Allergy and Hypersensitivity
The development of strategies for diagnosing, treating and preventing hypersensitivity reactions of the immune system will be crucial for the eradication of many severe hypersensitivity diseases, including IgE-mediated allergies and numerous chronic and disabling autoimmune diseases. The identification of signaling pathways determining T-cell differentiation and activity is of pivotal importance to understand immune hypersensitivity. The projects of this area will study the molecular features of antigens eliciting hypersensitivity reactions, how the mode of antigen exposure, host and environmental conditions influence the development of exaggerated immune responses. Based on these investigations we will try to develop novel strategies for the diagnosis, treatment and prophylaxis of hypersensitivity diseases. At this stage models of IgE-mediated allergy to food and respiratory antigens will be investigated in human and murine models.