Dr. Rainald Schmidt-Kastner, M.D.


Associate Professor

Florida Atlantic University 777 Glades Road

Boca Raton, FL 33431

Office Building One, Room Room 225

p: 561-297-1360


Department: Clinical Neurosciences


Rainald Schmidt-Kastner, M.D., serves as Associate Professor of Neurology. He holds an MD degree through thesis (neuroanatomy) from University of Duesseldorf and a research-teaching degree in physiology (Habilitation) from Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany. He serves as Course Director for Neuroscience and Behavior; teaches medical students in neuroscience, neuroanatomy, physiology, embryology and macro-anatomy of internal organs; serves as facilitator for group teaching; and instructs graduate students in integrated morphology and brain disease. He serves as Section Editor for an international neuroscience journal and continues to perform scholarly activity in the area of brain ischemia-hypoxia. .


  • 1977-1983: Studies of Human Medicine, Medical Faculty, Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Germany, completed by "Staatsexamen" (National Exam in Medicine)
  • 1984: MD-Doktor der Medizin (Dr.med.) by thesis (summa cum laude), Medical Faculty, University of Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Germany
  • 1992: Qualification to Lecture in Physiology and Evidence for Scholarly Research ("Habilitation" and "Privat-Dozent" - PD), Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany
  • 2011-Present: Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida
  • 2008-2011: Clinical Assistant Professor of Integrated Medical Science
  • 2006-2008: Visiting Assistant Professor of Integrated Medical Science
  • 2005-2006: Visiting Scholar, Scientist, College of Science, 2005-2006
  • 2002-2004: Research Associate Professor, Dept. of Neurology, University of Miami School of Medicine
  • 1997-2002: Research Assistant Professor, Dept. of Neurology, University of Miami School of Medicine
  • 1994-1996: Visiting Scientist, Neuroscience Research Institute, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada
  • 1990-1994: Visiting Scientist, Karolinska Institute, Depts. Clinical Neurophysiology, Histology-Neurobiology, and Neuroscience, Stockholm, Sweden
  • 1987-1992: Scientific Assistant (postdoctoral), Ruhr-University Bochum, Dept. Neurophysiology, Germany
  • 1983-1987: Scientific Assistant (postdoctoral), Max-Planck-Institute for Neurological Research, Cologne, Germany

Peer-Reviewed Publications

  • Schmidt-Kastner, R. Genomic approach to selective vulnerability of the hippocampus in brain ischemia-hypoxia. Neuroscience, August 2015, in press
  • Schmidt-Kastner, R., van Os, J., Esquivel, G., Steinbusch, H.W.M., Rutten, B.P.F.  An environmental analysis of genes associated with schizophrenia: hypoxia and vascular factors as interacting elements in the neurodevelopmental model. Molecular Psychiatry, 17 (12) 1194-1205, 2012 (Advance Online Publication, Jan. 31, 2012)
  • Schmidt-Kastner, R., Kreczmanski, P., Preising, M., Diederen, R., Schmitz, C., Reis, D., Blanks, J., Dorey, C.K. Expression of the diabetes risk gene wolframin (WFS1) in the human retina. Experimental Eye Res. 89: 568-574 (June 12 Epub ahead of print), 2009. 
  • Schmidt-Kastner, R., Aguirre-Chen, C., Kietzmann, T., Saul, I., Busto, R., Ginsberg, M.D. Nuclear localization of the hypoxia-regulated pro-apoptotic protein BNIP3 after global brain ischemia in the rat hippocampus. Brain Res. 1001: 133-142, 2004 
  • Schmidt-Kastner, R., Truettner, J., Zhao, W., Saul, I., Busto, R., Ginsberg, M.D. Transient changes of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mRNA expression in hippocampus during moderate ischemia induced by bilateral common carotid artery occlusions in the rat. Mol. Brain Res. 92: 157-166, 2001.
  • Schmidt-Kastner, R., Truettner, J., Zhao, W., Belayev, L., Krieger, C., Busto, R., Ginsberg, M.D. Differential changes of bax, caspase-3 and p21 mRNA expression after transient focal brain ischemia in the rat. Mol. Brain Res.79: 88-101, 2000.
  • Schmidt-Kastner, R., Fliss, H., Hakim, A.M. Subtle neuronal death in striatum after short forebrain ischemia in rat detected by in situ end-labelling for DNA damage. Stroke 28:  163-170, 1997.
  • Wolf, H.K., Buslei, R., Schmidt-Kastner, R., Schmidt-Kastner, P.K., Pietsch, T., Wiestler, O.D., Blümcke, I. NeuN: A useful neuronal marker for diagnostic histopathology. J. Histochem. Cytochem. 44: 1167-1171, 1996.
  • Schmidt-Kastner, R., Wetmore, C., Olson, L. Comparative study of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mRNA and protein at the cellular level suggests multiple roles in hippocampus, striatum and cortex.  Neuroscience 74: 161-183, 1996.
  • Schmidt-Kastner, R., Freund, T.F. Selective vulnerability of the hippocampus in brain ischemia. Commentary. Neuroscience 40: 599-636, 1991

View Pubmed Feed

Scholarly Activity

Research interests

  • brain ischemia and hypoxia; selective vulnerability of the hippocampus; status epilepticus; retinal ischemia; optic nerve atrophy; gene x hypoxia interactions in neurodevelopmental disorders and neurodegeneration; teaching tools in medical neuroscience

Teaching interests

  • neuroscience, neuroanatomy, anatomy and embryology of internal organs, physiology (GI, kidney)

Honors and awards

  • Heisenberg fellowship (1993-97), Dwight W.Warren Award for Excellence in Teaching (2007/08), 2014 Outstanding Course Director 


  • Section Editor for Neurodegeneration, Neuroprotection and Disease oriented Neuroscience, “Neuroscience” (IBRO Journal), 2011-present 
Additional Information
The Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine offers students a variety of educational programs and degrees.
Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine
Florida Atlantic University
777 Glades Road, BC-71
Boca Raton, FL 33431