Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineNational Heart & Lung Institute

Visiting Professor



p.kohl Website




Heart Science CentreHarefield Hospital





Until 2017, Peter Kohl held the Chair in Cardiac Biophysics and Systems Biology at NHLI. Having relocated to Germany, to set up the new institute for Experimental Cardiovascular Medicine at the University of Freiburg, he is now a Visiting Professor at NHLI.

Peter studied Medicine and Biophysics at the Moscow Pirogov Institute (1981-1987) and, after post-graduate training and research at the Berlin Charité (PhD 1990, Facharzt 1991), he joined the Cardiac Electrophysiology Chair of Professor Denis Noble at Oxford (1992). In 1998, Peter set up the Oxford Cardiac Mechano-Electric Feedback lab, initially as a Royal Society Research Fellow, and subsequently as a Senior Fellow of the British Heart Foundation. While at Oxford, he held a Research Fellowship at Keble College (2002-2004) and was the Tutorial Fellow in Biomedical Sciences at Balliol (2004-2010).

Peter’s team enjoys a strong international reputation in cardiac mechano-electrical interaction studies, in particular as a result of their ability to cross traditional boundaries between fields (engineering, biophysics, biology, computing) and levels (ion channel to whole organ) of investigation. Building on a solid track-record in the development and application of novel techniques, they combine experiment and computation to integrate cardiac structure-function data to address clinically-relevant research targets. The group maintains close links with leading experimental and modelling teams in the UK and elsewhere, including Auckland, Baltimore, Boulder, Ekaterinburg, Heidelberg and Okayama.

Peter directs a significant portfolio of externally-funded research (supported in recent years by ERC, BBSRC, EPSRC, BHF, and EC), and has been a driver of international collaboration actions, such as the Network of Excellence for the EU Virtual Physiological Human Initiative whose co-founding director he was. He serves on editorial boards and as a reviewer for international journals and funding bodies. Peter is the coordinating editor of the primary textbook on Cardiac Mechano-Electric Coupling and Arrhythmias, and chairman of the leading international workshop series on the same topic.

For more detail, please see Peter's Inaugural Lecture at Imperial College, and recent News items.

SELECTED publications:

Selected publications (for full list see here ):

Hulsmans M, Clauss S, Xiao L et al. Macrophages facilitate electrical conduction in the heartCell 2017/169:510-522.

Scardigli M, Crocini C, Ferrantini C et al. Quantitative assessment of passive electrical properties of the cardiac T-tubular system by FRAP microscopy. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2017/114:5737-5742.

Quinn TA, Camelliti P, Rog-Zielinska EA, Siedlecka U, Poggioli T, O'Toole ET, Knöpfel T & Kohl P. Electrotonic coupling of excitable and nonexcitable cells in the heart revealed by optogenetics. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2017:113:4852–14857.

Gourdie RG, Dimmeler S & Kohl P. Novel therapeutic strategies targeting fibroblasts and fibrosis in heart disease. Nature Reviews Drug Discovery 2016/15: 620–638.

Brandenburg S, Kohl T, Williams G et al. Axial tubule junctions control rapid calcium signaling in atria. J Clin Invest 2016/126:3999–4015

Peyronnet R, Nerbonne JM & Kohl P. Cardiac mechano-gated ion channels and arrhythmias. Circ Res 2016/118 (2), 311-329

EA Rog-Zielinska, RA Norris, P Kohl & R Markwald. The living scar - cardiac fibroblasts and the injured heart. Trends Mol Med 2016/22:99-114.

Kohl P & Gourdie RG. Fibroblast-myocyte electrotonic coupling: Does it occur in native cardiac tissue? J Mol Cell Cardiol 2014/70:37-46.

Botcherby et al. Fast measurement of sarcomere length and cell orientation in Langendorff-perfused hearts using remote focusing microscopy. Circ Res 2013/113:863-70.

Yan et al. Palette of fluorinated voltage-sensitive hemicyanine dyes. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2012/109:20443-8.

Lee et al. Simultaneous voltage and calcium mapping of genetically purified human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiac myocyte monolayers. Circ Res 2012/110:1556-63.

Bub et al. Temporal pixel multiplexing for simultaneous high-speed, high-resolution imaging. Nat Methods 2010/7:209-11.

Iribe et al. Axial stretch of rat single ventricular cardiomyocytes causes an acute and transient increase in Ca2+ spark rate. Circ Res 2009/104:787-95.



Zgierski-Johnston CM, Ayub S, Fernández MC, et al., 2019, Cardiac pacing using transmural multi-LED probes in channelrhodopsin-expressing mouse hearts., Prog Biophys Mol Biol

Chen J, Arentz T, Cochet H, et al., 2019, Extent and spatial distribution of left atrial arrhythmogenic sites, late gadolinium enhancement at magnetic resonance imaging, and low-voltage areas in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation: comparison of imaging vs. electrical parameters of fibrosis and arrhythmogenesis, Europace, Vol:21, ISSN:1099-5129, Pages:1484-1493

Karoutas A, Szymanski W, Rausch T, et al., 2019, The NSL complex maintains nuclear architecture stability via lamin A/C acetylation, Nature Cell Biology, Vol:21, ISSN:1465-7392, Pages:1248-+

Verheyen J, Kohl P, Peyronnet R, 2019, The Institute for Experimental Cardiovascular Medicine in Freiburg., Biophys Rev, Vol:11, ISSN:1867-2450, Pages:675-677


Krebs K, Schmidt BL, Dufner B, et al., 2019, Adventitial macrophages invade the atherosclerotic plaque, 2nd Joint Meeting of the German-Society-for-Immunology (DGfl) and the Italian-Society-of-Immunology-Clinical-Immunology-and-Allergology (SIICA), WILEY, Pages:239-240, ISSN:0014-2980

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