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Maximilian Haertinger
Maximilian Haertinger, BSc, MSc

Department of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery
Position: PHD Student

ORCID: 0000-0003-2478-6477
T +43 1 40400 41700


Exosomes; Nerve Regeneration; Peripheral Nerves; Regenerative Medicine; Schwann Cells; Stem Cells

Research group(s)

Research interests

In recent years, extracellular vesicles (EVs) have emerged as promising mechanisms of signal transduction, however, we are only beginning to fathom the extent of their roles in physiological and pathophysiological processes. My research aims at deciphering how EVs transmit signals and alter the recipient cells behaviour, especially in the peripheral nervous system. In my current project, I investigate the initial interaction of EVs with Schwann cells, the key players of peripheral nerve regeneration. Eventually, understanding the basic mechanisms of EV signaling may allow us to employ EVs in targeted therapeutic approaches. 

Techniques, methods & infrastructure

  • Primary rodent cell cultures
    • Schwann cells and adipose tissue derived mesenchymal stem cells
  • Extracellular vesicles: isolation & characterization
    • Ultracentrifugation, nanoparticle tracking analysis, atomic force microscopy
  • Multimodal imaging
    • Electron microscopy (SEM/TEM/CryoEM)
    • Confocal laser scanning microscopy
    • Live cell imaging
    • Imaging flow cytometry

Selected publications

  1. Haertinger, M. et al. (2020) ‘Adipose Stem Cell-Derived Extracellular Vesicles Induce Proliferation of Schwann Cells via Internalization’, Cells, 9(1), p. 163. Available at:
  2. Weiss, T. et al. (2020) ‘Automated image analysis of stained cytospins to quantify Schwann cell purity and proliferation’, PLOS ONE. Edited by R. Linden, 15(5), p. e0233647. Available at:
  3. Millesi, F. et al. (2020) ‘Defining the regenerative effects of native spider silk fibers on primary Schwann cells, sensory neurons, and nerve‐associated fibroblasts’, The FASEB Journal, 35(2). Available at:
  4. Borger, A. et al. (2022) ‘How miRNAs Regulate Schwann Cells during Peripheral Nerve Regeneration—A Systemic Review.‘ Int. J. Mol. Sci. 23, 3440. Available at: