Portrait Prof. Dr. med. Heribert Schunkert - DHM

Prof. Dr. med. Heribert Schunkert
Director of Department
Medical director of DHM

Secretariat Mrs. Dagmar Siebe
Tel: +49 (0) 89 1218-4073


Heribert Schunkert, MD is Professor for Cardiology at the Technische Universität München as well as Director of the Cardiology Dept. and Medical Director of the German Heart Centre Munich

In 1985, Dr. Schunkert started residency in Internal Medicine at the University Hospital of the RWTH Aachen (head, Prof. Dr. H. G. Sieberth), where he also studied medicine.

In 1988, he began a research fellowship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, USA, where he trained two years in the laboratory of Prof. V. J. Dzau. He then started his training in clinical cardiology with a clinical fellowship at the Beth Israel Hospital Boston, in the department of Prof. W. Grossman. He then returned to Germany where he completed his training at the Universitätsklinikum Regensburg under the directorship of Prof. G. Riegger.

In 1995-96, Dr. Schunkert went back to Boston for a fellowship in interventional cardiology at the Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, USA, with Prof. I. Palacios. He completed his training in internal medicine and cardiology in Regensburg, where he became Associate Professor and head of the attending staff.

From 2002-2012 Prof. Schunkert was Director of the Dept. for Internal Medicine and Cardiology at the University of Lübeck.

In October 2012 Prof. Schunkert he was offered the Chair in Cardiology in Munich.

Prof. Schunkert conducts research in molecular biology and genetics of multifactorial cardiovascular disease. In his initial scientific career he focused on the functional implications of tissue renin-angiotensin systems. He was the first to describe that ACE is formed in the heart, induced by cardiac hypertrophy and also further aggravates this process (JCI 1990, more than 550 citations).

He coordinated several EU-sponsored projects (including Cardiogenics 2005-2010 and CVgenes@target 2012-2017) as well as the European-American Leducq network CADgenomics (2012-2017). He also coordinated consortia of the German Genome Network (NGFN) and the German Systems Medicine initiative (e:Med) both sponsored by the German Ministry of Research (BMBF). He became member of the German Excellence Network of Cardiovascular Research (DZHK) when he chaired the Cardiology Department in Lübeck and extended his membership after his move to Munich.

His current major topic is to identify genetic roots of myocardial infarction (MI). Prof. Schunkert led the consortium that conducted the first meta-analysis on genome wide association studies on MI (NEJM 2007, more than 1500 citations) and discovered with his colleagues basically all currently known genetic variants modulating coronary disease risk (Nat. Genetics 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015; NEJM 2016). Prof. Schunkert also led the research team that identified the role of NO (nitric oxide) and cyclic GMP signaling in MI risk (Nature 2013). His scientific work was honoured with multiple prizes including the Arthur Weber Price and the Franz Gross Price.

Prof. Schunkert is amongst the top 3 most cited German speaking authors. His h-index is 75. He served in the Board of Directors of the German Societies of Hypertension (DHL) as well as Cardiology (DGK). He is the author of more than 500 publications in international journals.

Curriculum Vitae of Prof. Dr. med. Heribert Schunkert

Born on November 10, 1959, German, married since 1987, 2 children

Clinic director Cardiology department of the German Heart Center Munich

Scientific Career
Resident in Medicine, Dept. Internal Medicine II (Chief Prof. Dr. H.G. Sieberth), RWTH Aachen

Research Fellow, Div. of Vascular Medicine (Chief Prof. Dr. V.J. Dzau), Brigham & Women's Hospital, Harvard Med. School, Boston, USA

Clinical Fellow and Instructor in Medicine, Div. of Cardiovascular Medicine, Beth Israel Hospital (Chief Prof. Dr. W. Grossman), Harvard Med. School, Boston, USA

Wissenschaftlicher Assistent der Klinik & Poliklinik für Innere Medizin II der Universität Regensburg

Clinicael Fellow in Cardiology, Klinik und Poliklinik für Innere Medizin II (Director Prof. Dr. G.A.J. Riegger), Universität Regensburg

Fellow for Interventional Cardiology, Cath-Lab (Director Prof. Dr. I. Palacios), Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Med. School, Boston, USA

Assistant and associate professorship, attending physician in cardiology, Klinik und Poliklinik für Innere Medizin II (Direktor Prof. Dr. G.A.J. Riegger), Universität Regensburg

Assistant and associate professorship, head attending staff in cardiology, Klinik und Poliklinik für Innere Medizin II (Director Prof. Dr. G.A.J. Riegger), Universität Regensburg

Professor of internal medicine and cardiology, director of Medizinische Klinik II, Universitätsklinikum Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Lübeck

Clinic director of Cardiology department of the German Heart Center Munich

Medical Director of the German Heart Center Munich

München, im April 2016

Prof. Dr. Heribert Schunkert

Major research interests

Molecular Biology and genetics of cardiovascular diseases

Regulation of myocardial growth processes

Epidemiological aspects of hypertension and coronary heart diseases

Editorial Boards (in part temporarily):

European Journal of Heart Failure
Circulation Cardiovascular Genetics
European Heart Journal
Clinical and Experimental Hypertension
Cardiovascular Drugs and Therapy
Basic Research in Cardiology
Journal of Molecular Medicine
Pharmacogenetics and Genomics

Reviewer for

Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
European Society of Cardiology
British Heart Foundation
Nederlandse Hartstichting
Deutsche Stiftung für Herzforschung
Novartis Stiftung
New England Journal of Medicine
Nature Genetics
European Heart Journal and many others

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Innere Medizin

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herz- und Kreislaufforschung

International Society of Hypertension

Work group "Cardiovascular molecular biology and gene technology” Deutsche Gesellschaft für Kardiologie, 2 years as speaker

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Hypertonie, section science

Board of directors of Deutsche Hochdruckliga e.V.

Co-ordinator EU Consortium Cardiogenics

Co-ordinator BMBF-NGFN Consortium Atherogenomics

Member of project committee NGFN-Plus and NGFN-Transfer, a program of medical genomic research

Member German Center for Cardiovascular Research


Research stipend of Sandoz-Stiftung für Therapeutische Forschung

Walter-Clawiter-Preis of Universität Düsseldorf

Ernst von Leyden Gedächtnismedaille of Berliner Gesellschaft für Innere Medizin

Heisenberg grant recipient of Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

Arthur Weber Preis of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Kardiologie

Science Prize of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Prävention und Rehabilitation

Science Prize of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Hypertonie zur Adipositasforschung

Honorary Award Lecture on Prevention of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Kardiologie

Franz-Gross-Science Prize of Deutsche Hochdruckliga

Silberne Ehrennadel of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Kardiologie – Herz- und Kreislaufforschung

Other responsibilities

Member of supervisory board of Universitätsklinikum Regensburg

Prof. Dr. Heribert Schunkert

Publications Prof. H. Schunkert 2007-2016

1. Samani NJ, Erdmann J, Hall AS, Hengstenberg C, Mangino M, Mayer B, Dixon RJ, Meitinger T, Braund P, Wichmann HE, Barrett JH, Konig IR, Stevens SE, Szymczak S, Tregouet DA, Iles MM, Pahlke F, Pollard H, Lieb W, Cambien F, Fischer M, Ouwehand W, Blankenberg S, Balmforth AJ, Baessler A, Ball SG, Strom TM, Braenne I, Gieger C, Deloukas P, Tobin MD, Ziegler A, Thompson JR, Schunkert H
Genomewide association analysis of coronary artery disease. N Engl J Med 2007;357:443-53 [IF 52,589]

2. Schunkert H, Götz A, Braund P, McGinnis R, Tregouet DA, Mangino M, Linsel-Nitschke P, Cambien F, Hengstenberg C, Stark K, Blankenberg S, Tiret L, Ducimetiere P, Keniry A, Ghori MJ, Schreiber S, El Mokhtari NE, Hall AS, Dixon RJ, Goodall AH, Liptau H, Pollard H, Schwarz DF, Hothorn LA, Wichmann HE, König IR, Fischer M, Meisinger C, Ouwehand W, Deloukas P, Thompson JR, Erdmann J, Ziegler A, Samani NJ.
Repeated replication and a prospective meta-analysis of the association between chromosome 9p21.3 and coronary artery disease. Circulation 2008;117:1675-84 [IF 14,595]

3. Schunkert H, Samani NJ
Elevated C-reactive protein in atherosclerosis—chicken or egg? N Engl J Med 2008;359:1953-5 (Editorial) [IF 50,017]

4. Reppel M, Radke PW, Schunkert H
Quality of life with PCI versus medical therapy in stable coronary disease. N Engl J Med 2008;359:2290-1 (Letter)

5. Erdmann J, Grosshennig A, Braund PS, König IR, Hengstenberg C, Hall AS, Linsel-Nitschke P, Kathiresan S, Wright B, Trégouët DA, Cambien F, Bruse P, Aherrahrou Z, Wagner AK, Stark K, Schwartz SM, Salomaa V, Elosua R, Melander O, Voight BF, O'Donnell CJ, Peltonen L, Siscovick DS, Altshuler D, Merlini PA, Peyvandi F, Bernardinelli L, Ardissino D, Schillert A, Blankenberg S, Zeller T, Wild P, Schwarz DF, Tiret L, Perret C, Schreiber S, El Mokhtari NE, Schäfer A, März W, Renner W, Bugert P, Klüter H, Schrezenmeir J, Rubin D, Ball SG, Balmforth AJ, Wichmann HE, Meitinger T, Fischer M, Meisinger C, Baumert J, Peters A, Ouwehand WH, Deloukas P, Thompson JR, Ziegler A, Samani NJ, Schunkert H
New susceptibility locus for coronary artery disease on chromosome 3q22.3. Nat Genet 2009;41:280-2 [IF 30,259]

6. Samani NJ, Tomaszewski M, Schunkert H
The personal genome—the future of personalised medicine? Lancet 2010;375:1497-8 (Editorial) [IF 28,400]

7. Linsel-Nitschke P, Samani NJ, Schunkert H
Sorting out cholesterol and coronary artery disease. N Engl J Med. 2010;363:2462-3 (short review) [IF 52,589]

8. Schunkert H, König IR, Kathiresan S, Reilly MP, Assimes TL, Holm H, Preuss M, Stewart AFR, Barbalic M, Gieger C, Absher D, Aherrahrou Z, Allayee H, Altshuler D, Anand SS, Andersen K, Anderson JL, Ardissino D, Ball SG, Balmforth AJ, Barnes TA, Becker DM, Becker LC, Berger K, Bis JC, Boekholdt SM, Boerwinkle E, Braund PS, Brown MJ, Burnett MS, Buysschaert J, Ye S, Zeller T, Ziegler A, Cambien F, Goodall AH, Cupples LA, Quertermous T, März W, Hengstenberg C, Blankenberg S, Ouwehand W, Hall AS, Deloukas P, Thompson JR, Stefansson K, Roberts R, Thorsteinsdottir U, O’Donnell CJ, McPherson R, Erdmann J, Samani NJ for the CARDIoGRAM Consortium.
Thirteen novel genetic loci affecting risk of coronary artery disease. Nat Genet 2011;43:333-8

9. The CARDIoGRAMplusC4D Consortium (Schunkert H shared senior author)
Large-scale association analysis identifies new risk loci for coronary artery disease. Nat Genet (in press)

10. Zanoni P, Khetarpal SA, Larach DB, Hancock-Cerutti WF, Millar JS, Cuchel M, DerOhannessian S, Kontush A, Surendran P, Saleheen D, Trompet S, Jukema JW, De Craen A, Deloukas P, Sattar N, Ford I, Packard C, Majumder Aa, Alam DS, Di Angelantonio E, Abecasis G, Chowdhury R, Erdmann J, Nordestgaard BG, Nielsen SF, Tybjærg-Hansen A, Schmidt RF, Kuulasmaa K, Liu DJ, Perola M, Blankenberg S, Salomaa V, Männistö S, Amouyel P, Arveiler D, Ferrieres J, Müller-Nurasyid M, Ferrario M, Kee F, Willer CJ, Samani N, Schunkert H, Butterworth AS, Howson JM, Peloso GM, Stitziel NO, Danesh J, Kathiresan S, Rader DJ; CHD Exome+ Consortium; Rare variant in scavenger receptor BI raises HDL cholesterol and increases risk of coronary heart disease. CARDIoGRAM Exome Consortium; Global Lipids Genetics Consortium. Science. 2016 11;351:1166-71.

11. Myocardial Infarction Genetics and CARDIoGRAM Exome Consortia Investigators (Schunkert H senior author).
Coding Variation in ANGPTL4, LPL, and SVEP1 and the Risk of Coronary Disease. N Engl J Med. 2016;3 74:1134-44