Felix Winter

Using a mathematical model of the brain’s energy metabolism, I reveal an Alzheimer's specific alteration in the measure that is used to diagnose patients in the clinic.

PhD Students (until 2017-01-01)

Research interest

In-vivo regulation of Aβ abundance / Energy-metabolism and brain imaging in AD
"I am interested in the aethiopathology of the Alzheimer's disease."

Protein aggregation is a major hallmark of many neurodegenerative diseases. In Alzheimer's disease (AD) the deposition of the protein Amyloid-β (Aβ) is increased and its aggregation leads to cognitive impairment. The question we focus on is: Which mechanisms govern the production and degradation of Aβ inside the brain? How can these mechanisms be influenced to impede or delay disease progression? Which of these mechanisms can be attributed to the process of aging?

Neurodegenerative diseases like AD mostly occur at older ages. If it is possible to understand the underlying mechanisms, this may shed light on the question "What does `getting old` mean in a biological sense?".

We established a mathematical model to capture the in vivo dynamics of Aβ aggregation in mouse-models relating to the regulation of different transmembrane transport proteins. Based on this model the influence on different strategies of altering the Aβ, abundance on AD initiation can be examined. Once the key features of AD progression are worked out we will analyse their relation to aging.

Understanding the aethiopoathology of Alzheimer's disease and working out the inherent connection to the process of aging observed in biological organisms promises insights important for both basic aging research and questions specific for the treatment of the Alzheimer's disease.

Academic background

2013 - present Researcher at ASD GmbH in the VPH Dare@IT project.
2009 - present PhD-Student in Systems Biology, funded by the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Research, Department Aging Sciences and Humanities
University of Rostock, Rostock/Germany
2001 - 2009 Diplom in Business Mathematics (Dipl. Math. oec., comparable to a masters degree)
University of Rostock, Rostock/Germany

Selected publications

Mathematical analysis of the influence of brain metabolism on the BOLD signal in Alzheimer’s disease

Winter F, Bludszuweit-Philipp C, Wolkenhauer O

Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow & Metabolism

Enabling multiscale modeling in systems medicine

Wolkenhauer O, Auffray C, Brass O, Clairambault J, Deutsch A, Drasdo D, Gervasio F, Preziosi L, et al.

Genome Medicine 2014, 6:21

Cooperative gene regulation by microRNA pairs and their identification using a computational workflow

Schmitz U, Lai X, Winter F, Wolkenhauer O, Vera J, Gupta S

Nucleic Acids Research 2014, 42 (12): 7539-7552,

Parameter Identifiability and Sensitivity Analysis Predict Targets for Enhancement of STAT1 Activity in Pancreatic Cancer and Stellate Cells

Rateitschak K, Winter F, Lange F, Jaster R, Wolkenhauer O (2012)

PLOS Computational Biology 8: e1002815

Cerebral amyloid-beta proteostasis is regulated by the membrane transport protein ABCC1 in mice

Krohn M, Lange C, Hofrichter J, Scheffler K, Stenzel J, Steffen J, Schumacher T, Bräunung T, Plath A S, Alfen F, Schmidt A, Winter F, Rateitschak K, Wree A, Gsponer J, Walker L C, Pahnke J (2011)

Journal of Clinical Investigation 121: 3924-3931

Reproducibility of model-based results in systems biology

D Waltemath, R Henkel, F Winter, O Wolkenhauer

In: Systems Biology: Integrative Biology and Simulation Tools 1, pp 301-320. Prokop A, Csukas B (eds) Springer (2013)

Mathematical modelin of protein aggregation and transport in Alzheimer's disease

Winter F, Krohn M, Lange C, Pahnke J, Wolkenhauer O, Rateitschak K

12th International Conference on Systems Biology (ICSB), Heidelberg/Mannheim, Germany, 28 August - 1 September 2011

Venue: Heidelberg/Mannheim, Germany

A power-law model to describe the aggregation of Beta-Amyloid and its transport across the Blood-Brain barrier based on quantitative data from Alzheimer mouse models

Winter F, Krohn M, Lange C, Wolkenhauer O, Rateitschak K, Pahnke J

2nd International workshop on systems biology, Hamilton, Ireland, August 2008

Venue: Hamilton, Ireland