Dr Lina Schiffer PhD

Dr Lina Schiffer

Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research
Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Contact details

College of Medical and Dental Sciences
Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Lina is a postdoctoral research fellow in Professor Arlt’s group. Her research aims to delineate steroid metabolic pathways in human tissues and to understand the role of steroid metabolism for metabolic disease. Additionally, she develops mass spectrometry-based methods to translate new findings on steroid biosynthesis and metabolism into clinical applications.

Awarded Early Career Grant in 2018 from the Society of Endocrinology

Attained a Summer Studentship 2018 grant from the Society for Endocrinology

Awarded Practical Skills grant 2018 from the Society for Endocrinology

 SfE logo as JPEG


Dr. rer. nat. (PhD equivalent), Saarland University, 2016

Diploma in Human and Molecular Biology, Saarland University, 2013


Lina has done her PhD at the Institute of Biochemistry at Saarland University (Germany) working on adrenal steroidogenic cytochromes P450 and their drug-metabolising potential. Since completing her PhD in 2016, she is working as a postdoctoral research fellow with Professor Arlt and the Steroid Metabolome Analysis Core at the University of Birmingham.


Lina’s research aims to understand the metabolism of natural and synthetic steroid hormones and the role of steroid metabolism in the regulation of metabolic health. This work focusses on key metabolic tissues like the adipose and the liver with a special interest in the metabolism of androgens and their role for the development of metabolic dysfunction in women with polycystic ovary syndrome.

Lina develops liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry and ultraperformance convergence chromatography tandem mass spectrometry methods for steroid profiling in cell and tissue samples and biological fluids. One particular interest is the use of saliva for steroid measurements in the clinical setting. 

Besides natural steroids, Lina investigates the metabolism of synthetic steroidal drugs to identify new metabolites, characterise their bioactivity and support future structure-function guided drug design.


Schiffer L, Adaway JE, Baranowski ES, Arlt W and Keevil BG (2018) A novel high-throughput assay for the measurement of salivary progesterone by liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. Ann Clin Biochem 1:4563218780904.

Schiffer L, Arlt W, Storbeck KH (2018) Intracrine androgen biosynthesis, metabolism and action revisited. Mol Cell Endocrinol 15;465:4-26.

Schiffer L, Kempegowda P, Arlt W, O'Reilly MW (2017) MECHANISMS IN ENDOCRINOLOGY: The sexually dimorphic role of androgens in human metabolic disease. Eur J Endocrinol 177(3):R125-R143.

Neunzig J, Milhim M, Schiffer L, Khatri Y, Zapp J, Sánchez-Guijo A, Hartmann MF, Wudy SA, Bernhardt R (2017) The steroid metabolite 16(β)-OH-androstenedione generated by CYP21A2 serves as a substrate for CYP19A1. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol 167:182-191.

Schiffer L, Müller AR, Hobler A, Brixius-Anderko S, Zapp J, Hannemann F, Bernhardt R (2016) Biotransformation of the mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists spironolactone and canrenone by human CYP11B1 and CYP11B2: Characterization of the products and their influence on mineralocorticoid receptor transactivation. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol 163:68-76. 

Schiffer L, Brixius-Anderko S, Hannemann F, Zapp J, Neunzig J, Thevis M, Bernhardt R (2016) Metabolism of Oral Turinabol by Human Steroid Hormone-Synthesizing Cytochrome P450 Enzymes. Drug Metab Dispos 44(2):227-37. 

Brixius-Anderko S, Schiffer L, Hannemann F, Janocha B, Bernhardt R (2015) A CYP21A2 based whole-cell system in Escherichia coli for the biotechnological production of premedrol. Microb Cell Fact 15;14:135. 

Schiffer L, Anderko S, Hobler A, Hannemann F, Kagawa N, Bernhardt R (2015) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4347555/A recombinant CYP11B1 dependent Escherichia coli biocatalyst for selective cortisol production and optimization towards a preparative scale. Microb Cell Fact 25;14:25.

Schiffer L, Anderko S, Hannemann F, Eiden-Plach A, Bernhardt R (2015) The CYP11B subfamily. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol 151:38-51.

For a full list of Dr Schiffer's publications

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