The YAMSA Foundation

The  Young Alliance Against Multiple System Atrophy, YAMSA in short, was founded by 12 students at a summer school hosted by the German National Academic Foundation ("Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes", which is the largest and oldest fellowship program for students in Germany) in 2016. Our group works interdisciplinary and combines various subjects: medical students and doctors (majority), psychology, biomedicine, chemistry and bioentrepreneurship.

Since November 2018 we are also a registered charitable association. We see a lot of potential in MSA-research: it can be a model system for other alpha-synucleopathies which don't draw a lot of attention by the public or researchers.

All activities within the foundation (membership management, finances, meetings) are organised by the board which also represents the foundation legally. Since it's foundation these are:

- Alexander Bernhardt, president

- Andreas Roßmann, Vice president

- Isabel Friedrich, Treasurer

All our members including the board work on an honorary basis.


  • Carrying out a multi-centre research projects about MSA
  • Promoting MSA research
  • Promoting awareness and distributing information about MSA (e.g. via our homepage)
  • Promoting the creation of a database of German-speaking MSA patients who are willing to participate in future studies
  • Creating contacts between MSA-researchers (especially young researchers)
  • Promoting the foundation of an association of German-speaking MSA patients

We are supported in our effort by our mentors Prof. Wolfgang Oertel,  Prof. Johannes Levin and Prof. Armin Giese, renowned researchers in the field of neurodegeneration.

Our articles of association can be found here (German):

Our member statutes (German):


Tabea Schroeter

Tabea is a physician at the university hospital Jena. She represents YAMSA in Jena.

Alexander Bernhardt 

Alexander is a physician at the university hospital of Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich. He is president of the foundation and represents YAMSA in Heidelberg, Marburg and Munich. He is responsible for the homepage.

Isabel Friedrich

Isabel is a physician at the university hospital in Leipzig. She is treasurer of YAMSA and represents YAMSA in Leipzig.

Sabrina Katzdobler

Sabrina works as a physician at the LMU Munich University hospital. 

Emre Kocakavuk

Emre is a physician at the university hospital in Essen. He reprents YAMSA in Essen.

Eliana Nachman

Eliana is a Postdoc at the VIB Center for Brain & Disease Research KU Leuven. She works on molecular mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases.

Marc Oeller

Marc is PostDoc at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, Munich. He is among other aspects responsible for the homepage.

Kevin Peikert

Kevin works as a physician at the University hospital Rostock. He reprents YAMSA in Rostock and Dresden.

Malte works as a physician at the university hospital in Münster. He represents YAMSA in Beelitz and Münster.

Malte Roderigo

Andreas Roßmann

Andreas studied medicine at the Technical University of Munich. He works as a physician in the Augustinum clinic Munich. He is vice president of YAMSA and reprents YAMSA in Munich.

Lina Stauber

Lina works as a physician at the university hospital in Regensburg. She represents YAMSA in Regensburg.


Professor Dr. Armin Giese

Professor Dr. Armin Giese is Professor for Neuropathology at the  Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich since 2008. His research focuses on the molecular foundations of protein aggregation in neurodegenerative diseases.

He was able to identify new inhibitors with excellent pharmacological properties against the aggregation of  such proteins in different animal models. In 2013 he co-founded  MODAG GmbH, to promote the development of these drugs, which could potentially be used against MSA, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, amongst others.

Professor Dr. Johannes Levin

Professor Dr. Levin works in the neurology department of the university of munich since 2006. He is one of the leading investigators in a study assessing the efficacy of Epigallocatechin-3-gallat (EGCG), which is a natural product contained in green tea, as a therapy against MSA (PROMESA study).

The study is based on the idea of inhibiting the protein aggregation as a way of slowing down the progress of the disease. During his doctoral thesis he investigated disease-associated misfolding of prion proteins.

Professor Dr. Dr. h.c. Wolfgang Oertel

Professor Dr. Dr. h.c. Wolfgang Oertel was director of the neurological university school in Marburg  from 1996 to 2014, from 2007 to 2011 president of the German Parkinson Society and from 2011 to 2012 president of the German Neurology Society. Some of his accomplishments in the field of neurodegenerative diseases are listed following. 

He founded the German Parkinson Competency Network (1999), the German Parkinson's Study Group (2003), the German Brain Bank for Neurodegenerative Diseases in Munich (1994) and initiated the Hertie-Institute for Brain Research in Tübingen.  Prof. Oertel is Hertie-Senior-Professor at the University of  Marburg since 2014.


Lea Wilhelm

M.Sc. Lea Wilhelm studied psychology at the Freie Universität Berlin. She is currently training to become a psychotherapist, combined with studies in psychotherapy at the Psychologische Hochschule Berlin.

She scientifically advises YAMSA, focusing on the current study.