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Klaudia Schossleitner
Dipl.-Ing. Klaudia Schossleitner, PhDGroup leader

Department of Dermatology
Position: Research Associate (Postdoc)

T +43 1 40400 - 73786

Further Information


Edema; Endothelial Cells; Intercellular Junctions; Permeability; Tight Junctions; Vascular Diseases

Research group(s)

  • Vascular Barrier
    Head: Klaudia Schossleitner
    Research Area: Our skin is an important barrier to pathogens, radiation, chemical or physical damage. To maintain this barrier function, as well as for immune surveillance, thermoregulation and wound healing activities, the skin needs a densely knit network of vessels that controls the flow of blood and lymph. The exchange of fluid, molecules and cells between blood and surrounding tissue is tightly controlled. We investigate blood vessels in the skin and search for ways to support vascular function in disease

Research interests

 Vascular barrier function is critical for the maintenance of blood flow and tissue homeostasis. In endothelial and epithelial cells the tight junctional complex safeguards this barrier. It comprises transmembrane components, such as claudins, occludin and junctional adhesion molecules (JAMs), as well as a dense plaque of cytosolic tight junction proteins. One of these adaptor molecules is cingulin, which links the tight junction complex to the actin cytoskeleton. For the first time, we have shown that this adapter protein is part of the endothelial tight junction complex. We have demonstrated that it regulates claudin-5 mRNA and protein levels and that it plays a role in regulating endothelial permeability. Building on this knowledge we strive to develop a new treatment strategy against vascular leak syndromes.

Techniques, methods & infrastructure

Qualitative and quantitative methods in protein biochemistry and molecular biology, cell and tissue culture, transfection of cells, expression and purification of recombinant proteins, sub cellular fractionation and analysis of subcellular fractions, flow cytometry, histology and immuno-histochemistry, models for acute lung injury, live monitoring of vascular permeability in vitro (TEER, Transwell assays) and in vivo (vascular probes for IVIS) Due to our excellent location within the Anna-Spiegel-Forschungsgebäude, we have easy access to the wide spectrum offered by the core facilities.

Selected publications

  1. Mussbacher, M. et al. (2022) ‘More than Just a Monolayer: the Multifaceted Role of Endothelial Cells in the Pathophysiology of Atherosclerosis’, Current Atherosclerosis Reports, 24(6), pp. 483–492. Available at:
  2. Holzner, S. et al. (2021) ‘Phosphorylated cingulin localises GEF-H1 at tight junctions to protect vascular barriers in blood endothelial cells’, Journal of Cell Science, 134(17). Available at:
  3. Zhuravleva, K. et al. (2020) ‘The tight junction protein cingulin regulates the vascular response to burn injury in a mouse model’, Microvascular Research, 132, p. 104067. Available at:
  4. Schossleitner, K. et al. (2018) ‘Differences in biocompatibility of microneedles from cyclic olefin polymers with human endothelial and epithelial skin cells’, Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A, 107(3), pp. 505–512. Available at:
  5. Schossleitner, K. et al. (2015) ‘A Peptide to Reduce Pulmonary Edema in a Rat Model of Lung Transplantation’, PLOS ONE. Edited by H.K. Eltzschig, 10(11), p. e0142115. Available at: