What we do


We are fully aware that each PhD student starts with a different scientific background. In order to bring you all on the same level of knowledge, our curriculum starts with a mandatory lecture series that introduce you to all LOCOTACT-relevant topics.

The lectures have taken place as interactive seminars via Zoom between January and July 2021. They have been recorded so that everyone who joins our consortium at a later time point can easily catch up in order to aquire a basic knowledge in thyroid hormone (TH) physiology and signaling as well aspects of cardiovascular, brain and liver research.

See here our lecture plan to get a deeper insight into the topics. Please feel free to contact the respective lecturer if you have any questions.

Locotact iRTG - Lectures


DateTopicLecturer (PI)
15.01.21 Regulation of thyroid function Möller
22.01.21 Tancycytes within the endocrine axes Müller-Fielitz
05.02.21 TH receptor signalling - canonical Mittag
12.02.21 TH receptor signalling - noncanonical Möller
19.02.21 TH transporters - biochemistry Zwanziger
26.02.21 Phenotype of TH transporter deficient mice Heuer
05.03.21 Allan-Herndon-Dudley Syndrome (AHDS) Heuer
12.03.21 Novel concepts for the treatment of AHDS Müller
19.03.21 How to determine TH concentrations Köhrle
26.03.21 Relevance and action of TH metabolites Köhrle
16.04.21 TH deiodinases - biochemistry Schomburg
29.04.21 Phenotype of deiodinase deficient mice (4 pm) Wirth
30.04.21 Clinical aspects of TH action in the human organism Führer
07.05.21 Patients ́ derived iPSCs modelling human diseases Kühnen
21.05.21 Epigenetic mechanisms regulating TH signaling Kirchner
28.05.21 Circadian mechanisms Oster
  LOCOTACT RETREAT: 03.-05.06.21  
11.06.21 Ischaemic brain injury Langhauser
02.07.21 Acute and chronic liver failures Lange
09.07.21 Research Data Management & Open Science Rehwald
  Experimental myocardial infarct & heart failure models Lorenz


These monthly seminars take place via Zoom and are divided into two parts:

Journal Club: One recently published paper is presented by one of our iRTG fellows. This will not only help you to be ‘up to date’ with current literature about your research field but you will also learn to critically review publications and transfer this critical thinking to your own projects.

Progress Report: Two iRTG fellows will provide progress reports about their doctoral thesis including an introduction into the topic and methodology. Like this, you can train your presentation skills, receive feedback to your project and exchange information between LOCOTACT researchers at different locotations and in different projects.

iRTG CRC/TR 296 Scientific Seminar: Journal Club and Progress Report 08/2022 - 08/2023

DateJournal Club or
Postdoc Update
Report I
Report II
20.08.21 Alison Naujack Adriana Arrulo Pereira Mona May Langer Anna Molenaar
17.09.21 Andrea Alcaide Martín Nuria López Alcántara Caroline Frädrich Anna Molenaar & Joshua Seifert
22.10.21 Adina Graffunder Lisa Ständer Anna Molenaar Alison Naujack & Adriana Arrulo Pereira
12.11.21 Wiebke Werner Nina Härting Yingfu Chen Andrea Alcaide Martín & Nuri López Alcántara
17.12.21 Daniel Ullrich Joshua Seifert Rajas Sane Caroline Frädrich & Adina Graffunder
21.01.22 Sabrina Assad Christoph Hoppe Philippa Spangenberg Lisa Ständer & Wiebke Werner
18.02.22 Audrey Bresser Stefanie Dörr Androniki Alevyzaki Nina Härting & Yingfu Chen
18.03.22 Livia Hoerner Jonas Rotter Andrea Alcaide Martín Daniel Ullrich & Rajas Sane
29.04.22 Caroline Frädrich Adina Graffunder Alison Naujack  Sabrina Asaad & Christoph Hoppe
20.05.22 Adriana Arrulo Pereira Daniel Ullrich Sabrina Asaad Philippa Spangenberg & Audrey Bresser
24.06.22 Nuria López Alcántara Audrey Bresser Wiebke Werner  Livia Hoerner & Julia Maier
26.08.22 Lisa Ständer Livia Hoerner Julia Maier Stefanie Dörr & Androniki Alevyzaki
16.09.22 Anna Molenaar Sabrina Asaad Wiebke Werner Katharina Kotzur & Jakob Gloge
21.10.22 Nina Härting Larissa Anthofer Tobias Bolte Devon Siemes & Christoph Hoppe
18.11.22 Rajas Sane Katharina Kotzur Jakob Gloge Philippa Spangenberg & Adriana Arrulo Pereira
09.12.22 Yingfu Chen Devon Siemes Elena Schmaler Larissa Anthofer & Tobias Bolte
20.01.23 Christoph Hoppe Sina Stockfisch Adriana Arrulo Pereira Rajas Sane & Joshua Seifert
17.02.23 Matthias Megges Caroline Frädrich Nuria López Alcántara Jonas Rotter & Elena Schmaler
17.03.23 Joshua Seifert Anna Molenaar Lisa Ständer Nuria López Alcántara & Andrea Alcaide Martín
21.04.23 Akila Chandrasekar Nina Härting Joshua Seifert Sina Stockfisch & Stefanie Dörr
12.05.23 Androniki Alevyzaki Yingfu Chen Joshua Seifert Lisa Ständer & Nina Härting
16.06.23 Erick Martinez Rajas Sane Philippa Spangenberg Alison Naujack & Daniel Ullrich
25.08.23 Philippa Spangenberg Androniki Alevyzaki Stefanie Dörr Yingfu Chen & Sabrina Asaad


The iRTG closely collaborates with the local graduate schools at the different CRC locations to offer the maximal variety and flexibility of workshops and soft-skill courses. As many courses are currently conducted digitally, it is in most cases also possible to attend courses at other CRC locations.

All iRTG members who work in projects conducting experiments with lab animals, will have the possibility to obtain a FELASA B certificate in a combined theoretical and practical workshop. Please contact the iRTG coordination if you need further information: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Moreover, we also organize customized closed workshops. In 2021, we offered the following closed workshops:

  • GraphPad Prism Statistics Workshop
  • Basic German Course (ongoing)
  • Scientific Writing Workshop


Working in a CRC/TR means that our iRTG members are spreaded over the whole country. Nevertheless, it is important to be part of a team of fellows who go through the same phases of a doctoral project as you do.

"What is the recipe for successful achievement? To my mind there are just four essential ingredients: Choose a career you love, give it the best there is in you, seize your opportunities, and be a member of the team." – Benjamin Franklin

Therefore, we meet as often as possible with the whole group to strengthen the group dynamics, to exchange ideas and challenges and to have some fun time! 

For example, in November 2021 we met in person for a Scientific Writing Workshop. In the evening, we had the nice opportunity to visit Münster's Christmas Market and enjoyed some tasty Glühwein.

Who we are

iRTG Fellows

Currently, 28 graduate students are enrolled in our iRTG at different locations - among them:

6 PhDs and 2 MDs in Essen

4 PhDs in Lübeck

5 PhDs and 6 MDs in Berlin

1 PhD in Dortmund

2 PhDs in Munich

1 PhD and 1 MD in Leipzig

All PostDocs working in CRC projects are encouraged to join iRTG lectures, seminars and workshops.

Student representatives

Anna Molenaar: PhD student at Helmholtz Munich in the group Neurobiology of Diabetes.

I studied molecular Biotechnology in Freising and I now work on the topic of MCT8 deficiency as a part of project P05. As iRTG speaker I want to make sure that the graduate students stay connected across the various sites that are part of the CRC.

Joshua Seifert: PhD student with a passion for modeling livers in the petri dish to wring some mystery out of pathological lipid metabolism.

I love being versatile, so when I'm not busy cloning and optimizing assays in molecular biology, I'm cheering on my cell cultures and have a soft spot for biomedical data analysis.

Speaker Team

Heike Heuer: Speaker at UDE, Professor for Molecular Thyroidology

Helge Müller-Fielitz: Co-Speaker at UzL, Group Leader - Interaction between Tanycytes and the Hormone Axes

Peter Kühnen: Co-Speaker at Charité, Professor for Experimental Pediatric Endocrinology


Simone de Leve: Scientific Coordinator of the integrated Research Training Group

I am happy to help with any questions regarding our iRTG curriculum and to assist with any kind of problems that arise during your journey to a successful graduation. I am keen to receive feedback to improve our curriculum and activities to ensure optimal scientific conditions for everyone.


irtg logo

Integrated Research Training Group

Prof. Dr. Heike Heuer (Speaker at UDE)

Dr. Helge Müller-Fielitz (Co-Speaker at UzL)

Prof Dr. med. Peter Kühnen (Co-Speaker at Charité)

Our integrated Research Training Group (iRTG) programme aims to provide PhD students, as well as associated MD students and postdocs enrolled in CRC/TR 296 projects with an excellent scientific training and most supportive environment for a successful career in basic and translational thyroid/endocrine research at interfaces with neurology, cardiology and hepatology, giving rise to the next generation of successful endocrine researchers.

Detailed information on our iRTG curriculum can be found here.

flow diagram

The iRTG offers a highly interdisciplinary curriculum at the interface between clinical and basic research

  • to foster the development of young researchers (PhD students & MD students, early career postdocs) to highly qualified and excellent scientists
  • to provide a strong basic and translational education in local control mechanisms of TH action

in close interaction with local graduate schools:

How to apply

Interested in joining our iRTG? Open positions are listed here. Necessary documents for application are: 

1. Please send application form, CV and degree certificates via E-Mail as a single pdf-file to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

 2. Please download the

and send it to your two references; please kindly ask them to e-mail the form directly to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.