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Prof. Dr. med. Alexander Pfeifer

of the Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology
Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-University Bonn
BMZ 2G014/15
Sigmund-Freud-Str. 25
D-53105 Bonn

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Tel: +49-228-287-51300/51302
Fax: +49-228-287-51301

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Pfeifer group

Prof. Dr. med. Alexander Pfeifer


Key research interests

  • NO/cGMP-signaling cascade – cGMP-dependent proteinkinase; cell- and animal models
  • Metabolism: differentiation and function of brown and white adipose tissue
  • Viral vectors: focus lentiviral vectors; lentiviral transgenesis (generation of transgenic animals using lentiviral gene transfer)
  • RNA-interference: siRNA-based therapies; the role of microRNAs in neurodegeneration und stem cell differentiation
  • Neurodegeneration – development of new therapies
  • Drug targeting - nanomedicine


  • Viral vector platform
  • Model systems: lentiviral transgenesis; knockout-mice
  • State-of-the-art molecular biology
  • Stem cells (MSCs, ES cells)

Important publications


  • Gnad T, Scheibler S, von Kügelgen I, Scheele C, Kilic A, Glöde A, Hoffmann LS, Reverte L, Horn P, Mutlu S, El-Tayeb A, Kranz M, Deuther-Conrad W, Brust P,  Lidell ME, Betz M, Enerbäck S, Schrader J, Yegutkin GG, Müller CE, Pfeifer A (2014). Adenosine activates brown adipose tissue and recruits beige adipocytes via A2A receptors. Nature, doi: 10.1038/nature13816

  • Chen Y, Siegel F, Kipschull S, Haas B, Fröhlich H, Meister G, Pfeifer A. miR-155 regulates differentiation of brown and beige adipocytes via a bistable circuit.
    Nat Commun. 2013 Apr 23;4:1769. doi: 10.1038/ncomms2742.[fulltext]
  • Mitschke MM., Hoffmann LS., Gnad T., Scholz D., Kruithoff K., Mayer P., Haas B., Sassmann A., Pfeifer A., Kilic A. (2013). Increased cGMP promotes healthy expansion and browning of white adipose tissue. The FASEB Journal, January 9 [Epub ahead of print]
  • Jennissen K., Siegel F., Liebig-Gonglach M., Hermann MR., Kipschull S., van Dooren S., Kunz WS., Fässler R., Pfeifer A. (2012). A VASP-Rac-Soluble Guanyly Cyclase Pathway Controls cGMP Production in Adipocytes. Science Signaling 5 (239), ra62. [free full text] [abstract] [summary]
  • Haas, B., Jennissen K., Mayer, P., Scholz, D., Berriel Diaz, M., Bloch, W., Herzig, S., Fässler, R., Pfeifer A. (2009). Protein kinase G controls brown fat cell differentiation and mitochondrial biogenesis. Science Signaling 2009; Dec 1;2(99):ra78. [free full text]   [abstract]  [summary] [podcast]
  • Hofmann, A., Wenzel, D., Becher, UM., Freitag, DF., Klein, AM., Eberbeck, D., Schulte, M., Zimmermann, K., Bergemann, C., Gleich, B., Roell, W., Weyh, T., Trahms, L., Nickenig, G., Fleischmann, BK., Pfeifer, A. (2009). Combined targeting of lentiviral vectors and positioning of transduced cells by magnetic nanoparticles. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U S A. 2009; 106(1): 44-9
  • Massoumi, R., Chmielarska, K., Hennecke, K., Pfeifer, A., & Fässler, R.  (2006). Cyld inhibits tumor cell proliferation by blocking Bcl-3-dependent NF-kB signalling. Cell 2006; 125(4): 665-77.
  •  Pfeifer, A., Eigenbrod, S., Al-Khadra, S., Hofmann, A., Mitteregger, G., Moser, M., Bertsch, U., & Kretzschmar, H. (2006). Lentivector-mediated RNAi efficiently suppresses PrP and prolongs survival of scrapie-infected mice. Journal of Clinical Investigation. 2006; 116(12):3204-10
  • Pfeifer, A., Ikawa, M., Dayn, Y., & Verma, I.M. (2002). Transgenesis by lentiviral vectors: Lack of gene silencing in mammalian embryonic stem cells and preimplantation embryos. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 2002; 99:2140-2145.

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