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Institute of Complex Systems
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Cell Engineering

By introducing and specifically targeting new proteins into cells, we aim to create systems that allow us to probe information processing in cell networks and generate new bioelectronic materials. Our current research is focused on:

Optogenetic Actuators

Optogenetic Actuators

Stimulation and inhibition of neuronal signaling using light actuated channels and pumps. Optogenetic actuators based on Channelrhodopsin, Halorhodopsin, and Photactivated adenyl cyclase are employed.

Genetically Encoded Voltage Indicators

Genetically Encoded Voltage Indicators

The membrane potential of the cell is monitored fluorescently using membrane associated proteins. Voltage changes are detected based on FRET or quenching of the inserted fluorophore.


Dominik Brinkmann

Dominik Brinkmann, Doctoral Researcher

tel: +49 (0)2461 61 2343
Research activities: optogenetics, patterned neural networks, electrophysiology

Timm Hondrich

Timm Hondrich, Doctoral Researcher

tel: +49 (0)2461 61 3542
Research activities: optogenetics, patterned neural networks, microcontact printing, electrophysiology

Vanessa Maybeck

Dr. Vanessa Maybeck, PI

tel: +49 (0)2461 61 3285
Research activities: Engineered bioelectronic materials

Jana Schieren

Jana Schieren, Master Student

tel: +49 (0)2461 61 2605
Research activities: optogenetics, live-cell imaging, growth cone guidance

Jiali Wang

Jiali Wang, Doctoral Researcher

tel: +49 (0)2461 61 6270
Research activities: optogenetics, electrophysiology, patterned neuronal networks

Ruoyan Wei

Ruoyan Wei, Doctoral Researcher

tel: +49 2461 61-2606
Research activities: Upconversion nanoparticles for optogenetic applications

Former Members

Irina Tihaa, Doctoral Researcher until 06/2018
Annika Graeve, Bachelor Student until 03/2018
Sarah Roßbiegalle, Bachelor Student until 02/2018
Wenfang Li, Doctoral researcher until 03/2017
Lei Jin, Doctoral Researcher until 07/2016

Additional Information


Dr. Vanessa Maybeck

Tel.:  +49-2461-61-3285

Recent Publications

High-efficiency transduction and specific expression of ChR2opt for optogenetic manipulation of primary cortical neurons mediated by recombinant adeno-associated viruses
Jin  et al., J Biotechnol,2016, 233:171–80

An evaluation of extracellular MEA versus optogenetic stimulation of cortical neurons
Maybeck et al., Biomed Phys Eng Express, 2016, 2:055017