Freie Universität Berlin (FU), Germany

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Freie Universität Berlin (FU), Germany

Freie Universität Berlin is a leading research institution with 15 departments and central institutes offering over 150 degree programs across a wide range of subjects. It is one of the German universities successful in all three funding lines in the federal and state Excellence Initiative, thereby receiving additional funding for its institutional future development strategy. 

FU's Institute of Veterinary Biochemistry works on various externally funded projects in interdisciplinary veterinarian research. The main focus of its research lies on (1) biology of reproduction, (2) cell culture systems, (3) in vitro diagnostics and bioassays, (4) feed-mediated reactions within the gastro-intestinal tract and (5) cellular reaction and pathway analysis.

Staff members:

  • Prof. Ralf Einspanier, PhD
  • Jennifer Schoen, PhD
  • Angelika Bondzio, PhD
  • Petra Schulze, PhD student

The team led by Ralf Einspanier has extensive GMO experience in farm animal feeding experiments with subsequent proteome, transciptome and DNA transfer analysis, in the development and culture of both primary & permanent mammalian cells. It has established cell culture systems of different human, rodent as well as farm animal (pig, cattle, sheep) origin (intestinal cells, lymphocytes, epithelial cells) as well as 2/3D cell cultures simulating organ-like structures.

Additionally, methods have been established for short/long-term realtime imaging of viability of cells (xCelligence), for characterization of cellular effects of food/feed components, for global & specific quantification of mRNA/miRNA (microarray, qPCR), for complete cellular proteome profiling (2D-PAGE, MS) and for quantification and localization of specific proteins (ELISA, WB, IHC).

Selected publications:

  • Phipps R, Einspanier R, Faust M (2006) Safety of meat, milk, and eggs from animals fed crops dreived from modern biotechnology. CAST 34.
  • Stumpff F, Bondzio A, Einspanier R, Martens H (2007) Effects of the bacillus thuringiensis toxin Cry1Ab on membrane currents of isolated cells of the ruminal epithelium. Journal of Membrane Biology 219(1-3) 37-47.
  • Bondzio A, Stumpff F, Schön J, Martens H, Einspanier R. (2008) Impact of Bacillus thuringiensis toxin Cry1Ab on rumen epithelial cells (REC) – a new in vitro model for
  • safety assessment of recombinant food compounds. Food and Chemical Toxicology 46, 1976-1984
  • Einspanier R, Flachowsky G (2009) Biotechnology: Potential Absorption and Biological Functions of Digested Fragments of DNA or Proteins in Food Animals Fed Genetically Modified Crops. Encyclopedia of Animal Science, eds. Pond WG & Bell AW.
  • Bondzio A, Gabler C, Badewien-Rentzsch B, Schulze P, Martens H, Einspanier R (2011) Identification of differentially expressed proteins in ruminal epithelium in response to a concentrate-supplemented diet. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol. 301(2), 260-8.