Wojcik, Sonja M., Ph.D.

Group Leader

  • Diploma in Biology, RWTH Aachen, Germany (1994)
  • Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, USA (2000)
  • Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Molecular Neurobiology, Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine, Göttingen, Germany (2001)
  • Group leader, Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine, Göttingen, Germany (2008)
  • Habilitation, Medical Faculty of the University of Göttingen, Germany (2014)

Major Research Interests

We study the molecular processes underlying neurotransmitter release and the functional consequences of alterations in these processes at the cellular and network levels.

In the past, projects were mainly focused on analyzing the role of vesicular neurotransmitter transporters in neurons as determining factors in the establishment and maintenance of glutamatergic, GABAergic and glycinergic synaptic phenotypes.

Current projects include the analysis of regulatory mechanisms that control the release of non-classical neurotransmitters from large dense-core vesicles in neuroendocrine chromaffin cells and peptidergic neurons.

Homepage Department/Research Group


Selected Recent Publications

  • Wüstefeld, L., Winkler, D., Janc, O.A., Hassouna, I., Ronnenberg, A., Ostmeier, K., Muller, M., Brose, N., Ehrenreich, H., and Wojcik, S.M. (2015). Selective expression of a constitutively active erythropoietin receptor in GABAergic neurons alters hippocampal network properties without affecting cognition. J Neurochem, doi: 10.1111/jnc.13445. [Epub ahead of print]
  • Man, K.M., Imig, C., Walter, A.M., Pinheiro, P.S., Stevens, D.R., Rettig, J., Sorensen, J.B., Cooper, B.H., Brose, N., and Wojcik, S.M. (2015). Identification of a Munc13-sensitive step in chromaffin cell large dense-core vesicle exocytosis. eLife 4, doi: 10.7554/eLife.10635.
  • Rahman, J., Besser, S., Schnell, C., Eulenburg, V., Hirrlinger, J., Wojcik, S.M. and Hulsmann, S. (2015) Genetic ablation of VIAAT in glycinergic neurons causes a severe respiratory phenotype and perinatal death. Brain Struct Funct 220, 2835-2849.
  • Wojcik, S.M., Tantra, M., Stepniak, B., Man, K.N., Muller-Ribbe, K., Begemann, M., Ju, A., Papiol, S., Ronnenberg, A., Gurvich, A., Shin, Y., Augustin, I., Brose, N., and Ehrenreich, H. (2013). Genetic Markers of a Munc13 Protein Family Member, BAIAP3, Are Gender-Specifically Associated with Anxiety and Benzodiazepine Abuse in Mice and Humans. Mol Med 19, 135-148.
  • Wojcik, S.M., Katsurabayashi, S., Guillemin, I., Friauf, E., Rosenmund, C., Brose, N., and Rhee, J.S. (2006). A Shared Vesicular Carrier Allows Synaptic Corelease of GABA and Glycine. Neuron 50, 575-587.
  • Herzog, E., Takamori, S., Jahn, R., Brose, N., and Wojcik, S.M. (2006). Synaptic and vesicular co-localization of the glutamate transporters VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 in the mouse hippocampus. J Neurochem 99, 1011-1018.