Clinical Immunology; Immunological immaturity of the neonate; Inborn Deficiencies of the Immune System; Innate Immunity; Pediatric vaccinology
The interest of my research focuses on immunological dysfunction (mainly early life & childhood, moreover youth, adulthood & ageing).
Infection control, being one of the important challenges of immunity, is managed by mechanisms of the innate and the adaptive immune system. At time of birth, a number of immunological mechanisms are known to be immature– especially if birth occurs prematurely before gestation was completed. Immunological immaturity may result in severe infection and life-long sequelae. Gaining of immunological memory during youth and loss of immunological memory during ageing impacts infection control, respectively.
Moreover, genetic aberrations – inborn errors of the immune system, ‘primary immunodeficiencies’ – may result in immunological dysfunction and a significant lack of infection control, the lack of tumorsurveillance thus malignancy, or immunodysregulation possibly presenting with autoimmunity or allergy.
Our experimental work delineates mechanisms of immunological immaturity and identifies primary immunodeficiencies in humans, addressing prevention or treatment of immunological dysfunction in these individuals.
For more information visit https://www.meduniwien.ac.at/hp/phd-immunologie/research-laboratories/elisabeth-foerster-waldl-md/ or http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed : forster-waldl