Professor Dr. Christian Henneberger

Group Leader, Synaptic neuron-glia interactions
Institute of Cellular Neurosciences
University of Bonn Medical Center
Sigmund-Freud-Str. 25
D- 53127 Bonn

Phone +49 (0) 228 287-16304
Fax +49 (0) 228 287-19121


Curriculum vitae Professor Dr. Christian Henneberger

Research Interests

Our lab mainly focusses on neuron-glia interactions in the hippocampus. We are particularly interested in how astrocytes influence long-term plasticity of synpatic transmission, a cellular mechanism implicated in learning. A key signal in the induction of plasticity at many synapses is the activation of NMDA receptors (NMDARs). This requires the presence of a NMDAR coagonist.

We could recently demonstrate that release of the NMDAR co-agonist D-serine from astrocytes supports NMDARdependent long-term potentiation (LTP) at hippocampal CA3-CA1 synapses. How efficient D-serine is supplied from astrocytes to neuronal NMDARs is expected to depend on the spatial relationship between the fine astrocyte branches and the NMDAR and therefore astrocyte morphology. We currently investigate how rapid astrocyte morphology changes modify NMDAR function and NMDAR-dependent signalling like synpatic plasticity and dendritic integration in healthy tissue and epilepsy models.


We primarily combine electrophysiology and imaging in acute slices of the rodent hippocampus. Typical experiments involve single or double patch-clamp whole-cell and/or field recordings and simultaneous two-photon excitation fluorescence lifetime imaging.

5 most important publications

1. Henneberger C, Rusakov DA. (2012) Monitoring local synaptic activity with astrocytic patch pipettes. Nat Protoc, 7(12): 2171-2179.

2. Henneberger C, Papouin T, Oliet SHR, Rusakov DA. (2010). Long-term potentiation depends on release of dserine from astrocytes. Nature, 463: 232-236.

3. Kochlamazashvili G*, Henneberger C*, Bukalo O*, Dvoretskova E, Senkov O, Lievens PM, Westenbroek R, Engel AK, Catterall WA, Rusakov DA, Schachner M, Dityatev A. (2010) The Extracellular Matrix Molecule Hyaluronic Acid Regulates Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity by Modulating Postsynaptic L-Type Ca2+ Channels. Neuron, 67: 116-128. (*equal contribution).

4. Meier JC, Henneberger C, Melnick I, Racca C, Harvey RJ, Heinemann U, Schmieden V, Grantyn R. (2005) RNA editing produces glycine receptor alpha3(P185L), resulting in high agonist potency. Nat  Neurosci, 8: 736-744.

5. Henneberger C, Jüttner R, Rothe T, Grantyn R. (2002) Postsynaptic action of BDNF on GABAergic synaptic transmission in the superficial layers of the mouse superior colliculus. J  Neurophysiol 88: 595-603.