Arbeitsgruppe apl. Prof. Dr. Imke Metz

Fig. 1. Early MS lesions reveal three patterns of demyelination, suggesting different pathomechanisms leading to lesion formation.

AG Metz studies the histopathology of multiple sclerosis (MS) and related inflammatory demyelinating diseases such as neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders (NMOSD). We focus on the pathological heterogeneity of MS lesions, and their correlation with MRI, clinical characteristics and therapeutic responses. We perform biomarker studies (neurofilament light chains (NfL), peptide microarrays) to correlate serological findings with histology. We run a clinical study that includes biopsied patients diagnosed with MS due to histopathological findings, providing an excellent opportunity to study early MS stages.

Fig. 2. A PML lesion shows numerous glial cells infected with JC-Polyomavirus (in red, TAg) and replicating the virus (in green, VP1).

We also focus on the effects of MS medications on CNS histopathology, as well as on side effects of MS therapeutics. Studied medications include natalizumab, fumarates, stem cell transplantation, high dose steroids for relapses and daclizumab, which was taken of the market due to severe side effects.

Natalizumab treatment is associated with an increased risk of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML), an opportunistic and demyelinating brain infection that is caused by the JC-Polyomavirus. We focus on PML pathogenesis and histopathology, making use of a large PML biobank as well as by establishing a glial chimeric PML mouse model.

Current lab members

Dr. med. Lidia Stork

Lidia Stork received a medical degree in V.-F.-Voino-Jaseneski Krasnoyarsk State Medical University (Russia) and started a research career as a Fulbright fellow in the department of neurosciences in Cleveland Clinic Foundation (USA). In 2013, she joined the Institute of Neuropathology, University Medical Center Göttingen, and received a doctoral degree under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Imke Metz. Since 2017, she also works as a resident doctor of neuropathology and involved in all routine neuropathological diagnostics in biopsy and autopsy of human tissue. From the beginning, her major scientific interests focused on the histopathology of multiple sclerosis and progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML). She studies histopathological features, serum biomarkers and clinical characteristics including therapy responses in different subgroups of multiple sclerosis patients and related diseases. Immunological aspects, including exhaustion of the T-cells during PML, are now in special interest.

Adriane Kutllovci

Adriane Kutllovci graduated from the Justus-Liebig University Gießen in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Biology. Afterwards, she continued with her MSc studies in biology at University of Hohenheim in Stuttgart and received her Master’s degree in 2019. She joined the Metz lab as a PhD candidate in the same year. Adriane is interested in the research of JCPy virus infection and spread in human CNS tissue and the establishment of in vitro and in vivo models to study PML disease.

Sven Müller

Sven Müller (B.A. in health care economics, VWA) has been a member of the group since 2006 and is responsible for the administration of the study database, tissue sample acquisition and storage as well as document management. He is also tasked with making first contact with study patients.

Julia Philippent

Julia Philippent is a lab technician who started working for the Metz lab in September 2022. She is tasked with histological and molecular biological work as well as cell culture.

Associated scientists

Dr. Niels Kruse

Medical students

Anne-Sophie Dietmann
Schirin Stephan
Mareike Gloth
Helen Synn
Benita-Sophie Raabe
Marco Mlynek
Antonia Heußner


Institut für Neuropathologie

Apl. Prof. Dr. med. Imke Metz

Apl. Prof. Dr. med. Imke Metz


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