Experimental Neurosurgery

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Donat Kögel

Experimental Neurosurgery, Dept. of Neurosurgery
Neuroscience Center
Frankfurt University Hospital
Heinrich-Hoffmann-Str. 7
D-60528 Frankfurt am Main

Tel ++49 69-6301-6923
Fax ++49 69- 6301-5575




Scientific Focus

Our research mainly focuses on the molecular mechanisms of apoptosis, non-apoptotic cell death and autophagy. In one part of our studies, we are elucidating the molecular events leading to gliomagenesis, as well as apoptosis deficiency and therapy resistance of glioblastoma multiforme, the most malignant and deadly human primary brain tumor. Based on these investigations, we are trying to develop novel genetic insight-based therapeutic strategies for the treatment of gliomas in cell culture models and in transplantable syngeneic animal tumor models. Another major aim in our lab is to identify the relevant pathophysiological stress stimuli and cell death signalling pathways implicated in apoptotic neuron death in stroke, Alzheimer´s disease and Parkinson´s disease. In this context, we are especially interested in the transcriptional stress responses and mitochondrial events underlying cell death and cell survival decisions in neurons.

Research Interests

Mechanisms of programmed cell death, acute and chronic cns damage, neuronal stress signalling, physiological and pathophysiological roles of the amyloid precursor protein and its family members, mitochondrial control of cell death, target-specific therapies for the treatment of brain tumors, oncogenic signalling pathways, autophagy in health and disease, mechanisms of tumor cell migration and invasion.




German Research Foundation (DFG)
German Cancer Aid (Deutsche Krebshilfe)
LOEWE program, state of Hessia (OSF)
Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)





Assays for detection of apoptosis (Caspase assays, FACS Annexin/propidium iodide, measurement of mitochondrial membrane potentials), autophagy (LC3 conversion and translocation, autophagic flux of GFP-LC3-RFP, p62 degradation, FACS Lysotracker) and cell viability (MTT assay), cultivation of primary neurons, in vitro hypoxia/ischemia models, reporter gene assays, siRNA techniques, lentiviral gene transfer, live cell imaging, in vivo brain tumor models, in vitro models for cell migration and invasion.



Group members


Dr. Benedikt Linder


+49 69-6301-84051

Nina Meyer

PhD student

+49 69-6301-6940

Janina Remy

PhD student

+49 69-6301-6940

Lisa Henkel

PhD student

+49 69-6301-6940

Hildegard König


+ 49 69-6301-6930

Andrej Wehle

MD student

+ 49 69-6301-84051