Animal physiologyDr. Frank Möhrlen

We are working on several aspects of sensory transduction and investigate molecular mechanisms used by sensory neurons to translate external stimuli into the electrical signals the brain needs to interpret the outer world.

We study proteins that are involved in the transduction process, and we are particularly interested in ion channels. Our lab work is, therefore, mainly electrophysiology (patch clamp), protein biochemistry, fluorescence imaging and immunohistochemistry. We use these techniques to study structure and function of ion channels and their expression patterns in sensory neurons. Our current focus is on olfactory sensory neurons and on nociceptors, the sensory neurons that mediate the perception of pain. More information about our research and methods can be found on molekulare-physiologie.org.

Frank Möhrlen


  •  Genovese F, Bauersachs HG, Gräßer I, Kupke J, Magin L, Daiber P, Nakajima J, Möhrlen F, Messlinger K, Frings S. (2016). Possible role of calcitonin gene-related peptide in trigeminal modulation of glomerular microcircuits of the rodent olfactory bulb. Eur J Neurosci. 45: 587-600  
  • Bartels MF, Winterhalter PR, Yu J, Liu Y, Lommel M, Möhrlen F, Hu H, Feizi T, Westerlind U, Ruppert T, Strahl S. (2016). Protein O-Mannosylation in the Murine Brain: Occurrence of Mono-O-Mannosyl Glycans and Identification of New Substrates. PLoS One. 11(11):e0166119.
  • Genovese F, Thews M, Möhrlen F, Frings S (2016). Properties of an optogenetic model for olfactory stimulation. Journal of Physiology   595: 3501-3516
  • Zhang W, Schmelzeisen S, Parthier D, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2015). Anoctamin Calcium-Activated Chloride Channels May Modulate Inhibitory Transmission in the Cerebellar Cortex. PLoS One. 10(11):e0142160.
  • Vocke K, Dauner K, Hahn A, Ulbrich A, Broecker J, Keller S, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2013). Calmodulin-dependent activation and inactivation of anoctamin calcium-gated chloride channels. J Gen Physiol. 142(4):381-404.
  • Dauner K(1), Möbus C, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2013). Targeted expression of anoctamin calcium-activated chloride channels in rod photoreceptor terminals of the rodent retina. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 54(5):3126-36.
  • Daiber P(1), Genovese F, Schriever VA, Hummel T, Möhrlen F, Frings S. (2012). Neuropeptide receptors provide a signalling pathway for trigeminal modulation of olfactory transduction. Eur J Neurosci. 37(4):572-82.  
  • Dauner K(1), Lissmann J, Jeridi S, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2012). Expression patterns of anoctamin 1 and anoctamin 2 chloride channels in the mammalian nose. Cell Tissue Res. 347(2):327-41.
  • Ungerer N(1), Mücke N, Broecker J, Keller S, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2011). Distinct binding properties distinguish LQ-type calmodulin-binding domains in cyclic nucleotide-gated channels. Biochemistry. 50(15):3221-8.
  • Hengl T(1), Kaneko H, Dauner K, Vocke K, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2010). Molecular components of signal amplification in olfactory sensory cilia. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 107(13):6052-7.
  • Waldeck C(1), Vocke K, Ungerer N, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2009). Activation and desensitization of the olfactory cAMP-gated transduction channel: identification of functional modules. J Gen Physiol. 134(5):397-408.
  • Klimmeck D(1), Daiber PC, Brühl A, Baumann A, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2009). Bestrophin 2: an anion channel associated with neurogenesis in chemosensory systems. J Comp Neurol. 515(5):585-99.  
  • Mayer U(1), Küller A, Daiber PC, Neudorf I, Warnken U, Schnölzer M, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2009). The proteome of rat olfactory sensory cilia. Proteomics. 9(2):322-34.
  • Morcos M(1), Du X, Pfisterer F, Hutter H, Sayed AA, Thornalley P, Ahmed N, Baynes J, Thorpe S, Kukudov G, Schlotterer A, Bozorgmehr F, El Baki RA, Stern D, Moehrlen F, Ibrahim Y, Oikonomou D, Hamann A, Becker C, Zeier M, Schwenger V, Miftari N, Humpert P, Hammes HP, Buechler M, Bierhaus A, Brownlee M, Nawroth PP. (2008). Glyoxalase-1 prevents mitochondrial protein modification and enhances lifespan in Caenorhabditis elegans. Aging Cell. 7(2):260-9.
  • Funk K(1), Woitecki A, Franjic-Würtz C, Gensch T, Möhrlen F, Frings S. (2008). Modulation of chloride homeostasis by inflammatory mediators in dorsal root ganglion neurons. Mol Pain. 4:32.
  • Klimmeck D(1), Mayer U, Ungerer N, Warnken U, Schnölzer M, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2007). Calcium-signaling networks in olfactory receptor neurons. Neuroscience. 151(3):901-12.
  • Mayer U(1), Ungerer N, Klimmeck D, Warnken U, Schnölzer M, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2007). Proteomic analysis of a membrane preparation from rat olfactory sensory cilia. Chem Senses. 33(2):145-62.
  • Gilbert D(1), Franjic-Würtz C, Funk K, Gensch T, Frings S, Möhrlen F. (2007). Differential maturation of chloride homeostasis in primary afferent neurons of the somatosensory system. Int J Dev Neurosci. 25(7):479-89.
  • Gilbert D(1), Funk K, Dekowski B, Lechler R, Keller S, Möhrlen F, Frings S, Hagen V. (2007). Caged capsaicins: New tools for the examination of TRPV1 channels in somatosensory neurons. Chembiochem. 8(1):89-97.
  • Kaneko H(1), Möhrlen F, Frings S. (2006). Calmodulin contributes to gating control in olfactory calcium-activated chloride channels. J Gen Physiol. 127(6):737-48.
  • Teo R(1), Möhrlen F, Plickert G, Müller WA, Frank U. (2005). An evolutionary conserved role of Wnt signaling in stem cell fate decision. Dev Biol. 289(1):91-9.
  • Guduric-Fuchs J(1), Möhrlen F, Frohme M, Frank U. (2004). A fragile X mental retardation-like gene in a cnidarian. Gene. 343(2):231-8.
  • Mali B(1), Möhrlen F, Frohme M, Frank U. (2004). A putative double role of a chitinase in a cnidarian: pattern formation and immunity. Dev Comp Immunol. 28(10):973-81.
  • Müller WA(1), Teo R, Möhrlen F. (2004). Patterning a multi-headed mutant in Hydractinia: enhancement of head formation and its phenotypic normalization. Int J Dev Biol. 48(1):9-15.  
  • Möhrlen F(1), Hutter H, Zwilling R. (2003). The astacin protein family in Caenorhabditis elegans. Eur J Biochem. 270(24):4909-20.  
  • Wagner W(1), Möhrlen F, Schnetter W. (2002). Characterization of the proteolytic enzymes in the midgut of the European Cockchafer, Melolontha melolontha (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 32(7):803-14.  
  • Möhrlen F(1), Baus S, Gruber A, Rackwitz HR, Schnölzer M, Vogt G, Zwilling R. (2001). Activation of pro-astacin. Immunological and model peptide studies on the processing of immature astacin, a zinc-endopeptidase from the crayfish Astacus astacus. Eur J Biochem. 268(9):2540-6.