Hepatitis B: Liver cells switch off the immune response (10.07.2024)

The team of Prof. Percy Knolle and collaborators have identified that in chronic hepatitis B infections the liver sinusoidal endothelial cells start a “sleep timer” that switches off virus-specific CD8 T cell activation, thus preventing viral clearance. Targeting this mechanism could be a starting point for immunotherapies that allow for viral clearance.

The TUM press release can be found here, and the orignial paper here.


Award of the German Liver Foundation 2024 (29.06.2024)

Dr. Carl-Philipp Hackstein was awarded the “Award of the German Liver Foundation 2024” by the German Liver Foundation together with Dr. Jaspar Spitzer (University of Bonn) for their recent paper in the Journal of Hepatology.

This work, conducted in the group of Prof. Dr Zeinab Abdullah (Univeristy of Bonn), explored the impact chronic liver disease on adpative immunity and unraveld the roles of IFN I and IL-10-signalling in anti-viral T cells in this context.


How cancers impair tumour-infiltrating CD8+ T cells (24.04.2024)

In two back-to-back studies published in Nature, Jan Böttcher and his team, together with colleagues from LMU Munich and the Agora Cancer Center in Lausanne, report how tumour-derived PGE2 impairs anti-cancer immunity by tumour-infiltrating T cells & show how this mechanism can be disabled to improve the efficacy of cancer immunotherapy.

 The press release from TUM can be found here. Both papers were also featured in the weekly disgest of the Accelerating Cancer Immunotherapy Research (AICR) organisation. 


TRR 353 "Regulation of Cell Death Decisions" funded by the DFG (19.05.2023)

The CRC/Transregio Regulation of Cell Death Decisions  was one of eleven newly funded Collaborative Research Centres funded by the DFG. Both Monica Yabal and Dirk Wohlleber are project leaders in this new initiative that focuses on mechanistic processes involved in the decision as to whether a cell lives or dies. The CRC is headed by Professor Dr. Thomas Brunner (University of Konstanz) and includes groups from the University of Freiburg and Technical University of Munich (TUM). 

The official press release from the DFG is here.  Open positions within the research consortium can be found on on the TRR 553 website.


Restoration of immune defense in liver disease (21.03.2023)

Dr. Carl-Philipp Hackstein with the group of Dr. Zeinab Abdullah at the University of Bonn found a link between chronic liver disease and high susceptibility to viral infections. The results of the study are now published in the Journal of Hepatology.

The link to the press release from the University of Bonn.


NAGK and NOD2 (24.08.2022)

As part of a collaborative effort, with the team of Prof. Veit Hornung (LMU), the group of Monica Yabal could contribute to work identifying a link between amino sugar metabolism and innate immunity to bacterial cell walls, via the innate immune NOD2 signaling pathway: Che Stafford et. al., (2023).

The press release from the LMU: Der letzte Schliff für die Bakterienabwehr.


XIAP-deficiency and IBD (01.02.2022)

 The team of Dr Monica Yabal successfully linked the absence of the gene XIAP to TNF-mediated cell-death of innate immune cell subsets and epithelial Paneth cells as the cause of chronic intestinal inflamation: Wahida, Müller et al:

Press release: XIAP-deficiency and inflammatory bowel disease.


Young Investigators Award Liver Cancer (09.2021)

Dr. Michael Dudek was awarded the "Young Investigators Award Liver Cancer 2021" by the German Society for Gastroenterology, Digestive and Metabolic Diseases (DGVS). He was also awarded the German Liver Foundation Prize for an outstanding publication in the field of hepatology. Both awards were based on his publication in Nature, describing auto-aggressive T-cells in NASH.


Cause found for higher sex-specific risk of mortality (10/04/2021)

The research team led by Prof. Achim Krüger identified the protein TIMP1 as a factor, which could explain this sex-specific difference and also improve the risk-diagnostics for the clinical course of the disease. The work was funded by the Wilhelm Sander Foundation, among other sources.

Link to the paper is here.  The TUM press release is here.


How activated T cells destroy the liver (24.03.2021)

 The team of Prof Percy Knolle successfully linked the destruction of  liver tissue through auto-aggressive immune cells and show that this  differs from familiar auto-immune disorders, in which immune system cells specifically attack certain cells in the body. These tissue-destroying auto-aggressive T cells may also play a role in auto-immune pathologies that has yet to be discovered.

The link the paper is here. And the TUM press release is here.