AG Lutz

Head:  Univ.-Prof. Dr. Beat Lutz
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Staff:

Annika Beer, PhD student
Dr. Laura Bindila, scientist, Lipidomics Core Facility
Diego Pascual Cuadrado, PhD student
Saskia Göbler, Master student
Christine Klüter, Diplom-Betriebswirtin, administrative coordination
Irina Kovlyagina, PhD student
Ermelinda Lomazzo, PhD, scientist
Dr. Sabrina Meister, project coordination
Dr. Inigo Ruiz de Azua, scientist
Margaryta Tevosian, PhD student

Research overview:
The Lutz research group investigates the role of the endocannabinoid system as a mediator in stress resilience. To this end, (epi)genetic and pharmacological methods in mouse will be applied to dissect this modulatory system at the functional level. Not only brain functions, but also peripheral neuronal, endocrine and immunological mechanisms will be investigated regarding stress resilience. Furthermore, physical activity as well as food addiction and impulse control will be included in this research, addressing the questions, e.g., why only a fraction of subjects are becoming addictive or impulsive towards food.

Current research projects:

  • Transcriptional network analyses in stress resilience using single cell RNA-seq in distinct neural cell populations
  • Signaling mediators in blood for the mediation of training induced stress resilience
  • Role of hippocampal adult neurogenesis and connectivity patterns in newly integrated neurons in stress resilience
  • Role of endocannabinoids in mediating of stress resilience
  • Mapping of neuronal activity patters in stress resilience

External collaboration partners:

  • Prof. Dr. Rafael Maldonado, University Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain
  • Univ.-Prof. Dr. Hans-Christian Pape, Institute for Physiology, Universitäty Münster, Münster, Germany

Funding:

  • German Research Foundation
  • Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation

Key Publications:

  • Busquets-Garcia A, Gomis-González M, Srivastava RK, Cutando L, Ortega-Alvaro A, Ruehle S, Remmers F, Bindila L, Bellocchio L, Marsicano G, Lutz B*, Maldonado R*, Ozaita A* (2016) Peripheral and central CB1 cannabinoid receptors control stress-induced impairment of memory consolidation. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 113:9904-9. *shared senior authors
  • Fuss J, Steinle J, Bindila L, Auer MK, Kirchherr H, Lutz B, Gass P (2015) A runner's high depends on cannabinoid receptors in mice. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 112:13105-8.
  • Lange MD, Daldrup T, Remmers R, Szkudlarek HJ, Lesting J, Guggenhuber G, Ruehle S, Jüngling K, Seidenbecher T, Lutz B, Pape HC (2017) Cannabinoid CB1 receptors in distinct circuits of the extended amygdala determine fear responsiveness to unpredictable threat. Mol Psychiatry 22(10):1422-1430.
  • Lomazzo E, Bindila L, Remmers F, Lerner R, Schwitter C, Hoheisel U, Lutz B (2015) Therapeutic potential of inhibitors of endocannabinoid degradation for the treatment of stress-related hyperalgesia in an animal model of chronic pain. Neuropsychopharmacology 40:488-501.
  • Lutz B, Marsicano G, Maldonado R, Hillard CJ (2015) The endocannabinoid system in guarding against fear, anxiety and stress. Nat Rev Neurosci 16:705-18.