CIN Members

In 2007, the CIN started with 25 principal investigators as cluster applicants, as stipulated in the DFG call for bids. When the CIN cluster was approved further  scientists from a range of institutions were incorporated, to make up the 48 'founding members' of the CIN. Since the beginning of 2014 the CIN has consisted of over 80 scientists in total. The membership process involves an application to the steering committee in which the candidate outlines his or her scientific profile and submits a list of publications. The committee's decision is based purely on the scientific excellence of each candidate.

CIN Members

Dr. Maria Kukley

Organization: Werner Reichardt Centre for Integrative Neuroscience


Otfried-Müller-Str. 25
72076 Tübingen

Phone number: +49 (0)7071 29 89180

Department: CIN Neuron-Glia Interaction

Position: Head of Research Group

Area: CIN Members

Scientific topic: Neuron-Glia Interaction

Field of Research

We are interested in understanding the mechanisms by which neurons and glial cells interact to support normal communication in the nervous system. Directed action potential dependent fusion of neurotransmitter-filled vesicles occurs at synapses, points of contact between neurons, and enables rapid intercellular signalling in the brain. We have recently shown that action potentials also induce fast release of neurotransmitter onto glial cells in white matter - area of the brain that does not contain synapses. Ongoing projects in the lab include characterisation of this novel neuron-glia signalling during development, elucidating mechanisms and exploring functional role of neurotransmitter release onto glial cells in white matter. We are also investigating possible contribution to neurotransmitter release in white matter to the pathophysiology of demyelinating disorders of the nervous system.


Whole-Cell Patch-Clamp recordings of glial cells and neurons in brain slices, Electrical Stimulation of axons in brain slices, Flash-Photolysis of caged compounds, Immunohistochemistry, Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy


brain imaging; degeneration / regeneration; developmental neurobiology; glia; molecular & cellular neurobiology; neuro-physiology

  1. Gallo V, Mangin JM, Kukley M, Dietrich D (2008). Synapses on NG2-expressing progenitors in the brain: multiple functions? J Physiol. 586(16):3767-81. 
  2. Kukley M, Kiladze M, Tognatta R, Hans M, Swandulla D, Schramm J, Dietrich D (2008). Glial cells are born with synapses. FASEB J. 22(8):2957-69.
  3. Kukley M, Capetillo-Zarate E, Dietrich D (2007). Vesicular glutamate release from axons in white matter. Nat Neurosci. 10(3):311-20.