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Fachbereich Angewandte Naturwissenschaften

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Prof. Dr. Mike Althaus

Biologie, insbesondere Physiologie und Neurobiologie


Fachbereich Angewandte Naturwissenschaften, Institut für funktionale Gen-Analytik (IFGA)


  • Molekulare Physiologie von Ionenkanälen und Transportern
  • Epithelialer Ionentransport
  • Regulation des Salzhaushaltes
  • Vergleichende Physiologie und Evolution von Ionenkanälen






von-Liebig-Straße 20

53359, Rheinbach


02241 865 9541



  • Molekulare Physiologie von Ionenkanälen und Transportern
  • Epithelialer Ionentransport
  • Regulation des Salzhaushaltes
  • Vergleichende Physiologie und Evolution von Ionenkanälen



  • Elektrophysiologische Charakterisierung von Ionenkanälen und Transportern (Two-Electrode Voltage-Clamp, Patch-Clamp)
  • Messung von transepithelialen Ionentransportprozessen (Ussing-Kammern)
  • Heterologe Expression von Ionenkanälen und Transportern in Xenopus Oozyten
  • Molekularbiologie, Proteinbiochemie und Zellkulturtechniken





seit 2020 Professor für Biologie, insbesondere Physiologie und Neurobiologie

2017 - 2020 Lecturer in Animal Physiology, Newcastle University, United Kingdom

2016 - 2017 Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter am Institut für Anatomie und Zellbiologie, Universität des Saarlandes, Homburg

2015 - 2016 Vertretungsprofessor in Tierphysiologie, Justus-Liebig-Universität, Gießen

2010 - 2015 Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter am Institut für Tierphysiologie, Justus-Liebig-Universität, Gießen

2006 - 2010 Promotion am Institut für Tierphysiologie, Justus-Liebig-Universität, Gießen

2001 - 2006 Studium der Biologie an der Justus-Liebig-Universität, Gießen


  1. Althaus M, Alvarez de la Rosa, D, Fronius M. ENaC channels. 2023, In: Textbook of Ion Channels Volume II. Editors: Zheng J, Trudeau MC. ISBN 9780367538163. CRC Press.

  2. Maxeiner S, Krasteva-Christ G, Althaus M. Pitfalls of using sequence databases for heterologous expression studies - a technical review. J Physiol. 2023 Feb 10. 

  3. Anderson CMH, Edwards N, Watson AK, Althaus M, Thwaites DT. Reshaping the Binding Pocket of the Neurotransmitter:Solute Symporter (NSS) Family Transporter SLC6A14 (ATB0,+) Selectively Reduces Access for Cationic Amino Acids and Derivatives. Biomolecules. 2022 Oct 1;12(10):1404. 

  4. Lin J, Gettings SM, Talbi K, Schreiber R, Taggart MJ, Preller M, Kunzelmann K, Althaus M, Gray MA. Pharmacological inhibitors of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator exert off-target effects on epithelial cation channels. Pflugers Arch. 2023 Feb;475(2):167-179. 

  5. Althaus M, Lawong RY. Proteolytic ENaC activation in health and disease-a complicated puzzle. Pflugers Arch. 2022 Feb;474(2):177-179. 

  6. Gettings SM, Maxeiner S, Tzika M, Cobain MRD, Ruf I, Benseler F, Brose N, Krasteva-Christ G, Vande Velde G, Schönberger M, Althaus M. Two functional epithelial sodium channel isoforms are present in rodents despite pronounced evolutionary pseudogenisation and exon fusion Molecular Biology and Evolution. 2021, 38(12):5704-5725.

  7. Sheik Z, Wulf M, Friis S, Althaus M, Lynagh T, Pless S. Differential contributions of M1 and pre-M1 to ion selectivity in ASICs and ENaCs. Journal of General Physiology 2021, 153(10):e202112899​

  8. Haq I, Althaus M, Gardner IA, Yeoh HY, Joshi U, Saint-Criq V, Verdon B, Townshend J, O'Brien C, Ben-Hamida M, Thomas M, Bourke S, van der Sluijs P, Braakman I, Ward C, Gray MA, Brodlie M. Clinical and molecular characterisation of the R751L-CFTR mutation. American Journal of Physiology - Lung Physiology 2020, 320(2):L288-L300

  9. Wichmann L and Althaus M. Evolution of epithelial sodium channels - current concepts and hypotheses. American Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology, 2020 319(4): R387-R400.

  10. Hollenhorst M, Jurastow I, Nandigama R, Appenzeller S, Li L, Vogel J, Wiederhold S, Althaus M, Empting M, Altmüller J, Hirsch A, Flockerzi V, Canning B, Saliba A-E, Krasteva-Christ, G. Tracheal brush cells release acetylcholine in response to bitter tastants for paracrine and autocrine signaling. FASEB Journal 2020 34(1):316-332

  11. ​​Feng H, Edwards N, Anderson CMH, Althaus M, Duncan RP, Hsu Y-C, Luetje CW, Price DRG, Wilson ACC, Thwaites DT. Trading amino acids at the aphid–Buchnera symbiotic interface Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A . 2019. 116(32):16003-16011

  12. ​Wichmann L, Dulai JS, Marles-Wright J, Maxeiner S, Szczesniak PP, Manzini I, Althaus M. An extracellular acidic cleft confers profound H+-sensitivity to epithelial sodium channels containing the δ-subunit in Xenopus laevis  Journal of Biological Chemistry 2019. 294(33):12507-12520. 

  13. ​Kandel C,  Schmidt P, Perniss A, Keshavarz M, Scholz P, Osterloh S, Althaus M, Kummer W, Deckmann K. ENaC in cholinergic brush cells. Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology, doi: 10.3389/fcell.2018.00089

  14. ​Bakshani CR, Morales AL, Althaus M, Wilcox MD, Pearson JP, Bythell JC, Burgess, JG. Evolutionary conservation of the antimicrobial function of mucus: a first defence against infection. NPJ Biofilms and Microbiomes. Volume 4, Article number: 14 (2018) 

  15. ​Wichmann L, Vowinkel KS, Perniss A, Manzini I, Althaus M.Incorporation of the δ-subunit into the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) generates protease-resistant ENaCs in Xenopus laevis. Journal of Biological Chemistry 2018, 4;293(18):6647-6658

  16. ​​Zakrzewicz A, Richter K, Agné A, Wilker S, Siebers K, Fink B, Krasteva-Christ G, Althaus M, Padberg W, Hone AJ, McIntosh JM, Grau V. Canonical and Novel Non-Canonical Cholinergic Agonists Inhibit ATP-Induced Release of Monocytic Interleukin-1β via Different Combinations of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Subunits α7, α9 and α10. Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience 2017, 11, 189.

  17. ​Keshavarz M, Schwarz H, Hartmann P, Wiegand S, Skill M, Althaus M, Kummer W, Krasteva-Christ G. Caveolin-1: functional insights into its role in muscarine- and serotonine-induced smooth muscle constriction in murine airways. Frontiers in Physiology 2017, 8, 295.

  18. ​Perniss A, Preiss K, Nier M, Althaus M.Hydrogen sulfides stimulates CFTR in Xenopus oocytes by activation of the cAMP/PKA signalling axis. Scientific Reports 2017, 7, 3517.

  19. ​​Pouokam E, Althaus M. Epithelial Electrolyte Transport Physiology and the Gasotransmitter Hydrogen Sulfide. Oxid Med Cell Longev 2016, 2016, 4723416.

  20. ​Krause NC, Kutsche HS, Santangelo F, DeLeon ER, Dittrich NP, Olson KR, Althaus M. Hydrogen sulfide contributes to hypoxic inhibition of airway transepithelial sodium absorption. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 2016, 311(3), R607-17.

  21. ​Richter K, Mathes V, Fronius M, Althaus M, Hecker A, Krasteva-Christ G, Padberg W, Hone AJ, McIntosh JM, Zakrzewicz A, Grau V. Phosphocholine - an agonist of metabotropic but not of ionotropic functions of α9-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Sci Rep. 2016 Jun 28;6:28660

  22. ​​Bell A, Althaus M, Diener M. Communication between mast cells and rat submucosal neurons. Pflugers Arch - Eur J Physiol 2015, 467(8), 1809-23.

  23. ​Perniss A, Wolf A, Wichmann L, Schönberger M, Althaus M. Evans Blue is not a suitable inhibitor of the epithelial sodium channel δ-subunit. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2015, 466(3), 468–474.

  24. ​Agné AM, Baldin JP, Benjamin AR, Orogo-Wenn MC, Wichmann L, Olson KR, Walters DV, Althaus M. Hydrogen sulfide decreases β-adrenergic agonist-stimulated lung liquid clearance by inhibiting ENaC-mediated transepithelial sodium absorption. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 2015, 308(7), R636-49.

  25. ​​Erb A, Althaus M. Actions of hydrogen sulfide on sodium transport processes across native distal lung epithelia (Xenopus laevis). PLoS One 2014, 9(6), e100971.

  26. ​Deckmann K, Filipski K, Krasteva-Christ G, Fronius M, Althaus M, Rafiq A, Papadakis T, Renno L, Jurastow I, Wessels L, Wolff M, Schütz B, Weihe E, Chubanov V, Gudermann T, Klein J, Bschleipfer T, Kummer W. Bitter triggers acetylcholine release from polymodal urethral chemosensory cells and bladder reflexes. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2014, 111(22), 8287-92.

  27. ​Schönberger M, Althaus M, Fronius M, Clauss W, Trauner D. Controlling epithelial sodium channels with light using photoswitchable amilorides. Nat Chem 2014, 6(8), 712-9.

  28. ​​Althaus M. ENaC inhibitors and airway re-hydration in cystic fibrosis: state of the art.Curr Mol Pharmacol 2013, 6(1), 3-12.

  29. ​Althaus M, Clauss WG. Gasotransmitters: novel regulators of ion channels and transporters. Front Physiol 2013, 4, 27.

  30. ​Schoenberger M, Althaus M. Novel small molecule epithelial sodium channel inhibitors as potential therapeutics in cystic fibrosis - a patent evaluation. Expert Opin Ther Pat 2013, 23(10), 1383-9.

  31. ​Wesch D, Althaus M, Miranda P, Cruz-Muros I, Fronius M, González-Hernández T, Clauss WG, Alvarez-de-la-Rosa D, Giraldez T. Differential N termini in epithelial Na+ channel δ-subunit isoforms modulate channel trafficking to the membrane. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol 2012, 302(6), C868-79.

  32. ​Althaus M. Gasotransmitters: novel regulators of epithelial na(+) transport? Front Physiol 2012, 3, 83.

  33. ​Althaus M, Urness KD, Clauss WG, Baines DL, Fronius M. The gasotransmitter hydrogen sulphide decreases Na⁺ transport across pulmonary epithelial cells. Br J Pharmacol 2012, 166(6), 1946-63.

  34. ​Krumm P, Giraldez T, Alvarez-de-la-Rosa D, Clauss WG, Fronius M, Althaus M. Thiol-reactive compounds from garlic inhibit the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC). Bioorg Med Chem 2012, 20(13), 3979-84.

  35. ​Fronius M, Clauss WG, Althaus M. Why Do We have to Move Fluid to be Able to Breathe? Front Physiol 2012, 3, 146.

  36. ​​Althaus M, Clauss WG, Fronius M. Amiloride-sensitive sodium channels and pulmonary edema. Pulm Med 2011, 2011, 830320.​

  37. Althaus M, Pichl A, Clauss WG, Seeger W, Fronius M, Morty RE. Nitric oxide inhibits highly selective sodium channels and the Na+/K+-ATPase in H441 cells. Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol 2011, 44(1), 53-65.

  38. ​Fronius M, Bogdan R, Althaus M, Morty RE, Clauss WG. Epithelial Na+ channels derived from human lung are activated by shear force. Respir Physiol Neurobiol 2010, 170(1), 113-9.

  39. ​Wesch D, Miranda P, Afonso-Oramas D, Althaus M, Castro-Hernández J, Dominguez J, Morty RE, Clauss W, González-Hernández T, Alvarez-de-la-Rosa D, Giraldez T. The neuronal-specific SGK1.1 kinase regulates {delta}-epithelial Na+ channel independently of PY motifs and couples it to phospholipase C signaling. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol 2010, 299(4), C779-90.

  40. ​​Althaus M, Fronius M, Buchäckert Y, Vadász I, Clauss WG, Seeger W, Motterlini R, Morty RE. Carbon monoxide rapidly impairs alveolar fluid clearance by inhibiting epithelial sodium channels. Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol 2009, 41(6), 639-50.​

  41. ​Althaus M, Bogdan R, Clauss WG, Fronius M. Mechano-sensitivity of epithelial sodium channels (ENaCs): laminar shear stress increases ion channel open probability. FASEB J 2007, 21(10), 2389-99.