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Dr. Astrid Sasse
Associate Professor, Pharmacy
Associate Professor, Trinity Inst. of Neurosciences (TCIN)


Dr. Sasse is a certified pharmacist who obtained her PhD in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from the Free University Berlin, Germany. She conducted post-doctoral studies funded by a Marie-Curie Fellowship (FP5) at INSERM in Paris, France on the identification of a human histamine H3 receptor subtype and genetic linkage of SNPs on histamine H3 and H4 receptors to schizophrenia. As a senior staff scientist at the Max-Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Goettingen, Germany she determined corticotropin-releasing factor receptor binding by ex vivo autoradiography, before joining the International Center for Neurotherapeutics (ICNT) at DCU in 2004 where she was involved in the development of neurotoxins derived from botulinum toxin by protein engineering methods. In October 2008, she was appointed as Lecturer in Pharmaceutical Chemistry at the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at TCD. Her research is focused on the development of small ligands for G-Protein coupled receptors (e.g., histamine H3/H4 receptor), and the identification, localization, and pharmacological characterization of new receptor subtypes, as well as the genetic linkage of those receptors to psychiatric disorders.

Publications and Further Research Outputs

Peer-Reviewed Publications

Guilherme Venâncio Símaro, Marivane Lemos [ ..], Helen Sheridan, Márcio Luis Andrade e Silva, Jairo Kenupp Bastos., Antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activities of Copaifera pubiflora Benth oleoresin and its major metabolite ent-hardwickiic acid, Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 2021 Journal Article, 2021 DOI

Jinfan Wang, Sinead Corr, Astrid Sasse, Helen Sheridan, Scientific evaluation of traditional chinese medicine (TCD) Houttuynia cordata Thunb (Yu xing Tao) A case study., Planta Medica, 69th Internatinal Congress and Annual Meeting of the Society for Medicinal Plant and Natural Product Research, Bonn, Germany, Sept. 6-8 2021, Thieme, 2021 Published Abstract, 2021

Eissa N, Sadeq A, Sasse A and Sadek B , Role of Spectrum Disorder and the Emergence of Brain Histaminergic System. Lessons Also for BPSD? , Frontiers in Pharmacology, 11, 2020, p886- Journal Article, 2020 URL TARA - Full Text DOI

Aaron Koay, Fiona Shannon McLoone, Astrid Sasse, Michael Heinrich and Helen Sheridan, Exploring the Irish National Folklore ethnography database ( for open data research on Traditional Medicine use in post-famine Ireland. An early example of Citizen Science, Frontiers in Pharmacology-Ethnopharmacology, 2020 Journal Article, 2020 TARA - Full Text URL DOI

Ryan, T.J.; Grimes, T.; Henman, M.C.; Sheachnasaigh, E.N.; O'Dwyer, M.; Roche, C.; Ryder, S.A.; Sasse, A.; Walsh, J.J. & D'Arcy, D.M, Design and Implementation of an Integrated Competency-Focused Pharmacy Programme: A Case Report., Pharmacy, 7, (3), 2019, Journal Article, 2019 DOI

Eissa N, Al-Houqani M, Sadeq A, Ojha SK, Sasse A, Sadek B., Current Enlightenment About Etiology and Pharmacological Treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder., Frontiers in neuroscience, 12, 2018, p304 Journal Article, 2018 DOI

Methodologies to identify and analyze genetic polymorphisms for human histamine receptors in, editor(s)Ekaterini Tiligada, Madeleine Ennis , Histamine Receptors as Drug Targets, Humana Press, Springer Nature, 2017, pp1 - 18, [Stephany Micallef, Astrid Sasse] Book Chapter, 2017

Dul M, Paluch KJ, Healy AM, Sasse A, Tajber L, Optimisation of the self-assembly process: production of stable, alginate-based polyelectrolyte nanocomplexes with protamine, Journal of Nanoparticle Research, 19, (6), 2017, p221 - 231 Journal Article, 2017 DOI TARA - Full Text

Erick Motta, Marivane Lemos, Juliana C Costa, PhD. Vilmar C Banderó-Filho.; Astrid Sasse, Helen Sheridan, Jairo K Bastos, , Galloylquinic acid derivatives from Copaifera langsdorffii leaves display gastroprotective activity, Chemico-Biological Interactions, 261, 2017, p145 - 155 Journal Article, 2017 DOI

Fiona Shannon, Astrid Sasse, Helen Sheridan and Michael Heinrich , Are identities oral? Understanding ethnobotanical knowledge after Irish independence (1937-1939), Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine, 13, 2017, p65- Journal Article, 2017 DOI URL TARA - Full Text

Genetic Polymorphisms in the Histamine Receptor Family in, editor(s)Patrizio Blandina and Maria Beatrice Passani , Histamine Receptors - Preclinical and Clinical Aspects, Switzerland, Humana Press, Springer Nature, 2016, pp51 - 74, [Micallef, S and Sasse, A] Book Chapter, 2016 TARA - Full Text DOI

Dul M, Paluch KJ, Kelly H, Healy AM, Sasse A, Tajber L, Self-assembled carrageenan/protamine polyelectrolyte nanoplexes-Investigation of critical parameters governing their formation and characteristics., Carbohydrate Polymers, 123, 2015, p339 - 349 Journal Article, 2015 DOI TARA - Full Text

Fabio Boylan, Astrid Sasse, Helen Sheridan(ed.), Holistic Approaches to Health Maintenance in the BSc. Pharmacy Degree at Trinity College, Institute of Technology, Dundalk, Ireland, 19-20th June 2013, 2013 Proceedings of a Conference, 2013

Micallef S, Stark H, Sasse A, Polymorphisms and genetic linkage of histamine receptors., Life sciences, 93, (15), 2013, p487-494 Journal Article, 2013 DOI

Sasse, A., Histamine H4R Ligand Database, Inflammation Research, 42nd Annual Meeting of the European Histamine Reserach Society (EHRS), Lodz, Poland, 8-11th May 2013, 62, (1), Springer, 2013, ppS7 - S7 Meeting Abstract, 2013 DOI

Micallef, S, Quinn E, Morris, D, Sasse, A., MICROSATELLITE REPEAT EXPANSIONS IN HUMAN HISTAMINE(4) RECEPTOR GENE, Inflammation Reserach, 41st Annual Meeting of the European Histamine Research Society (EHRS), Belfast, Northern Ireland, UK, 2-5th May 2012, 61, (2), Springer, 2012, ppS52 - S52 Meeting Abstract, 2012 DOI

Micallef, S., Quinn, E., Morris, D., Sasse, A., Genetic Polymorphism in Human Histamine 4 Receptor Gene and Schizophrenia, Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, Washington DC, USA, 12-16th Nov 2011, 2011, pp259 Meeting Abstract, 2011

Multiple Steps in the Blockade of Exocytosis by Botulinum Neurotoxins in, editor(s)Jankovic, J., Albanese, A., Atassi, M.Z., Dolly, J.O., Hallett, M., Mayer N. , Botulinum Toxin - Therapeutic Clinical Practice and Science, Philadelphia, Saunders Elsevier, 2009, pp1 - 14, [Dolly, J.O., Meng, J., Wang, J., Lawrence, G.W., Boedeker, M., Zurawski, T.H., Sasse, A. ] Book Chapter, 2009

Meng, J, Ovsepian, SV, Wang, J, Pickering, M, Sasse, A, Aoki, KR, Lawrence, GW, Dolly, JO, Activation of TRPV1 mediates calcitonin gene-related peptide release, which excites trigeminal sensory neurons and is attenuated by a retargeted botulinum toxin with anti-nociceptive potential., The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 29, (15), 2009, p4981 - 4992 Journal Article, 2009 URL DOI

Wang, J, Meng, J, Lawrence, GW, Zurawski, TH, Sasse, A, Bodeker, MO, Gilmore, MA, Fernández-Salas, E, Francis, J, Steward, LE, Aoki, KR, Dolly, JO, Novel chimeras of botulinum neurotoxins A and E unveil contributions from the binding, translocation, and protease domains to their functional characteristics., The Journal of biological chemistry, 283, (25), 2008, p16993 - 17002 Journal Article, 2008 URL DOI

Weiss, C, Sametsky, E, Sasse, A, Spiess, J, Disterhoft, JF, Acute stress facilitates trace eyeblink conditioning in C57BL/6 male mice and increases the excitability of their CA1 pyramidal neurons., Learning & memory (Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y.), 12, (2), 2005, p138 - 143 Journal Article, 2005 URL DOI URL

Tezval, H, Jahn, O, Todorovic, C, Sasse, A, Eckart, K, Spiess, J, Cortagine, a specific agonist of corticotropin-releasing factor receptor subtype 1, is anxiogenic and antidepressive in the mouse model., Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 101, (25), 2004, p9468 - 9473 Journal Article, 2004 URL URL DOI

Sasse, A, Ligneau, X, Rouleau, A, Elz, S, Ganellin, CR, Arrang, JM, Schwartz, JC, Schunack, W, Stark, H, Influence of bulky substituents on histamine h(3) receptor agonist/antagonist properties., Journal of medicinal chemistry, 45, (18), 2002 Journal Article, 2002

Wicek, M., Kiec-Kononowicz, K., Sasse, A., Ligneau, X., Schwartz, J.-C., Schunack, W., Stark, H., Histamine receptor expression: Impact of lipophilicity on the pharmacological properties of histamine H3-receptor antagonists of the cycloalkyl carbamate class, 51, (SUPPL.1), 2002 Journal Article, 2002

Nickel, T, Bauer, U, Schlicker, E, Kathmann, M, Göthert, M, Sasse, A, Stark, H, Schunack, W, Novel histamine H(3)-receptor antagonists and partial agonists with a non-aminergic structure., British journal of pharmacology, 132, (8), 2001 Journal Article, 2001 DOI

Sasse, A, Schunack, W, Stark, H, Separation of chiral 4-substituted imidazole derivatives by cyclodextrin-modified capillary electrophoresis., Biomedical chromatography : BMC, 15, (1), 2001 Journal Article, 2001 DOI

Schwartz, J.C., Morisset, S., Rouleau, A., Tardivel-Lacombe, J., Gbahou, F., Ligneau, X., Héron, A., Sasse, A., Stark, H., Schunack, W., Ganellin, R.C., Arrang, J.M., Application of genomics to drug design: The example of the histamine H3 receptor, 11, (6), 2001, p441-448 Journal Article, 2001

Morisset, S, Sasse, A, Gbahou, F, Héron, A, Ligneau, X, Tardivel-Lacombe, J, Schwartz, JC, Arrang, JM, The rat H3 receptor: gene organization and multiple isoforms., Biochemical and biophysical research communications, 280, (1), 2001 Journal Article, 2001 DOI

Morini, G., Grandi, D., Sasse, A., Stark, H., Schunack, W., Gastroprotective activity of the novel histamine H3-receptor agonist FUB 407, 50, (SUPPL. 2), 2001 Journal Article, 2001

Sasse, A, Ligneau, X, Sadek, B, Elz, S, Pertz, HH, Ganellin, CR, Arrang, JM, Schwartz, JC, Schunack, W, Stark, H, Benzophenone derivatives and related compounds as potent histamine H3-receptor antagonists and potential PET/SPECT ligands., Archiv der Pharmazie, 334, (2), 2001 Journal Article, 2001

Sasse, A, Sadek, B, Ligneau, X, Elz, S, Pertz, HH, Luger, P, Ganellin, CR, Arrang, JM, Schwartz, JC, Schunack, W, Stark, H, New histamine H(3)-receptor ligands of the proxifan series: imoproxifan and other selective antagonists with high oral in vivo potency., Journal of medicinal chemistry, 43, (17), 2000 Journal Article, 2000

Sasse, A, Stark, H, Ligneau, X, Elz, S, Reidemeister, S, Ganellin, CR, Schwartz, JC, Schunack, W, (Partial) agonist/antagonist properties of novel diarylalkyl carbamates on histamine H3 receptors., Bioorganic & medicinal chemistry, 8, (5), 2000 Journal Article, 2000

Kiec-Kononowicz, K, Wiecek, M, Sasse, A, Ligneau, X, Elz, S, Ganellin, CR, Schwartz, JC, Stark, H, Schunack, W, Importance of the lipophilic group in carbamates having histamine H3-receptor antagonist activity., Die Pharmazie, 55, (5), 2000 Journal Article, 2000

Sasse, A, Kiec-Kononowicz, K, Stark, H, Motyl, M, Reidemeister, S, Ganellin, CR, Ligneau, X, Schwartz, JC, Schunack, W, Development of chiral N-alkylcarbamates as new leads for potent and selective H3-receptor antagonists: synthesis, capillary electrophoresis, and in vitro and oral in vivo activity., Journal of medicinal chemistry, 42, (4), 1999 Journal Article, 1999 DOI

Sasse, A, Stark, H, Reidemeister, S, Hüls, A, Elz, S, Ligneau, X, Ganellin, CR, Schwartz, JC, Schunack, W, Novel partial agonists for the histamine H(3) receptor with high in vitro and in vivo activity., Journal of medicinal chemistry, 42, (20), 1999 Journal Article, 1999

Non-Peer-Reviewed Publications

Partial Agonists for the Histamine H3 Receptor with High in Vivo Activity in, editor(s)Watanabe, T., Timmerman, H., Yanai, K. , Histamine Research in the New Millennium, Elsevier Science, 2001, pp77 - 82, [Schunack, W., Sasse, A., Stark, H., Elz, S., Ligneau, X., Ganellin, C.R., Schwartz, J.-C] Book Chapter, 2001

The Histamine H3 Receptor: Gene Organization, Multiple Isoforms, Constitutive Activity and Molecular Pharmacology in, editor(s)Watanabe, T., Timmerman, H., Yanai, K. , Histamine Research in the New Millennium, Elsevier Science, 2001, pp9 - 21, [Arrang, J.-M., Morisset, S., Rouleau, A., Tarvidel-Lacombe, J., Gbahou, F., Ligneau, X., Héron, A., Sasse, A., Stark, H., Schunack, W., Ganellin, C.R., Schwartz, J.-C., ] Book Chapter, 2001

Research Expertise


  • Title
    • Recent Advances in Histamine H4 Research
  • Summary
    • COST Action BM0806
  • Funding Agency
    • EU RTD Framework Programme
  • Date From
    • 2009
  • Date To
    • 2013
  • Title
    • Identifying novel therapeutic targets for patients carrying single nucleotide polymorphisms in schizophrenia
  • Funding Agency
    • European Social Fund (Malta)
  • Date From
    • April 2010
  • Date To
    • Aug 2013


Ageing, memory and other cognitive processes; Alzheimer's disease; Analytical chemistry; Biomedical sciences; Clinical genetics; Commercialisation of scientific research; Drug development and evaluation; Drug discovery; Drug discovery, profiling, targeting; Imaging Techniques; In vitro testing, trial methods; Medicinal Chemistry; Molecular Biology; Neurochemistry and neuropharmacology; Neuroendocrinology; Neuropharmacology; Neuroscience; Protein sequence, function and expression; Proteins, enzymology and protein engineering; Schizophrenia; Spectroscopy; Synthesis and new molecules



European Histamine Research Society (EHRS) Council Member 2018 -

European Histamine Research Society (EHRS) Council Member 2012

Leader of Working Group 3 of COST Action BM0806 2011

Financial Rapporteur, COST Action BM0806 2011

Irish Representative, Management Committee of COST Action BM0806 'Recent Advances in Histamine Receptor H4R Research'. 2009

Awards and Honours

Ernst-Reuter-Prize of the Free University of Berlin 2000

Carl-Wilhelm-Scheele-Prize of the German Pharmaceutical Society (DPhG) 2000

1st Poster Price during the XXIXth Annual meeting of the European Histamine Research Society (EHRS) in Nemi/Rome 2000


PSI - Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland 2012 – 2016

FENS, Federation of European Neuroscience Societies 2011

EHRS, European Histamine Research Society 2009

NI, Neuroscience Ireland 2009

SFN, Society for Neuroscience 2003

EUFEPS, European Federation for Pharmaceutical Sciences 1998

DPhG, Deutsche Pharmazeutische Gesellschaft (German Pharmaceutical Society) 1997