Headshot photo of Stefanie Kaech Petrie, Ph.D.

Stefanie Kaech Petrie, Ph.D.

  • Associate Professor of Neurology, School of Medicine
  • Director, Advanced Light Microscopy Core
  • Neuroscience Graduate Program, School of Medicine
  • Jungers Center for Neurosciences Research


Research Interests

The first time I watched a time-lapse recording of a living cell, I became fascinated by the power of digital microscopy. The discovery of GFP and its application to visualize dynamic events inside cells has revolutionized modern cell biology. I first used this enabling technology to study how structural proteins give a neuron its shape. Arriving in Portland, I began investigating how motor proteins traffick membrane proteins along neuronal axons and dendrites. I also began to share my knowledge about the uses of light microscopy in basic research by teaching OHSU researchers how to operate shared microscope equipment. In my current role as the Director of the Advanced Light Microscopy Core, the university-wide shared resource for light microscopy, I get to discuss imaging projects with students, postdocs, and faculty alike. We teach them the proper use of the high-end equipment in the Core and advise on sample preparation and data analysis. The most rewarding aspect of my work is that I get to share their excitement when the images captured provide visual and quantitative answers to their scientific pursuits.


Dr. Kaech Petrie obtained her Ph.D. in Cell Biology in 1991 at the University of Basel, Switzerland. After a short post-doctoral experience at NINDS-NIH in Bethesda, Maryland, she returned to the Friedrich Miescher Institute in Basel, Switzerland, where she specialized in the visualization of dynamic processes in living cells using GFP, a technology just emerging at that time. She joined OHSU in 2000 and transitioned to the Director of the Advanced Light Microscopy Core at The Jungers Center in 2009.

Education and training

    • Ph.D., 1991, University of Basel

Areas of interest

  • Neuronal cell biology



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