EMBL Rome, Adriano Buzzati-Traverso Campus, Via Ramarini 32, 00015 Monterotondo (RM), Italy


  • PhD 1997, University of Edinburgh.
    Postdoctoral work at the Max Delbrück Centrum, Berlin.
    Junior Professor at the Charité, Berlin.
    Group leader at EMBL since 2008.
    Group leader in the Molecular Medicine Partnership Unit.


Total: 47 publication(s)


Taberner FJ, Prato V, Schaefer I, Schrenk-Siemens K, Heppenstall PA, Lechner SG. (2019)

Structure-guided examination of the mechanogating mechanism of PIEZO2.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1905985116
Europe PMC | doi


Sundukova M, Prifti E, Bucci A, Kirillova K, Serrao J, Reymond L, Umebayashi M, Hovius R, Riezman H, Johnsson K, Heppenstall PA. (2018)

A chemogenetic approach for optical monitoring of voltage in neurons.

Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. Engl. doi: 10.1002/anie.201812967
Europe PMC | doi

Dhandapani R, Arokiaraj CM, Taberner FJ, Pacifico P, Raja S, Nocchi L, Portulano C, Franciosa F, Maffei M, Hussain AF, de Castro Reis F, Reymond L, Perlas E, Garcovich S, Barth S, Lechner SG, Johnsson K, Heppenstall PA. (2018)

Control of mechanical pain hypersensitivity in mice through ligand-targeted photoablation of TrkB-positive sensory neurons.

Nat Commun 9(1) doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-04049-3
Europe PMC | doi


Prato V, Taberner FJ, Hockley JRF, Callejo G, Arcourt A, Tazir B, Hammer L, Schad P, Heppenstall PA, Smith ES, Lechner SG. (2017)

Functional and Molecular Characterization of Mechanoinsensitive "Silent" Nociceptors.

Cell Rep 21(11):3102-3115. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2017.11.066
Europe PMC | doi

Simeoli R, Montague K, Jones HR, Castaldi L, Chambers D, Kelleher JH, Vacca V, Pitcher T, Grist J, Al-Ahdal H, Wong LF, Perretti M, Lai J, Mouritzen P, Heppenstall P, Malcangio M. (2017)

Exosomal cargo including microRNA regulates sensory neuron to macrophage communication after nerve trauma.

Nat Commun 8(1):1778. doi: 10.1038/s41467-017-01841-5
Europe PMC | doi

Murana E, Pagani F, Basilico B, Sundukova M, Batti L, Di Angelantonio S, Cortese B, Grimaldi A, Francioso A, Heppenstall P, Bregestovski P, Limatola C, Ragozzino D. (2017)

ATP release during cell swelling activates a Ca(2+)-dependent Cl(-) current by autocrine mechanism in mouse hippocampal microglia.

Sci Rep 7(1) doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-04452-8
Europe PMC | doi

Arcourt A, Gorham L, Dhandapani R, Prato V, Taberner FJ, Wende H, Gangadharan V, Birchmeier C, Heppenstall PA, Lechner SG. (2017)

Touch Receptor-Derived Sensory Information Alleviates Acute Pain Signaling and Fine-Tunes Nociceptive Reflex Coordination.

Neuron 93(1):179-193. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2016.11.027
Europe PMC | doi


Morley SJ, Qi YM, Iovino L, Andolfi L, Guo D, Kalebic N, Castaldi L, Tischer C, Portulano C, Bolasco G, Shirlekar K, Fusco CM, Asaro A, Fermani F, Sundukova M, Matti U, Reymond L, De Ninno A, Businaro L, Johnsson K, Lazzarino M, Ries J, Schwab Y, Hu J, Heppenstall PA. (2016)

Acetylated tubulin is essential for touch sensation in mice

ELIFE 5 doi: 10.7554/eLife.20813
Europe PMC | doi

Song K, Wang H, Kamm GB, Pohle J, Reis FD, Heppenstall P, Wende H, Siemens J. (2016)

The TRPM2 channel is a hypothalamic heat sensor that limits fever and can drive hypothermia

Science 353(6306):1393-1398. doi: 10.1126/science.aaf7537
Europe PMC | doi

Batti L, Sundukova M, Murana E, Pimpinella S, De Castro Reis F, Pagani F, Wang H, Pellegrino E, Perlas E, Di Angelantonio S, Ragozzino D, Heppenstall PA. (2016)

TMEM16F Regulates Spinal Microglial Function in Neuropathic Pain States.

Cell Rep 15(12):2608-2615. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2016.05.039
Europe PMC | doi

Stantcheva KK, Iovino L, Dhandapani R, Martinez C, Castaldi L, Nocchi L, Perlas E, Portulano C, Pesaresi M, Shirlekar KS, de Castro Reis F, Paparountas T, Bilbao D, Heppenstall PA. (2016)

A subpopulation of itch-sensing neurons marked by Ret and somatostatin expression.

EMBO Rep. 17(4):471-616. doi: 10.15252/embr.201540983
Europe PMC | doi


Selvaraj D, Gangadharan V, Michalski CW, Kurejova M, Stösser S, Srivastava K, Schweizerhof M, Waltenberger J, Ferrara N, Heppenstall P, Shibuya M, Augustin HG, Kuner R. (2015)

A Functional Role for VEGFR1 Expressed in Peripheral Sensory Neurons in Cancer Pain.

Cancer Cell 27(6):780-796. doi: 10.1016/j.ccell.2015.04.017
Europe PMC | doi

Reinhold AK, Batti L, Bilbao D, Buness A, Rittner HL, Heppenstall PA. (2015)

Differential transcriptional profiling of damaged and intact adjacent dorsal root Ganglia neurons in neuropathic pain.

PLoS ONE 10(4) doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0123342
Europe PMC | doi

Yang G, de Castro Reis F, Sundukova M, Pimpinella S, Asaro A, Castaldi L, Batti L, Bilbao D, Reymond L, Johnsson K, Heppenstall PA. (2015)

Genetic targeting of chemical indicators in vivo.

Nat. Methods 12(2) doi: 10.1038/nmeth.3207
Europe PMC | doi


Chen JT, Guo D, Campanelli D, Frattini F, Mayer F, Zhou L, Kuner R, Heppenstall PA, Knipper M, Hu J. (2014)

Presynaptic GABAergic inhibition regulated by BDNF contributes to neuropathic pain induction.

Nat Commun 5 doi: 10.1038/ncomms6331
Europe PMC | doi

Simonetti M, Agarwal N, Stösser S, Bali KK, Karaulanov E, Kamble R, Pospisilova B, Kurejova M, Birchmeier W, Niehrs C, Heppenstall P, Kuner R. (2014)

Wnt-Fzd Signaling Sensitizes Peripheral Sensory Neurons via Distinct Noncanonical Pathways

Neuron 83(1):104-121. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2014.05.037
Europe PMC | doi


Nockemann D, Rouault M, Labuz D, Hublitz P, McKnelly K, Reis FC, Stein C, Heppenstall PA. (2013)

The K(+) channel GIRK2 is both necessary and sufficient for peripheral opioid-mediated analgesia

EMBO Mol Med 5(8):1263-1277. doi: 10.1002/emmm.201201980
Europe PMC | doi

Wildner H, Das Gupta R, Bröhl D, Heppenstall PA, Zeilhofer HU, Birchmeier C. (2013)

Genome-wide expression analysis of Ptf1a- and Ascl1-deficient mice reveals new markers for distinct dorsal horn interneuron populations contributing to nociceptive reflex plasticity

J. Neurosci. 33(17):7299-7307. doi: 10.1523/jneurosci.0491-13.2013
Europe PMC | doi

Kalebic N, Martinez C, Perlas E, Hublitz P, Bilbao-Cortes D, Fiedorczuk K, Andolfo A, Heppenstall PA. (2013)

Tubulin acetyltransferase αTAT1 destabilizes microtubules independently of its acetylation activity

Mol. Cell. Biol. 33(6):1114-1123. doi: 10.1128/mcb.01044-12
Europe PMC | doi

Lukinavičius G, Umezawa K, Olivier N, Honigmann A, Yang G, Plass T, Mueller V, Reymond L, Corrêa IR Jr, Luo ZG, Schultz C, Lemke EA, Heppenstall P, Eggeling C, Manley S, Johnsson K. (2013)

A near-infrared fluorophore for live-cell super-resolution microscopy of cellular proteins

Nat Chem 5(2):132-139. doi: 10.1038/nchem.1546
Europe PMC | doi

Batti L, Mukhtarov M, Audero E, Ivanov A, Paolicelli O, Zurborg S, Gross C, Bregestovski P, Heppenstall PA. (2013)

Transgenic mouse lines for non-invasive ratiometric monitoring of intracellular chloride

Front Mol Neurosci 6:11. doi: 10.3389/fnmol.2013.00011
Europe PMC | doi

Kalebic N, Sorrentino S, Perlas E, Bolasco G, Martinez C, Heppenstall PA. (2013)

αTAT1 is the major α-tubulin acetyltransferase in mice

Nat Commun 4:1962. doi: 10.1038/ncomms2962
Europe PMC | doi

Kress M, Hüttenhofer A, Landry M, Kuner R, Favereaux A, Greenberg D, Bednarik J, Heppenstall P, Kronenberg F, Malcangio M, Rittner H, Uçeyler N, Trajanoski Z, Mouritzen P, Birklein F, Sommer C, Soreq H. (2013)

microRNAs in nociceptive circuits as predictors of future clinical applications

Front Mol Neurosci 6 doi: 10.3389/fnmol.2013.00033
Europe PMC | doi

Wang H, Schupp M, Zurborg S, Heppenstall PA. (2013)

Residues in the pore region of Drosophila transient receptor potential A1 dictate sensitivity to thermal stimuli

J. Physiol. (Lond.) 591(Pt 1):185-201. doi: 10.1113/jphysiol.2012.242842
Europe PMC | doi


Lapatsina L, Jira JA, Smith ES, Poole K, Kozlenkov A, Bilbao D, Lewin GR, Heppenstall PA. (2012)

Regulation of ASIC channels by a stomatin/STOML3 complex located in a mobile vesicle pool in sensory neurons

Open Biol 2(6):120096. doi: 10.1098/rsob.120096
Europe PMC | doi

Topalidou I, Keller C, Kalebic N, Nguyen KC, Somhegyi H, Politi KA, Heppenstall P, Hall DH, Chalfie M. (2012)

Genetically separable functions of the MEC-17 tubulin acetyltransferase affect microtubule organization

Curr. Biol. 22(12):1057-1065. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2012.03.066
Europe PMC | doi

Schmidt Y, Labuz D, Heppenstall PA, Machelska H. (2012)

Cutaneous nociceptors lack sensitisation, but reveal μ-opioid receptor-mediated reduction in excitability to mechanical stimulation in neuropathy

Mol Pain 8:81. doi: 10.1186/1744-8069-8-81
Europe PMC | doi


Zurborg S, Piszczek A, Martínez C, Hublitz P, Al Banchaabouchi M, Moreira P, Perlas E, Heppenstall PA. (2011)

Generation and characterization of an Advillin-Cre driver mouse line

Mol Pain 7:66. doi: 10.1186/1744-8069-7-66
Europe PMC | doi


Goswami C, Kuhn J, Heppenstall PA, Hucho T. (2010)

Importance of non-selective cation channel TRPV4 interaction with cytoskeleton and their reciprocal regulations in cultured cells

PLoS ONE 5(7):e11654. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0011654
Europe PMC | doi


Caspani O, Heppenstall PA. (2009)

TRPA1 and cold transduction: an unresolved issue?

J. Gen. Physiol. 133(3):245-249. doi: 10.1085/jgp.200810136
Europe PMC | doi

Caspani O, Zurborg S, Labuz D, Heppenstall PA. (2009)

The contribution of TRPM8 and TRPA1 channels to cold allodynia and neuropathic pain

PLoS ONE 4(10):e7383. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0007383
Europe PMC | doi


Park TJ, Lu Y, Jüttner R, Smith ES, Hu J, Brand A, Wetzel C, Milenkovic N, Erdmann B, Heppenstall PA, Laurito CE, Wilson SP, Lewin GR. (2008)

Selective inflammatory pain insensitivity in the African naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus glaber)

PLoS Biol. 6(1):e13. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.0060013
Europe PMC | doi


Zurborg S, Yurgionas B, Jira JA, Caspani O, Heppenstall PA. (2007)

Direct activation of the ion channel TRPA1 by Ca2+

Nat. Neurosci. 10(3):277-279. doi: 10.1038/nn1843
Europe PMC | doi

Endres-Becker J, Heppenstall PA, Mousa SA, Labuz D, Oksche A, Schäfer M, Stein C, Zöllner C. (2007)

Mu-opioid receptor activation modulates transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) currents in sensory neurons in a model of inflammatory pain

Mol. Pharmacol. 71(1):12-18. doi: 10.1124/mol.106.026740
Europe PMC | doi

Wetzel C, Hu J, Riethmacher D, Benckendorff A, Harder L, Eilers A, Moshourab R, Kozlenkov A, Labuz D, Caspani O, Erdmann B, Machelska H, Heppenstall PA, Lewin GR. (2007)

A stomatin-domain protein essential for touch sensation in the mouse

Nature 445(7124):206-209. doi: 10.1038/nature05394
Europe PMC | doi


Heppenstall PA, Lewin GR. (2006)

A role for T-type Ca2+ channels in mechanosensation

Cell Calcium 40(2):165-174. doi: 10.1016/j.ceca.2006.04.021
Europe PMC | doi


Hartmann B, Ahmadi S, Heppenstall PA, Lewin GR, Schott C, Borchardt T, Seeburg PH, Zeilhofer HU, Sprengel R, Kuner R. (2004)

The AMPA receptor subunits GluR-A and GluR-B reciprocally modulate spinal synaptic plasticity and inflammatory pain

Neuron 44(4):637-650. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2004.10.029
Europe PMC | doi


Machelska H, Heppenstall PA, Stein C. (2003)

Breaking the pain barrier

Nat. Med. 9(11):1353-1354. doi: 10.1038/nm1103-1353
Europe PMC | doi

Shin JB, Martinez-Salgado C, Heppenstall PA, Lewin GR. (2003)

A T-type calcium channel required for normal function of a mammalian mechanoreceptor

Nat. Neurosci. 6(7):724-730. doi: 10.1038/nn1076
Europe PMC | doi


Schmidt H, Werner M, Heppenstall PA, Henning M, Moré MI, Kühbandner S, Lewin GR, Hofmann F, Feil R, Rathjen FG. (2002)

cGMP-mediated signaling via cGKIalpha is required for the guidance and connectivity of sensory axons

J. Cell Biol. 159(3):489-498. doi: 10.1083/jcb.200207058
Europe PMC | doi

Müller T, Brohmann H, Pierani A, Heppenstall PA, Lewin GR, Jessell TM, Birchmeier C. (2002)

The homeodomain factor lbx1 distinguishes two major programs of neuronal differentiation in the dorsal spinal cord

Neuron 34(4):551-562. doi: 10.1016/s0896-6273(02)00689-x
Europe PMC | doi


Heppenstall PA, Lewin GR. (2001)

BDNF but not NT-4 is required for normal flexion reflex plasticity and function

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 98(14):8107-8112. doi: 10.1073/pnas.141015098
Europe PMC | doi


Heppenstall PA, Lewin GR. (2000)

Neurotrophins, nociceptors and pain

Curr Opin Anaesthesiol 13(5):573-576. doi: 10.1097/00001503-200010000-00015
Europe PMC | doi

Price MP, Lewin GR, McIlwrath SL, Cheng C, Xie J, Heppenstall PA, Stucky CL, Mannsfeldt AG, Brennan TJ, Drummond HA, Qiao J, Benson CJ, Tarr DE, Hrstka RF, Yang B, Williamson RA, Welsh MJ. (2000)

The mammalian sodium channel BNC1 is required for normal touch sensation

Nature 407(6807):1007-1011. doi: 10.1038/35039512
Europe PMC | doi

Pesquero JB, Araujo RC, Heppenstall PA, Stucky CL, Silva JA Jr, Walther T, Oliveira SM, Pesquero JL, Paiva AC, Calixto JB, Lewin GR, Bader M. (2000)

Hypoalgesia and altered inflammatory responses in mice lacking kinin B1 receptors

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 97(14):8140-8145. doi: 10.1073/pnas.120035997
Europe PMC | doi


Heppenstall PA, Fleetwood-Walker SM. (1997)

Glycine receptor regulation of neurokinin1 receptor function in rat dorsal horn neurones

Neuroreport 8(14):3109-3112. doi: 10.1097/00001756-199709290-00020
Europe PMC | doi

Heppenstall PA, Fleetwood-Walker SM. (1997)

The glycine site of the NMDA receptor contributes to neurokinin1 receptor agonist facilitation of NMDA receptor agonist-evoked activity in rat dorsal horn neurons

Brain Res. 744(2):235-245. doi: 10.1016/s0006-8993(96)01065-7
Europe PMC | doi