Optimisation of Conventional and Innovative Transplants
In the past years survival of transplanted cells and organs had been considerably improved by technical advances, new and better immunosuppressants and by improved anti-infectious therapies. Therefore, the scope of basic science and clinical therapies in transplantation medicine has also shifted: The overall goal being the induction of tissue-specific tolerance with the preservation of the general immunocompetence against infection (including CMV infection) and tumour development. In solid organ transplantation chronic graft dysfunction represents a major problem. This is not just mediated by immunological mechanisms, but is also due to infection, recurrence of pre-transplant disease and mesenchymal remodelling. In hematopoetic stem cell transplantation the main goal is the improvement of graft versus leukaemia reaction without causing graft versus host disease.
Because of the lack of donor organs and because of enhanced possibilities in molecular biology, transplantation research is also focussing on new cellular therapies, conditioned transplants and gene modifications. The Collaborative Research Centre tries to solve some of these problems. It consists of the following three projects areas:
(1) immunity and tolerance after hematopoetic stem cell transplantation,
(2) determinants of long-term survival of solid organ transplantation,
(3) new concepts of cellular and molecular transplantation medicine.
The three project areas are showing a close scientific and methodological collaboration. They are following the synergistic goal of improving the long-term transplant function and to develop new therapies. The conversion of research results into clinical medicine is facilitated by the fact that many members of the Collaborative Research Centre are active in the clinical transplant programmes of the Medizinische Hochschule Hannover. The research programme is investigating various aspects of immune function and induction of tolerance in animal models and in clinical samples.
Medizinische Hochschule Hannover