Wichmann, Carolin, Prof. Dr.

"Molecular Ultrastructure of synapses", Institute for Auditory Neuroscience & InnerEarLab

  • 12/ 2016 - W2 Professorship “Molecular Ultrastructure of Synapses” at the Institute for Auditory Neuroscience, University Medical Center Göttingen
  • 2011 - 2016 Group Leader in the InnerEarLab University Medical Center Göttingen (Group: Molecular Architecture of Synapses), Department of Otolaryngology (since January 1st 2015: Institute for Auditory Neuroscience)
  • 2008 – 2011 Research Associate at the Charité Berlin/NeuroCure/Freie Universität Berlin (Prof. Dr. Stephan J. Sigrist)
  • 2006 – 2008 Research Associate, Bio-Imaging Center, University of Würzburg (Prof. Dr. Stephan J. Sigrist)
  • 2005 – 2006 Research Associate at the Clinical Neurobiology, University of Würzburg (Prof. Dr. Manfred Heckmann/Prof. Dr. Stephan J. Sigrist)
  • 2002 – 2005 Research Associate at the European Neuroscience Institute (ENI), Göttingen (Dr. Stephan J. Sigrist)
  • 2002 Dr. rer. nat., Institute for Microbiology and Genetics, University of Göttingen (Prof. Dr. F. Mayer)
  • 1999 – 2002 Doctoral studies, Institute for Microbiology and Genetics, University of Göttingen (Prof. Dr. F. Mayer)
  • 1993 – 1999 Studies of Biology (Diploma), University of Göttingen

Major Research Interests

We combine immunohistochemistry, high resolution light microscopy and electron microscopy to study the molecular architecture of synapses and how structure relates to function. The sensory inner hair cell (IHC) ribbon synapses and central synapses of the early auditory pathway such as the endbulb of Held are of particular interest for us. Using electron microscopic techniques as electron tomography and high-pressure freezing/freeze-substitution (HPF/FS) we study morphological aspects of wild-type and mutant synapses of the early auditory pathway qualitatively and quantitatively. The combination of electron tomography and HPF/FS allows us to determine synaptic vesicle pools, docking or tethering of synaptic vesicles under different conditions (resting, inhibited or stimulated). The activation of IHCs, for example, is achieved by using electrolyte-solutions or, taking advantage of optogenetics, by using light. Further, we want to construct a coherent picture of the localization of synaptic proteins and also the innervation pattern of nerve fibers using immunofluorescence and immunogold labeling methods and serial-block-face or focused-ion-beam scanning-electron-microscopy.

Homepage Department/Research Group





Selected Recent Publications

  • Strenzke N#*, Chakrabarti R*, Al-Moyed H*, Müller A, Hoch G, Pangrsic T, Yamanbaeva G, Lenz C, Pan K-T, Auge E, Geiss-Friedlander R, Urlaub H, Brose N, Wichmann C#, Reisinger E# (2016) Hair cell synaptic dysfunction, auditory fatigue and thermal sensitivity in otoferlin Ile515Thr mutants. EMBO J 35, 2519-2535.
  • Vogl C*, Panou I*, Yamanbaeva G*, Wichmann C*, Mangosing SJ*, Vilardi F*, Indzhykulian AA*, Pangršič T*, Santarelli R, Rodriguez-Ballesteros M, Weber T, Jung S, Cardenas E, Wu X, Wojcik SM, Kwan KY, Del Castillo I, Schwappach B, Strenzke N, Corey DP, Lin SY, Moser T (2016) Tryptophan-rich basic protein (WRB) mediates insertion of the tail-anchored protein otoferlin and is required for hair cell exocytosis and hearing. EMBO J 35, 2536-2552.
  • Jung SY*, Maritzen T*, Wichmann C*, Jing Z, Neef A, Revelo NH, Al-Moyed H, Meese S, Wojcik SM, Panou I, Bulut H, Schu P, Ficner R, Reisinger E, Rizzoli SO, Neef J, Strenzke N, Haucke V & Moser T (2015). Disruption of adaptor protein 2µ (AP-2µ) in cochlear hair cells impairs vesicle reloading of synaptic release sites and hearing. EMBO J, 34:2686-702.
  • Jung S*, Oshima-Takago T*, Chakrabarti R§, Wong AB§,, Jing S, Yamanbaeva G, Picher MM, Wojcik SM, Göttfert F, Predoehl F, Michel K, Hell SW, Schoch S, Strenzke N# , Wichmann C#, Moser T# (2015) Rab3-interacting molecules 2α and ß (RIM2α and RIM2ß) promote the abundance of voltage gated CaV1.3 Ca2+ channels at hair cell active zones. PNAS 112:E3141-9.
  • Vogl C#, Cooper BH, Neef J, Wojcik SM, Reim K, Reisinger E, Brose N, Rhee JS, Moser T#, Wichmann C# (2015). Unconventional molecular regulation of synaptic vesicle replenishment in cochlear inner hair cells. J Cell Science, 128, 638-44.