The main research project in the discipline of physiology investigates synaptic signalling mechanisms in the nervous system. The main focus is on the mechanisms guiding the formation of synapses and the functional neural networks of the brain during development. Particular emphasis is on tonically active kainate-type glutamate receptors (KAR), whose functioning seems to be essential for the development of the nervous system.
Research is conducted from the cellular and molecular level all the way to entire neural networks and animal behaviour. The research is characterised by a firmly integrated approach. In adult animals, the mechanisms under investigation are related to, among other things, the formation of memory traces. In pathophysiology, focus areas include epilepsies and the possibility of pain becoming chronic. In drug development, finding a completely new receptor mechanism essential to the regulation of nerve cell signalling opens interesting avenues to developing increasingly accurate and efficient pharmaceutical agents.
The research utilises the latest electrophysiological approaches (the patch-clamp technique, multielectrode arrays in vitro and in vivo) in combination with modern methods in molecular biology and genetics.