Short CV/Education and training

Academic education

  • 1979 – 1980
    Degree in Biology/Chemistry for High School teaching

  • 1980 – 1986
    Degree in Biology, University of Bielefeld, NRW

  • 1986 – 1987
    Diploma thesis in the Dept. of Developmental Biology, University of Bielefeld, NRW

  • 1987 – 1992
    Doctoral thesis (Dr. rer. nat.) at the Institute of Physiological Chemistry and Pathobiochemistry, Westfälische Wilhelms-University Münster, NRW


  • 1992 – 1994
    Postdoctoral fellowship at the Dept. of Pathology, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, USA

  • 1994 – 1997
    Instructor at the Dept. of Dermatology, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, USA

  • 1997 – 2002
    Assistant professor at the Institute of Physiological Chemistry and Pathobiochemistry, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, NRW

  • 2003
    Habilitation in Physiological Chemistry and Pathobiochemistry at the University Hospital Münster (WWU Münster)

  • 2003
    Associate professor in the Dept. of Experimental Orthopedics, Dept. of Orthopedics, University of Regensburg

  • 2009
    Awarding of APL-Professorship for Experimental Orthopedics

Selected publications

  • Dreier R.; Wallace S.; Fuchs S.; Bruckner P.; Grässel S.: Paracrine interactions of chondrocytes and macrophages in cartilage degradation: Articular chondrocytes provide factors which activate macrophage derived pro-gelatinase B (pro-MMP-9). J Cell Sci 114: 3813-3822, 2001

  • Kassner A., Tiedemann K., Notbohm H., Ludwig T., Mörgelin M., Reinhardt DP., Chu ML., Bruckner P., Grässel S.: Molecular structure and interaction of recombinant human type XVI collagen. J Mol Biol 339(4): 835-853, 2004

  • Budde B., Blumbach K., Ylästalo J, Zaucke F., Wagener R., Ehlen HWA, Ala-Kokko L., Paulsson M., Bruckner P., Grässel S.: Altered integration of matrilin –3 into cartilage extracellular matrix in the absence of collagen IX. Mol Cell Biol 25 (23): 10465-10478, 2005

  • Eble J.A., Kassner A., Niland S., Mörgelin M., Grifka J., Grässel S.: Collagen XVI harbours an integrin alpha 1 beta 1 recognition site in its C-terminal domains. J Biol Chem Sep 1; 281(35): 25745-56, 2006

  • Dreier R., Opolka A., Grifka J., Bruckner P., Grässel S.: Collagen IX-deficiency seriously compromises growth cartilage development in mice. Matrix Biol May; 27(4):319-29, 2008

  • Grässel S., Opolka A., Anders S., Straub R.H., Grifka J., Luger T.A., Böhm M.: The melanocortin system in articular chondrocytes: Detection of melanocortin receptors, proopiomelanocortin and precursor proteases – Evidence for a regulatory effect on pro-inflammatory cytokines and extracellular matrix components. Arthritis Rheumatol. 60(10):3017-27, 2009

  • Grässel S., Rickert M., Opolka A., Bosserhoff A.K., Angele P., Grifka J., Anders S.: Coculture between periosteal explants and articular chondrocytes induce expression of TGF-ß1 and collagen I. Rheumatology (Oxford) 49 (2): 218-230, 2010

  • Opolka A., Straub R.H., Pasoldt A., Grifka J., Grässel S.: Substance P and norepinephrine modulate chondrocyte proliferation and apoptosis. Arthritis Rheumatol. 64 (3):729-739, 2012

  • Stöckl S., Bauer R., Bosserhoff A., Göttl C., Grifka J., Grässel S.: Sox9 modulates cell survival and adipogenic differentiation of multipotent adult rat mesenchymal stem cells. J Cell Sci, Jul 1;126(Pt 13):2890-902, 2013

  • Leyh M., Seitz A., Dürselen L., Springorum H.R., Angele P., Ignatius A., Grifka J., Grässel S.: Osteoarthritic cartilage explants affect extracellular matrix production and composition in cocultured bone-marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells and articular chondrocytes. Stem Cell Res Ther Jun 10;5(3):77, 2014.

Complete list of publications

Selected projects

DFG funded

  • "Sox9 and adult bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSC)" (GR 1301/7-2)

  • "Microenvironmental influence of cartilage and bone explants on chondrogenic differentiation of multipotent mesenchymal stem cells" (AZ GR 1301/8-1)

  • "Chondroprotective role of the melanocortin system in osteoarthritis", DFG-FOR 696 "Molecular Analyses and Interactions at Articular Interfaces" (GR 1301/9-1)

  • "Interaction between cartilage/subchondral interfaces and MSC in vitro and in vivo" (GR 1301/13-1)

  • "The peripheral nervous system and focal bony erosions in arthritis" (GR 1301/10-1), SPP Osteoimmunology-ImmunoBone

  • "Role of peripheral nervous system in osteoarthritis pathology" (GR 1301/18-1)

  • "Role of sensory nervous system in subchondral bone remodelling during osteoarthritis pathogenesis" (GR 1301/19-1) SP of FOR 2407/1

BMBF funded

  • "Role of sensory neuropeptides and catecholamines in fracture healing and fracture-stimulated autoimmune response", ImmunoPain (Az: 01EC10004D)

  • "Influence of the peripheral nervous system on osteoporotic fracture healing", Neuroimpa (Az: 01EC1403B)

Membership in scientific bodies/juries


  • German Society for Matrix Biology (GSMB), Board: 2nd president

  • International Society for Matrix Biology (ISMB)

  • "German Society for Orthopedics and Orthopedic Surgery" (DGOOC)

  • Section Basic Research (SGF) of the German Society for Othopedic and Trauma Surgery (DGOU), Board: 2nd president

Editorial Board

  • Matrix Biology

  • Scientific Reports


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