Ph.D. Program




Members > Wolfgang Engel

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Wolfgang Engel

Professor of Human Genetics

  • Dr. med., Universität Freiburg, 1967

  • Physician, Hospital Schorndorf, 1966 - 1968

  • Postdoc, Institute of Human Genetics and Anthropology, Universität Freiburg, 1968 - 1977

  • Habilitation (Human Genetics), Universität Freiburg, 1974

  • Professor of Human Genetics and Director of the Institute, Universität Göttingen, 1977

Major Research Interests:

Wolfgang Engel

Our research is focussed on the molecular analysis of normal human variability and genetic disturbances of development and differentiation.
Isolated genes are being analysed in detail with respect to their functional properties by animal models (transgenic and knock-out-mice). For suitable genetic diseases therapeutic strategies (substitution; gene therapy) are being developed and initial evaluation of such strategies is done in the mouse. We are working on the genotype-phenotype correlations in neurological and cardiovascular diseases (e. g. Spastic paraplegia, Rett syndrome, Morbus Osler, mental retardation by subtelomeric microdeletions, molybdenum cofactor deficiency; cardiomypathies, Noonan syndrome) and several genetically determined malformation syndromes. We are also engaged in the molecular and cellular basis of initiation events of cancer, specifically in prostate cancer, medulloblastoma and rhabdomyosarcoma. One main interest in our institute is the analysis of structure, expression and function of genes involved in differentiation of male gametes. The knowledge of the function of those genes can help us to clarify the genetic causes of male infertility.
We have isolated spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) from adult mouse testis and demonstrated that these cells are as pluripotent as embryonic stem cells (ESCs). Our main interest is now to isolate and proliferate SSCs from adult human testis. These cells would be of great interest for regenerative medicine.

Dept. of Human Genetics
Georg August University Göttingen
Robert-Koch-Str. 40
37075 Göttingen

phone: +49-551-39 7590
fax: +49-551-39 9303

Further Information:
Human Genetics Dept.

Selected Recent Publications:

Nayerniaa K, Lee JH, Drusenheimer N, Nolte J, Wulf G, Dressel R, Gromoll J, Engel W (2006) Derivation of male germ cells from bone marrow stem cells. Laboratory Investigation 86: 654-663

Nayernia K, Nolte J, Michelmann HW, Lee JH, Rathsack K, Drusenheimer N, Dev A, Wulf G, Ehrmann IE, Elliott DJ, Okpanyi V, Zechner, Haaf T, MeinhardtA, Engel W (2006) In vitro-differentiated embryonic stem cells give rise to male gametes that can generate offspring mice. Developmental Cell 11: 125-132

Lee JH, Engel W, Nayernia K (2006) Stem cell protein Piwil2 modulates expression of murine spermatogonial stem cell expressed genes. Molecular Reproduction and Development 73: 173-179

Guan K, Nayernia K, Maier LS, Wagner S, Dressel R, Lee JH, Nolte J, Wolf, F, Li M, Engel W, Hasenfuß G (2006) Pluripotency of spermatogonial stem cells from adult mouse testis. Nature 440, 1199-1203

Lee HJ, Göring W, Ochs M, Mühlfeld C, Steding G, Paprotta I, Engel W, Adham IM (2004) Sox 15 is required for skeletal muscle regeneration. Molecular and Cellular Biology 19: 8428-8436

Nayernia K, Li, M, Jaroszynski L, Khusainow R, Wulf G, Schwandt I, Korbiowska M, Michelmann HW, Meinhardt A, Engel W (2004) Stem cells based therapeutical approach of male infertility by teratocarcinoma derived germ cells. Human Molecular Genetics 13: 1451-1460