., Löwel, S.* and Schlüter, O.M.* (2015) The progressive maturation of silent synapses governs the duration of a critical period. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 112: E3131-40. *equal contribution.
  • van Wyk, M., Pielecka-Fortuna, J., Löwel, S. and Kleinlogel, S. (2015) Restoring the ON-switch in blind retinas: Opto-mGluR6, a next-generation, cell-tailored optogenetic tool. PLoS Biol. 13(5):e1002143.
  • Kalogeraki, E., Greifzu, F., Haack, F. and Löwel, S. (2014) Voluntary physical exercise promotes ocular dominance plasticity in adult mouse primary visual cortex. J. Neurosci. 34: 15476-15481.
  • Greifzu, F., Pielecka-Fortuna, J., Kalogeraki, E., Krempler, K., Favaro, P.D., Schlüter, O.M. and Löwel, S. (2014) Environmental enrichment extends ocular dominance plasticity into adulthood and protects from stroke-induced impairments of plasticity. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 111: 1150-1155.
  • Kaschube, M., Schnabel, M., Löwel, S., Coppola, D.M., White, L.E. and Wolf, F. (2010) Universality in the evolution of orientation columns in the visual cortex. Science 330: 1113-1116.