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Helmholtz Munich | ©Mara Catani

Helmholtz Diabetes Center Institute of Diabetes and Regeneration Research

The primary objective of the Institute of Diabetes and Regeneration Research (IDR) at the Helmholtz Diabetes Center Munich is to develop regenerative therapeutic approaches to treat diabetes mellitus. Therefore, the aim is to improve current strategies for functional β-cell production in vitro with the ultimate goal to provide alternative sources of β-cells for cell replacement therapy in diabetes. Additionally, we analyze and characterize the embryonic and adult pancreatic progenitor cells to understand β-cell development, homeostasis and function for in vivo regeneration. Triggering endogenous β-cell regeneration is a promising approach to restore beta cell mass and normoglycemia in diabetic patients.

The primary objective of the Institute of Diabetes and Regeneration Research (IDR) at the Helmholtz Diabetes Center Munich is to develop regenerative therapeutic approaches to treat diabetes mellitus. Therefore, the aim is to improve current strategies for functional β-cell production in vitro with the ultimate goal to provide alternative sources of β-cells for cell replacement therapy in diabetes. Additionally, we analyze and characterize the embryonic and adult pancreatic progenitor cells to understand β-cell development, homeostasis and function for in vivo regeneration. Triggering endogenous β-cell regeneration is a promising approach to restore beta cell mass and normoglycemia in diabetic patients.

Our Research Groups

Confocal picture of mouse embryonic pancreatic epithelium
Helmholtz Munich | Mostafa Bakhti
Dr. Mostafa Bakhti

Beta Cell Development and Regeneration

We study the programs underlying pancreatic formation and function to design novel strategies for diabetes therapy and tissue engineering. Specifically, we explore the cellular and molecular processes that coordinate endocrine cell morphogenesis, differentiation, and function.

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IDR_stem cell group_Ingo Burtscher
Helmholtz Munich | Ingo Burtscher
Dr. Ingo Burtscher

Stem Cell Research

Using CRISPR/Cas 9 technology Dr. Burtscher and his team is generating numerous fluorescent iPSC reporter lines which are being used to investigate how alpha-, beta- or other endocrine cells are formed, how these lineage decisions are regulated, and how mature cell types can be differentiated in a culture dish.

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Beta Cells Human Stern Cell-Derived Islet-Like Cluster, IDR
Helmholtz Munich | © Katharina Scheibner

Beta Cell Replacement

Our group aims to advance the generation of human stem cell-derived islet-like clusters (SC-ILCs). Human pancreas development is not well understood and thus current protocols result in inefficient and impure SC-ILCs with limited functionality. Therefore, the Beta Cell Replacement group focusses on deciphering essential processes during human pancreas development and establishes new approaches to generate improved SC-ILCs.

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Helmholtz Munich | Anika Böttcher
Dr. Anika Böttcher

Intestinal Stem Cell Research

The “Intestinal stem cell” group aims to decipher the molecular mechanisms driving intestinal stem cell lineage decisions in order to identify new druggable targets for the treatment of diet-induced intestinal dysfunction. In particular, we would like to understand how stem cell niche composition and mechanics regulate cellular differentiation and if niche composition and mechanics are altered in obesity and diabetes and contribute to diet-induced intestinal dysfunction.

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IDR_human islets 4
Helmholtz Munich | Joanne van Vuuren
Prof. Heiko Lickert

Islet Biology

We study the molecular basis of pancreatic lineage specification as well as islet cell development, maturation, heterogeneity, function, and regeneration across species. We investigate epigenetic, transcriptional, and proteomic features in mouse, pig, and human islets in order to uncover and functionally interrogate the driving factors and molecular programs behind the changes in islet cell phenotypes.

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The Inceptor
©Helmholtz Zentrum München
Prof. Heiko Lickert

Insulin Signalling in Beta Cells

Our discovery of inceptor, a novel and druggable insulin inhibitory receptor, is a significant milestone for diabetes research as the scientific community celebrates 100 years of insulin and 50 years of insulin receptor discovery. The blocking of inceptor function leads to an increased sensitisation of the insulin signaling pathway in pancreatic beta cells. This might allow protection and regeneration of beta cells for diabetes remission.

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Michael Sterr
Dr. Michael Sterr

Single Cell Genomics

Single-cell based methods are key technologies to uncover the cellular complexity of biological systems, answering important and longstanding biological questions. Single-cell genomics allows to better characterize different cell types and cellular states, identify rare cell populations, and reconstruct developmental trajectories.

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Ingo Burtscher
Dr. Silvia Schirge

Endoderm Development and Transgenic Unit

We are using various mouse models to address questions in the field of endoderm and pancreas development, endocrine lineage formation in gut and pancreas as well as beta-cell maturation and regeneration

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brain slice-screenshot-3_Shiqi Zhang for IDR-H website
Helmholtz Munich | ©Shiqi Zhang
Prof. Susanna Hofmann

Independent Group "Woman and Diabetes"

Our mission is to investigate the molecular mechanisms causing gender and sex specific differences in diabetic dyslipidemia and to develop novel personalised treatment strategies.

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IDR Management

The IDR Management team covers the administrative and organisational aspects of all scientific projects at IDR. We accompany projects from the planning phase, during performance until reporting and are the contact partners to grantors and authorities.
We ensure the feasibility and scientific quality of the projects, availability of staff, funding and legal approval in close collaboration with the HMGU administrative departments. These include; Finance, Human Resources, Legal & Compliance, Communications & Strategic Relations, Innovation and Strategy/ Programs/ Resources, and the Core Facilities for Antibody and Laboratory Animal Sciences.

Who we are

IDR_Ana Gabriela Acosta Montalvo 1

Dr. Ana Gabriela Acosta Montalvo

Postdoc Insulin/IGF signalling
Melis Akgün Canan

Melis Akgün Canan

PhD student - Stem cell research
Porträt Lisa Appel

Lisa Appel

Technical Assistant - Transgenic Unit

Susanne Badeke

TA Islet Biology
IDR_Mostafa Bakhti_1

Dr. Mostafa Bakhti

Group Leader Beta Cell Development and Regeneration View profile

Dr. Carolina Ballester-López

m4 Award Scientific Project Manager
Porträt Emily Baumgart

Emily Baumgart

Lab Manager and Technical Assistant Stem Cell Group
Porträt Sheya Bhattacharya

Sreya Bhattacharya

PhD Student - Insulin/IGF signalling

PhD student

Porträt Sara Bilekova

Sára Bileková

PhD student - Insulin/IGF signalling
Ingo Burtscher-2

Dr. Ingo Burtscher

Deputy Director and Group Leader Stem cell research View profile

Dr. Mara Catani

Scientific Project and Grant Manager
IDR_Gea Ciccarelli

Dr. Gea Ceccarelli

Guest Scientist Insulin/IGF signalling
Prisca Chapouton Portrait No. 2

Dr. Prisca Chapouton

Senior Scientist Insulin/IGF signalling

Perla Cota

PhD Student - Beta cell development and regeneration

Postdoc

Dr Corinna Cozzitorto

Postdoc Stem Cell Research
Porträt Sebastian Cucuruz

Sebastian Cucuruz

TA
Oliver Czarnecki_portrait 2

Oliver Czarnecki

PhD student - Beta cell development and regeneration

Postdoc Insulin/IGF signalling

DR Alessandro Dema

Postdoc Insulin/IGF signalling

Kerstin Diemer

Lab Manager IDR-L and technical assistant - Islet Biology
Porträt Sophia Dinges

Sophia Dinges

PhD Student

Carola Eggert

Technical Assistant - Insulin/IGF signalling

Falk Farkas

PhD Student - Intestinal Stem Cell Research
Porträt Jin Feng

Jin Feng

PhD Student - Insulin/IGF signalling
Porträt Thomas Floss

Prof. Dr. Thomas Floss

Porträt Sonja Frevel

Sonja Frevel

Personal Assistant IDR-H, budget and project coordinator

Gabriele Glaser

Lab Assistant
Ekin Gökce Cicek 1

Ekin Gökce Cicek

PhD student Islet Biology
IDR_Tobias Greisle Portrait 2

Tobias Greisle

PhD student - Intestinal Stem Cell Research
Porträt Susanna Hofmann

Prof. Dr. med. Susanna Hofmann

Independent Group Leader "Women and Diabetes" (IDR-H) View profile

Jessica Jaki

Technical Assistant - Beta cell development and regeneration
Porträt Chang Ying Jing

Changying Jing

PhD student - Beta Cell Development and Regeneration

Sini Susan Joseph

Postdoc
Porträt Christos Karampelias

Dr. Christos Karampelias

Postdoc - Islet Biology

Postdoc

Dr. Kei Kozawa

Martin Kraetzl 2

Martin Kraetzl

PhD Student Intestinal Stem Cell Research
Porträt Ines Kunze

Ines Kunze

Technical Assistant - Intestinal stem cells
Prof. Dr. Heiko Lickert

Prof. Dr. Heiko Lickert

Institute Director and Group Leader Insulin/IGF signalling in metabolism and growth & Islet Biology View profile
Porträt Mireira Molina

Mireia Molina van den Bosch

PhD Student - Islet Biology and Intestinal Stem Cell Research

Timucin Öztürk

Technical Assistant - Beta Cell Replacement

Nicole Katarina Rogers

PhD student - Beta cell replacement

Lama Saber

PhD Student - Beta cell development and regeneration

Dr. Silvia Schirge

Transgenic Unit Project Leader

Dr. Elke Schlüssel

Scientific Project and Compliance Manager
Porträt Minas Schwager

Minas Schwager

PhD Student - Single Cell Analysis

Leopold Schomann

PhD Student
Porträt Eunike Setyono; Hintergrund: grau

Eunike Setyono

PhD student - Beta cell replacement
Michael Sterr Portrait 1

Dr. Michael Sterr

Single Cell Core Facility Project Leader View profile
Porträt Yaqi Sun

Yaqi Sun

PhD Student

Donna Thomson

Personal Assistant IDR-L / Office and Administrative Project Manager
Porträt Marc Walter

Dr. Marc Walter

Scientific Manager and Coordinator IDR-H
Porträt Thomas Worring

Thomas Worring

TA

Pei Xu

PhD Student - Insulin/IGF signalling

Dr. Kaiyuan Yang

Post Doc - Islet Biology
Porträt Robby Tom

Dr. Robby Zachariah Tom

Post Doc
Porträt Yao Zhang

Yao Zhang

PhD Student - Woman and Diabetes

Shiqi Zhang

PhD Student
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Contact us!

Donna Thomson

Personal Assistant IDR-L / Office and Administrative Project Manager

Campus Neuherberg, building 3620, room 306b