In 1854 he earned his medical doctorate, and later (1860) became an associate professor at the University of Göttingen. In 1892 he was appointed head of the Anatomical Institute Laboratory in Berlin.
Krause is known for the discovery and description of mechanoreceptors that were to become known as "Krause's corpuscles", sometimes referred to as "Krause's end-bulbs". His name is also associated with:
Krause is also remembered for pioneer research in the field of embryology. Among his better known students at Göttingen was bacteriologistRobert Koch (1843-1910). Krause is credited with the publication of over 100 medical articles.