Dr. rer. nat. Christoph Brenker

Regenerative Biomedicine
Centre of Reproductive Medicine and Andrology
Albert-Schweitzer-Campus 1, Geb. D11
48149 Münster
Tel. +49 (0)251 83-58240
E-Mail Dr. Christoph Brenker

  • Scientific career

    Since 2015 Senior Scientist at the Center of Reproductive Medicine and Andrology (CeRA), Münster, Germany
    2013-2015 Post-doctoral researcher at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Bonn, Germany
    2011-2013 Post-doctoral researcher at the center of advanced european studies and research (caesar), Bonn, Germany
    2008-2011 PhD at the center of advanced european studies and research (caesar), Bonn, Germany
    2002-2008 Studies of Physics (Diploma) at the University of Bonn, Germany
  • Publications

    Young, S.*, Schiffer, C.*, Wagner, A., Patz, J., Potapenko, A., Herrmann, L., Nordhoff, V., Pock, T., Krallmann, C., Stallmeyer, B., Röpke, A., Kierzek, M., Biagioni, C., Wang, T., Haalck, L., Deuster, D., Hansen, J. N., Wachten, D., Risse, B., Behre, H. M., Schlatt, S., Kliesch, S., Tüttelmann, F., Brenker, C., Strünker, T. (2023) "Unexplained infertility is frequently caused by defective CatSper function preventing sperm from penetrating the egg coat" MedRxiv 2023.03.23.23286813, doi.org/10.1101/2023.03.23.23286813
    Schneider, S., Kovacevic, A., Mayer, M, Dicke, A. K., Arévalo, L., Koser, S. A., Hansen, J. N., Young, S., Brenker, C., Kliesch, S., Wachten, D., Kirfel, G., Strünker, T., Tüttelmann, F., Schorle, H., (2023) "Cylicins are a structural component of the sperm calyx being indispensable for male fertility in mice and human" Elife; reviewed preprint doi.org/10.7554/eLife.86100.1
    Aprea I, Wilken A, Krallmann C, Nöthe-Menchen T, Olbrich H, Loges NT, Dougherty GW, Bracht D, Brenker C, Kliesch S, Strünker T, Tüttelmann F, Raidt J, Omran H. (2023) "Pathogenic gene variants in CCDC39, CCDC40, RSPH1, RSPH9, HYDIN, and SPEF2 cause defects of sperm flagella composition and male infertility" Front Genet. 2023 Feb 17;14:1117821. doi.org/10.3389/fgene.2023.1117821. eCollection 2023. PMID: 36873931
    Schierling T, Tosi B, Eisenhardt C, Reining S, Daniliuc CG, Brenker C, Strünker T, Wünsch B. (2022) "Synthesis and Functional Characterization of Novel RU1968-Derived CatSper Inhibitors with Reduced Stereochemical Complexity" ACS Pharmacol Transl Sci. 2022 Dec 2;6(1):115-127. doi.org/10.1021/acsptsci.2c00188. eCollection 2023 Jan 13. PMID: 36654752
    Jeschke JK, Biagioni C, Schierling T, Wagner IV, Börgel F, Schepmann D, Schüring A, Kulle AE, Holterhus PM, von Wolff M, Wünsch B, Nordhoff V, Strünker T, Brenker C. (2021) "The Action of Reproductive Fluids and Contained Steroids, Prostaglandins, and Zn2+ on CatSper Ca2+ Channels in Human Sperm." Front Cell Dev Biol. 2021 Jul 26;9:699554. doi.org/10.3389/fcell.2021.699554.
    Kierzek M, Deal PE, Miller EW, Mukherjee S, Wachten D, Baumann A, Kaupp UB, Strünker T, Brenker C. (2021) "Simultaneous recording of multiple cellular signaling events by frequency- and spectrally-tuned multiplexing of fluorescent probes." Elife 2021 Dec 3;10:e63129. doi.org/10.7554/eLife.63129.
    Rahban, R., Rehfeld, A., Schiffer, C., Brenker, C., Egberg Palme, D., Wang, T., Lorenz, J., Almstrup, K., Skakkebaek, N., Strünker, T., Nef, S. (2021) "The antidepressant Sertraline inhibits CatSper Ca2+ channels in human sperm" Human Reproduction, doi.org/10.1093/humrep/deab190
    Balbach, M., Hamzeh, H., Jikeli, J. F., Brenker, C., Schiffer, C., Hansen, J. N., Neugebauer, P., Trötschel, C., Jovine, L., Han, L., Florman, H. M., Kaupp, U. B., Strünker, T., & Wachten, D. (2020) "Molecular Mechanism Underlying the Action of Zona-pellucida Glycoproteins on Mouse Sperm." Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology, 8, 1–15. doi.org/10.3389/fcell.2020.572735
    Wang, T., Young, S., Krenz, H., Tüttelmann, F., Röpke, A., Krallmann, C., Kliesch, S., Zeng, X., Brenker, C., & Strünker, T. (2020) "The Ca2+ channel CatSper is not activated by cAMP/PKA signaling but directly affected by chemicals used to probe the action of cAMP and PKA." Journal of Biological Chemistry. doi.org/10.1074/jbc.RA120.013218
    Schiffer C, Rieger S, Brenker C, Young S, Hamzeh H, Wachten D, Tüttelmann F, Röpke A, Kaupp UB, Wang T, Wagner A, Krallmann C, Kliesch S, Fallnich C, Strünker T. (2020) "Rotational motion and rheotaxis of human sperm do not require functional CatSper channels and transmembrane Ca2+ signaling." EMBO J. (2020) Jan 39:e102363. doi.org/10.15252/embj.2019102363
    Hamzeh H, Alvarez L, Strünker T, Kierzek M, Brenker C, Deal PE, Miller EW, Seifert R, Kaupp UB (2019) "Kinetic and photonic techniques to study chemotactic signaling in sea urchin sperm." Methods Cell Biol. 151:487-517 doi.org/10.1016/bs.mcb.2018.12.001
    Amedonu E, Brenker C, Barman S, Schreiber JA, Becker S, Peischard S, Strutz-Seebohm N, Strippel C, Dik A, Hartung HP, Budde T, Wiendl H, Strünker T, Wünsch B, Goebels N, Meuth SG, Seebohm G, Melzer N (2019) "An Assay to Determine Mechanisms of Rapid Autoantibody-Induced Neurotransmitter Receptor Endocytosis and Vesicular Trafficking in Autoimmune Encephalitis." Front Neurol. 2019 Mar 1;10:178. doi.org/10.3389/fneur.2019.00178
    Lim S, Kierzek M, O'Connor AE, Brenker C, Merriner DJ, Okuda H, Volpert M, Gaikwad A, Bianco D, Potter D, Prabhakar R, Strünker T, O'Bryan MK (2019) "CRISP2 Is a Regulator of Multiple Aspects of Sperm Function and Male Fertility." Endocrinology. 2019 Apr 1;160(4):915-924 doi.org/10.1210/en.2018-01076
    Brenker C, Rehfeld A, Schiffer C, Kierzek M, Kaupp UB, Skakkebæk NE, Strünker T (2018) "Synergistic activation of CatSper Ca2+ channels in human sperm by oviductal ligands and endocrine disrupting chemicals." Hum Reprod. 2018 Sep 5. doi.org/10.1093/humrep/dey275.
    Rennhack A, Schiffer C, Brenker C, Fridman D, Nitao ET, Cheng YM, Tamburrino L, Balbach M, Stölting G, Berger TK, Kierzek M, Alvarez L, Wachten D, Zeng XH, Baldi E, Publicover S, Kaupp UB, Strünker T (2018). "A novel cross-species inhibitor to study the function of CatSper Ca2+ channels in sperm." Br J Pharmacol. 2018 May 3. doi.org/10.1111/bph.14355
    Brenker, C.* & Schiffer, C.*, Wagner I.V., Tüttelmann, F., Röpke, A., Rennhack, A., Kaupp, U.B., Strünker, T. (2018) "Action of steroids and plant triterpenoids on CatSper Ca2+ channels in human sperm." PNAS 115, E344-E346. doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1717929115 *Equal contribution.
    Berger TK, Fußhöller DM, Goodwin N, Bönigk W, Müller A, Dokani Khesroshahi N, Brenker C, Wachten D, Krause E, Kaupp UB & Strünker T. (2016) "Post-translational cleavage of Hv1 in human sperm tunes pH- and voltage-dependent gating" J Physiol. doi.org/10.1113/JP273189
    Jikeli JF, Alvarez L, Friedrich BM, Wilson LG, Pascal R, Colin R, Pichlo M, Rennhack A, Brenker C, Kaupp UB (2015) “Sperm navigation along helical paths in 3D chemoattractant landscapes” Nature Communications 6, 7985 doi.org/10.1038/ncomms8985
    Franklin BS, Bossaller L, De Nardo D, Ratter JM, Stutz A, Engels G, Brenker C, Nordhoff M, Mirandola SR, Al-Amoudi A, Mangan MS, Zimmer S, Monks BG, Fricke M, Schmidt RE, Espevik T, Jones B, Jarnicki AG, Hansbro PM, Busto P, Marshak-Rothstein A, Hornemann S, Aguzzi A, Kastenmüller W, Latz E (2014) „The adaptor ASC has extracellular and 'prionoid' activities that propagate inflammation” Nature Immunology 15, 727-737 doi.org/10.1038/ni.2913
    Schiffer, C., Müller, A., Egeberg, D.L., Alvarez, L., Brenker, C., Rehfeld, A., Frederiksen, H., Wäschle, B., Kaupp, U.B., Balbach, M., Wachten, D., Skakkebaek, N.E., Almstrup, K. & Strünker, T. (2014) "Direct action of endocrine disrupting chemicals on human sperm.” EMBO Reports 15, 758-765. doi.org/10.15252/embr.201438869
    Brenker C, Zhou Y, Müller A, Echeverry FA, Trötschel C, Poetsch A, Xia XM, Bönigk W, Lingle CJ, Kaupp UB & Strünker T (2014) „The Ca2+-activated K+ current of human sperm is mediated by Slo3“ eLife 2014;3:e01438 doi.org/10.7554/eLife.01438
    Brenker C*, Goodwin N*, Weyand I, Kashikar ND, Naruse M, Krähling M, Müller A, Kaupp UB & Strünker T (2012) “The CatSper channel: a polymodal chemosensor in human sperm“ EMBO Journal 31, 1654 – 1665 doi.org/10.1038/emboj.2012.30
    Strünker T*, Goodwin N*, Brenker C*, Kashikar ND, Weyand I, Seifert R & Kaupp UB (2011) "The CatSper channel mediates progesterone-induced Ca2+ influx in human sperm" Nature 471, 382-386 doi.org/10.1038/nature09769
    *contributed equally
  • Current Grants

    2020 - 2023 The (patho)physiology of ion channels in human sperm (BR 6398/1-2, CRU326, DFG)
    2021 – 2022 CASA 2.0 – A new approach towards early diagnosis of hitherto unexplained male infertility (Pilot Project, CRU326, DFG)
    2018 - 2019 How to activate the oocyte? Development of a PLCζ assay to predict failure of IVF and ICSI (Pilot Project 3, CRU326, DFG)
    2016 - 2019 The action of CRISP proteins in mouse and human sperm (BR 1 2 15 07, IMF, University of Münster)
    2016 - 2017 Molecular mechanisms of mechanosensation (PP-2016-12, Cells in Motion, University of Münster)