Short CV/Education and training

  • 1967 – 1975
    General-education polytechnic secondary school in Arnstadt, Germany

  • 1975 – 1978
    Extended grammar school (EOS) in Arnstadt

  • 1978 – 1979
    Preparation for study abroad and Abitur (A-levels) at the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg

  • 1979 – 1984
    Studied abroad at the Medical Academy in Sofia, Bulgaria

  • 1984
    State examination; results: very good

  • 1984
    German licence to practise medicine

  • 1984
    Began practising medicine at the Institute for Forensic Medicine at the Medical Academy of Erfurt, Germany; additional training to become a specialist in legal medicine

  • 1989
    Specialist colloquium in Berlin, Germany

  • 1989
    Doctor of Medicine (Dr. med.) in the field of forensic medicine at the Medical Academy of Erfurt, magna cum laude

  • 1993 – 1994
    Scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service (517 023 502 3) to study for five months at the Institute for Legal Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden; Research topic: Determining age on the basis of degree of racemisation of aspartic acid in bradytrophic tissues using the HPLC (High Pressure Liquid Chromatography) technique

  • 1994 – 1996
    Specialty doctor in forensic medicine at the Institute for Legal Medicine, Friedrich Schiller University, Jena, Germany

  • Since 1996
    Specialty doctor in forensic medicine at the Institute for Legal Medicine, University of Münster, Germany

  • 1997
    Fellowship from the German Research Foundation (PF 356/1-1) to conduct research for three months at the DNA Identification Laboratory, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Washington, DC; Research topic: Use of mitochondrial DNA in forensic medicine

  • 1999
    Habilitation (postdoctoral qualification) in legal medicine; thesis topic: On the sequential analysis of mitochondrial DNA in forensic medicine

  • 2000
    Award from the German Society of Legal Medicine for outstanding scientific work on mitochondrial DNA

  • 2001
    Short-listed (no. 3) for a C3 professorship in legal medicine at LMU Munich, Germany

  • 2001
    C2 Senior assistant at the Institute of Legal Medicine, University of Münster

  • 2001
    Managed the organisation of the 19th International Congress of the International Society for Forensic Genetics (ISFG) in Münster, Germany, with approx. 500 participants from 41 countries

  • 2001
    Honorary membership in the working group Forensic Odontology, German Society for Dentistry, Oral Health and Orthodontics

  • 2002
    Short-listed (no. 3) for a university professor position in legal medicine in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Essen, Germany

  • 2003
    Managed the organisation of the 82nd Annual Meeting of the German Society of Legal Medicine, 17-20 September 2003 in Münster, Germany

  • 2003 – 2008
    Board member of the German Society of Legal Medicine

  • 2004
    Short-listed (no. 2) for a C3 professorship in legal medicine at the University of Cologne, Germany

  • 2005
    Appointed professor by special appointment in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Münster, Germany

  • 2006
    Accepted a permanent full-time position as a research associate in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Münster

  • 2006
    Managing consulting physician and acting director of the Institute of Legal Medicine, Münster

  • 2006
    Appointed member of the editorial advisory board of the International Journal of Legal Medicine, Springer, Heidelberg, Germany

  • 2006
    Short-listed (no. 2) for a W3 professorship in legal medicine in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Münster (to succeed University Prof. Brinkmann)

  • 2006
    Short-listed (no. 1) for a professorship in forensic medicine at the Medical University of Vienna, Austria

  • 2006
    Named editor of the journal Rechtsmedizin (Legal Medicine), Springer, Heidelberg, Germany

  • 2007
    Offer of a W3 university professorship and chair of legal and social medicine at the University of Würzburg, Germany, made by the Bavarian State Minister for Bavarian State Ministry of Sciences, Research and the Arts, Dr Tomas Goppel, MdL (member of the Landtag)

  • 2007
    Appointed acting head of the Institute of Legal Medicine, University Hospital of Münster

  • 2008
    Appointed director of the Institute of Legal Medicine, University Hospital of Münster

  • 2009
    Appointed Co-editor in chief of the International Journal of Legal Medicine, Springer, Heidelberg

  • 2009
    Appointed vice dean for structure and development, Faculty of Medicine, University of Münster

  • 2009
    Accredited by the Deutsche Akkreditierungsstelle (DAkkS, national accreditation body for Germany) as an expert in the area of forensic medicine, toxicology and biology specialising in forensic medicine and clinical forensics

  • 2010
    Elected deputy chairperson of the ethics commission of the Medical Association of Westphalia-Lippe, Germany, and the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Münster

  • 2010
    Accreditation as an expert witness in familial testing

  • 2010
    Elected member of the National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina

  • 2011
    Named editor of the journal Archiv für Kriminologie (Archive for Criminology), Schmidt-Römhild, Lübeck, Germany

Selected publications

  • Paneto, G.G. et al.: A single multiplex PCR and SNaPshot minisequencing reaction of 42 SNPs to classify admixture populations into mitochondrial DNA haplogroups. In: Mitochondrion 11, 2011. S. 296-302.

  • Köhnemann, S. et al.: qPCR and mtDNA SNP analysis of experimentally degraded hair samples and its application in forensic casework. In: Int J Legal Med 124, 2010. S. 337-342.

  • Köhnemann, S., Hohoff, C., Pfeiffer, H.: An economical mtDNA SNP assay detecting different mitochondrial haplogroups in identical HVR1 samples of Caucasian ancestry. In: Mitochondrion 9, 2009. S. 370-375.

  • Fracasso, T. et al.: Ultrasound-accelerated formalin fixation improves the preservation of nucleic acids extraction in histological sections. In: Int J Legal Med 123, 2009. S. 521-525.

  • Köhnemann, S. et al.: A rapid mtDNA assay of 22 SNPs in one multiplex reaction increases the power of forensic testing in European Caucasians. In: Int J Legal Med 122, 2008. S. 517-523.

  • Pfeiffer, H. et al.: Mitochondrial DNA control region diversity in hairs and body fluids of monozygotic triplets. In: Int J Legal Med 118, 2004. S. 71-74.

  • Pfeiffer, H. et al.: The results of an mtDNA study of 1200 inhabitants of a German village in comparison to other Caucasian databases and its relevance for forensic casework. In: Int J Legal Med 114, 2001. S. 169-172.


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