Prof. Dr. Christoph Korbmacher

Institut für Zelluläre und Molekulare Physiologie
Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
Waldstr. 6
D-91054 Erlangen

Tel: +49-(0)9131-8522301
Fax: +49-(0)9131-8522770

Research areas:

  • Electrophysiology and molecular biology of renal ion channels
  • Channelopathies and molecular mechanisms of ion channel regulation
  • Pathophysiology of the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC)

Ion channels are involved in the highly selective and regulated control of ion fluxes across apical and basolateral membranes of renal epithelial cells. The research group of Professor Korbmacher is particularly interested in ion channels of the distal tubule and collecting duct which play a major role for the fine tuning of renal fluid and electrolyte handling. The study of molecular mechanisms involved in epithelial ion channel regulation is likely to be relevant to understand a range of diseases (e.g. cystic fibrosis, kidney stones, high arterial blood pressure, salt loosing syndromes). 

The present focus of the research group of Prof. Korbmacher is a low conductance amiloride-sensitive epithelial Na+ channel (ENaC), which is the rate-limiting transport step for Na+ re-absorption in the distal nephron.  Its function and appropriate regulation is critically important for the maintenance of body sodium balance and consequently for the long term regulation of arterial blood pressure. 

A better understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in ENaC regulation will hopefully provide novel insights into the physiology and pathophysiology of arterial hypertension. This ultimately may lead to new diagnostic and therapeutic concepts.