Establishment of a hypoxic chamber - lab visit at the RWTH Aachen

7 Nov, 2017

In October 2016, I spend two weeks in the working group of Prof. Andreas Ludwig at the Institute of Inflammatory Pharmacology (Entzündungspharmakologie) at the RWTH Aachen.

During some pre-experiments in Kiel, I could show that hypoxia might be an important environmental factor for the stimulation of proteases. Based on these findings, we decided to establish a hypoxic chamber in our laboratory to be able to simulate physiological hypoxic conditions. In the laboratory of Prof. Ludwig, the same hypoxic chamber was established, so it was a good opportunity for me to get insight in the system and the possible readout systems. Additionally, I had the chance to bring my own cell lines to make first experiments in the hypoxic chamber. During the lab visit, I was supervised by a post doc who was responsible for establishing the hypoxic chamber. First, I got technical instructions and learned how to build up the system in the laboratory. Second, I learned how to control the hypoxic conditions over time and could benefit from the experience of the lab members. Third, I learned about different readout systems to control the hypoxia such as western blot or RT-PCR with suitable proteins and genes. Last but not least, I performed first experiments with hepatocytes in the hypoxic chambers under different hypoxic conditions. Back in Kiel, I am establishing the hypoxic chamber in our laboratory and performing the first experiment to set up the system.

In addition to the scientific knowledge I have acquired, it has also been an enrichment for me personally, which has broadened my horizons and also provided me with new contacts for my future path in science.

Lena Baumecker    Lena Baumecker