Thomas Oertner - Biography#

Thomas G. Oertner studied Biology at the Albert-Ludwigs University in Freiburg, Germany, from 1989 to 1995, spending a year abroad at the University of Edinburgh, UK. For his diploma work and PhD thesis on the visual system of the blowfly, he moved to Tübingen to work with Prof. Alexander Borst at the Friedrich Miescher Laboratory of the Max-Planck Society. In 1999, he received his doctoral degree (Dr. rer. nat.) from the Eberhard-Karls-University Tübingen. As a postdoc, he worked with Prof. Karel Svoboda at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory on spine calcium signaling and transmitter release statistics (2000-2003).

In 2003, he accepted a research group leader position at the at the Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research (FMI) in Basel, part of the Novartis Research Foundation. During his time as a junior group leader, he also acted as main scientific advisor for the Facility for Advanced Imaging and Microscopy at the FMI. In 2009, he was promoted to Senior Scientist (tenure) at the FMI.

In 2011, he accepted a call from the University of Hamburg to become Director of the newly founded Institute for Synaptic Physiology at the Center for Molecular Neurobiology Hamburg (ZMNH). He is full professor (W3) at the medical faculty of the University of Hamburg and associated member of the MIN faculty (Biology). Since 2013, he is an elected member in the council of the medical faculty. In 2017, he was elected as member of the executive board of the Hamburg Center for Neuroscience (HCNS) and became Co-Director of the Center for Molecular Neurobiology Hamburg (ZMNH).

Over the years, Thomas Oertner has taught the principles and applications of two-photon microscopy and optogenetics to numerous students at summer courses in Woods Hole, Cold Spring Harbor, Lausanne and Bordeaux. He is married to Dr. Christine E. Gee, they have a 10 year old daughter.

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