Institute of Neuroscience

Staff Profile

Dr Gerrit Hilgen

Research Associate


Scientific Interest

My general scientific interest is on sensory signal processing and neuronal networks. During my PhD, I worked on the retina and shed light on specialised cell-cell connections which form dynamic networks between neurons and allow rapid propagation and integration of signals. After my PhD, I expanded my knowledge to the tactile sensory system. I assembled a voltage sensitive dye imaging system and developed my own computational imaging processing approaches to study how the networks in the leech accomplish the integration of tactile sensory input. In 2013, my interest switched back to the retina and I started working with large-scale high density multi-electrode array recordings in combination with structural imaging. This novel strategy is well suited for my own scientific interests because it allows to reveal how all the different cells in the retina work simultaneously together and shape the neural image that is sent to the brain.



Academic Employments

April 2017-                        Postdoctoral Research Associate in the lab of Dr. E. Sernagor, Newcastle University, UK

Sept. 2013- Mar. 2017     Postdoctoral Research Associate in the lab of Dr. E. Sernagor, Newcastle University, UK

Mar. 2012- Aug. 2013      Postdoctoral Researcher in the lab of Prof. J. Kretzberg, University of Oldenburg, Germany



2007-2012                        PhD in Neurobiology, University of Oldenburg, Germany.

Thesis title: Expression and functional role of the solute carrier NCBE and the gap  junction proteins connexin45 and connexin57 in the mouse retina. Supervisor: apl. Prof. Dr. Karin Dedek

2001-2007                        Diploma in Cell Biology, Biochemistry and Physiology, University of Oldenburg, Germany.

Thesis title: Cx57 modulation and localization in the mouse retina. Supervisors: apl. Prof. Ulrike Janssen-Bienhold and Prof. Reto Weiler


Society for Neuroscience

Physiological Society



I supervise(d) undergraduate, masters and PhD students in Newcastle and Oldenburg.