Born in the rainy far north of Germany in the late 70s, I followed the migratory birds heading south when I was old enough to go to University. I studied the basics of genes and inheritance in Göttingen, and specialised in medical genetics in Freiburg, the most sunny German city. To learn more about muscle disorders (and to have access to great French wine and cheese), I crossed the border in 2007 to join a very successful research team at the IGBMC in Strasbourg. Our team focuses on centronuclear and myotubular myopathy, but also works on other muscle disorders. We aim to identify the genetic causes of muscle weakness, we want to understand what exactly happens in the muscle fibers, and we assess experimental approaches to pave the way for the development of therapies.
Since 2014 I am an associate professor and a project leader, and in 2017 I was honored young (!) Myologist of the Year by the World Muscle Society. As a geneticist, I am in contact with many affected families around the world. The MTM/CNM family conference is an important get-together, and gives me the opportunity to discuss and explain the different genes and mutations causing the myopathies. Within the last 10 years, we could solve many cases, and as I always say to the families: knowing the genetic cause is the first step towards a therapy.