Short CV/Education and training

  • 1999
    Diploma, Studies of Biology, University of Göttingen, Germany, and University of California, San Diego, U.S.A.

  • 2002
    Ph.D., work at the EMBL and MPI of Neurobiology in the lab of Prof. R. Klein, University of Heidelberg

  • 2003 – 2008
    Postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Prof. Larry Zipursky at University of California, Los Angeles, U.S.A. and at the MPI of Neurobiology

  • 2008 – 2016
    Emmy-Noether- and later Max Planck Research Group leader at the MPI of Neurobiology

Selected publications

  • Hussain A*, Zhang M*, Üçpunar HK, Svensson T, Quillery E, Gompel N, Ignell R, Grunwald Kadow IC (2016). Ionotropic chemosensory receptors mediate the taste and smell of polyamines. PLoS Biology 14:e1002454. doi:10.1371

    * equal contribution

  • Hussain A*, Üçpunar HK*, Zhang M, Loschek LF, Grunwald Kadow IC (2016). Neuropeptides modulate female chemosensory processing upon mating in Drosophila.

    PLoS Biology 14:e1002455. doi: 10.1371

    * equal contribution

  • Lewis L, Siju KP, Aso Y, Friedrich AB, Bulteel AJB, Rubin GM, Grunwald Kadow IC (2015). A higher brain circuit for immediate integration of conflicting sensory information in Drosophila. Current Biology PMID: 26299514, doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2015.07.015

  • Bräcker LB*, Siju KP*, Varela N, Zhang M, Aso Y, Vasconcelos ML, Grunwald Kadow IC (2013). Essential role of the mushroom body in context-dependent CO₂avoidance in Drososphila. Current Biololgy 23(13):1228-34. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2013.05.029. Epub 2013 Jun 13

    * equal contribution

  • Cayirlioglu P*, Grunwald Kadow I*, Zhan X, Okamura K, Gunning D, Lai EC, Zipursky SL (2008). Hybrid Neurons in a microRNA mutant are putative evolutionary intermediates in insect CO2 sensory systems. Science 319: 1256-1260

    * These authors contributed equally

  • Jones WD, Cayirlioglu P, Grunwald Kadow I, Vosshall LB (2007). Two chemosensory receptors together mediate carbon dioxide detection in Drosophila. Nature 445: 86-90


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  1. Smelling and tasting what's good

    Dr. Ilona Grunwald Kadow's team at the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology has identified the receptors enabling insects to recognize polyamines in food. The study suggests that the ability to identify polyamines could have influenced animal survival and reproduction.