Marius Alupei

I am a third year PhD student in the Department of Dermatology and Allergic Diseases, University of Ulm. In my project I am looking into the pathomechanisms behind Cockayne syndrome, a progeroid disease, under the supervision of PD Dr. Sebastian Iben. Outside the lab I try to relax by travelling, playing tennis and reading.

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David Bayer

I´m a member of the Department of Neurology under the supervision of Francesco Roselli. Studying the connectivity between the motor cortex and hypothalamus in an Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis transgenic mouse model will be my project for the next years. To have a rest I like to make music or I free my mind by riding racing bike.

Divisha Bhatia

My project focuses on the role of immunosenescence in altering alpha synuclein aggregation and spreading with ageing and in neurodegenerative disease like Parkinson’s disease. In my spare time, I like to spend time with my friends, read, or travel.

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Nicolai Bushart

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Kristin Feder

I am a PhD-student in the Institute for Experimental Cancer Research. My project deals with dissecting the role of lymphoid enhancer factor 1 (Lef1) in healthy and malignant hematopoiesis, since it is an important factor for Wnt signaling. Lef1 overexpression was shown to induce acute leukemia in mice and aberrant Wnt signaling is known to play an important role in leukemia. To further define the role of Lef1 and its short isoform lacking the β-catenin binding domain (Lef1ΔN), we e.g. use murine transplantation models, do overexpression and knockout experiments and application of small-molecule inhibitors to inhibit canonical Wnt signaling. My PIs are Prof. Dr. Buske from the Institute of Experimental Cancer Research in Ulm, Prof. Dr. Bullinger from Internal Medicine III, Section Oncology, in Ulm and PD Dr. Fiegl from Munich.

Simone Joas

AIDS and aging are linked because (i) HIV infection accelerates the aging process and (ii) individuals becoming infected at an older age show more rapid disease progression than younger individuals. To identify possible reasons for these differences, I will perform comprehensive phenotypic analyses of CD4+ T cells from uninfected young and elderly healthy donors to determine their susceptibility to HIV-1 infection and the induction of programmed cell death and inflammation.

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Nicole Kirsten

Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a cancer of myeloid blood cells and its incidence increases with age. Age-related changes in the bone marrow microenvironment are known, but the contribution of those changes to the AML progression are still unclear. Therefore I am focusing on the differences in the communication between young and aged stromal cells with their microenvironment.

In my leisure time, I am working as a writer for the ksm Verlag and a study ambassador for the Ministry of Science, Research and Art of Baden-Württemberg. I love doing all kinds of outdoor sport, traveling around the world and enjoying time with family and friends.

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Melanie Scharpf

Given that contradictory views exist on the impact of DNA damage and its repair on human aging, my project aims at a systematic analysis of the capacity and quality (pathway usage) of double-strand break repair in the human hematopoietic system. Thereby particular focus is laid on differential activities in mature versus primitive cells, the latter of which can give rise to leukemia upon low fidelity double-strand break repair.

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Desiree Schütz

I just started my PHD with the question, what causes age and strain dependent alterations of murine HSPCs. In the near future I want to investigate the role of cell cycle checkpoints in ensuring genomic integrity and preventing transformation. As compensation I like to do sports and to spend time with my dog.

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Katharina Senger

My focus is on deciphering the role of different septin proteins in hematopoietic stem cell aging and hematopoiesis. 

In my spare time, I love to do all kinds of sports, I enjoy baking and spending time with friends and family. 

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Aynur Sönmez

I’m a PhD student in the Institute of Applied Physiology. I am investigating mechanisms of neurodegeneration focusing on dysregulation of neuronal activity and protein synthesis.

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Smitha Srinivasachar

I am a PhD student in the Institute of Molecular Virology. The focus of the project is to understand the Interplay between HIV infection and Aging. I aim to elucidate the mechanisms involved in accelerated aging in HIV-1-infected individuals and critical for increased inflammation, immune damage and apoptosis in HIV-infected elderly individuals.
In my leisure time, I love to travel, spend time with friends and family. I enjoy cooking and I like to do sports.

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Rahel Wiehe

Over the past years great effort was made to solve the puzzle of mitochondrial DNA replication, but there are still many open questions and further research attempts are needed to fully understand in which way the mt genome is duplicated and also which factors regulate the mt gene transcription.
In my PhD thesis I want to gain further insights in involvement of Endonuclease G, a nuclear-encoded endonuclease, in mitochondrial DNA replication initiation and transcription and clarify whether Endonuclease G affects the integrity of mitochondrial DNA.”

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