Arbeitsgruppe Dr. Birgit Weinhold/Dr. Anja Münster-Kühnel
Sialoglycobiology in mammalian development
Dr. Birgit Weinhold
Building J03, Level 04, Room 1220
Dr. Anja Münster-Kühnel
Building J03, Level 04, Room 1310
Our group concentrates on the impact of sialic acids (Sia) during embryonic and early postnatal development. We use conditional knock-out and knock-down models targeting the sialic acid activating enzyme CMP-sialic acid synthetase (CMAS) in mice.
Every living cell is covered by a dense layer of glycoproteins, glycolipids and proteoglycans, the so called glycocalyx. Sialic acids are located at terminal positions on glycans and mediate cell-cell contacts and communications. The depletion of CMAS results in an asialo and embryonic lethal phenotype. Reduced CMAS expression causes kidney failure and postnatal death.
We aim to
- Analyse the expression patterns of sialoglycans and elucidate their functions during development in mice
- Provide mouse model systems to investigate the role of sialylation in fetal rejection, placentation deficits, preeclampsia, and nephropathies
- Explain pathomechanisms associated with lack of Sia in mammals