Munich LMU, Germany

Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich

Participant 01: Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich
Zentrum für Neuropathologie und Prionforschung
Feodor-Lynen-Str. 23
D-81377 München


Project Leader


Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Hans A. Kretzschmar † (please view the announcement).

Prof. Dr. Hans A. Kretzschmar

Project Staff


Dr. Thomas Arzberger
Deputy Co-ordinator 
Phone: +49 (89) 2180 78066 
Fax: +49 (89) 2180 78037 


Peer Schmitz
IT Systems Administrator 
Peer Schmitz


Ameli Schwalber
(Project manager - administrative matters) 
Phone: +49 (8141) 6252 8571 
Fax: +49 (8141) 6252 8577 
Ameli Schwalber

Institute Presentation

The Munich Brain Bank was established in 1994 at the Institute of Neuropathology. The thematic emphasis of the Munich Brain Bank is Parkinson's disease and dementing degenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and Frontolobar Degeneration.Epidemiological studies have shown that in 20% of deaths with dementing illnesses, the suspected clinical diagnosis deviates from the post-mortem neuropathological diagnosis. For greater diagnostic accuracy a post-mortem neuropathological investigation (autopsy) is recommended in all cases of neurological and psychiatric disorders, even in those cases where the clinical appearance seems typical of one the major and well-recognized disorders.

The Munich Brain Bank offers help with the organization and implementation of autopsies as well as with the neuropathologic diagnosis. Please contact the Institute of Neuropathology, LMU: +49 89 2180 78001 (phone), +49 89 2180 78037 (fax).

The Brain Bank Munich coordinates the European brain tissue bank (BNE) and the German national brain tissue bank (BrainNet).

Alzheimer, Kraepelin, Gaupp and Nissl on a boat ride on Lake Starnberg near Munich around 1910

The forerunners of the Munich Brain Bank:
Alzheimer, Kraepelin, Gaupp and Nissl on a boat ride on Lake Starnberg near Munich around 1910.

Major research activities of Brain Bank Munich

Prion diseases and Neurodegenerative Diseases

Pathology, Genetics, Epidemiology

  • Investigations of the genetics, pathology, early diagnosis and epidemiology of human spongiform encephalopathies or prion diseases (funded by the Federal Ministry of Health)

  • Neuropathology of neurodegenerative diseases. The Institute of Neuropathology in Munich is the Reference Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases and Prion Diseases of the German Society of Neuropathology and Neuroanatomy (

Development of new diagnostic and therapeutic techniques

  • Development of highly sensitive tests for the detection of PrPSc in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), brain tissue and blood (EU) using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (EU) and protein misfolding cyclic amplification (PMCA)
  • Search for neurotherapeutic targets for prion diseases and other neurodegenerative diseases using sift and animal experiments.

Cell Biology, Physiology, Molecular Biology

  • The cellular function of prion proteins and the role of copper binding to PrP
  • Cellular pathogenesis of prion diseases (EU)
  • Validation of transgenic mouse models for Alzheimer's disease: The role of cellular calcium entry
  • Validation of transgenic mouse models for Parkinson's disease and multiple system atrophy (DFG): Examination of the cellular distribution of the transgenic protein in different mouse lines expressing a-Synuclein (WT and mutants) under the control of different promoters (Thy1, TH, PLP). Characterization of neuropathological changes such as accumulation, aggregation, fibrillization and neurodegeneration using routine histological stains and immunohistochemistry, electron microscopy as well as newly developed staining methods (PET blot).

Biochemical studies, single molecule analysis

  • Biochemical and biophysical analysis of aggregated prion protein and a-synuclein purified from brain tissue
  • Studies on seeded aggregation and de novo aggregation of prion protein and alpha-synuclein in vitro
  • Role of metal ions and other co-factors in PrPSc formation in vitro
  • Structure-function relationships of different conformations of the prion protein

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Copyright (c) BrainNet Europe, coordinated by the Centre for Neuropathology and Prion Research, Ludwig- Maximilians-University Munich, Germany. Tel.: +49-89-2180-78001

Video BrainNet Europe

Click to watch the video.

Consortium Participants


Workpackage Structure