Helmholtz Zentrum Munich

Institute for Developmental Genetics

The major aims of the Institute of Developmental Genetics at the Helmholtz Zentrum Munich are to unravel the molecular genetic networks controlling neuronal pattern formation, neuronal specification and differentiation during development. Since many of the developmentally regulated genes are continued to be expressed in adults and influence the proper function of major neurotransmitter systems, we also concentrate on the identification of genetic factors influencing psychiatric and neurological disease.

In order to achieve this goal we are identifying novel genes using DNA chip technology, bioinformatics, large gene trap, RNA interference (RNAi) and chemical mutagenesis approaches in zebrafish and mouse as model systems. Selected genes are functionally dissected by conditional gene targeting strategies. Subsequently, the produced mutants are analysed in detail for alterations in neuronal pattern formation, in neuronal specification and differentiation as well as for alterations in adult behaviour using a variety of morphological, physiological and neurological techniques.

Applying these strategies we will determine the genetic networks underlying neuronal development and neurological and psychiatric disorders. Furthermore, the thereby generated mutants might serve as animal models for human disease.


Helmholtz Zentrum Munich
Institute for Developmental Genetics
Ingolstädter Landstr. 1
85764 Münich/Neuherberg
Field of Activity:
Research & Development