Birgit Sawitzki

Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Germany

Birgit Sawitzki is the Head, and Professor since 2009, of Transplantation Tolerance at the Charité. The major interest of his group is induction of transplantation tolerance in experimental models as well as its clinical application. They investigated the generation and function of alloantigen-specific regulatory T cells and have established an anti-CD4 mAb-based protocol for the generation of alloantigen-specific regulatory T cells (EJI 2008). They showed that allo-specific Tregs develop independently of the thymus (JI 2004) and act by transiently producing interferon gamma (JEM 2005). His group developed anti-CD4 mAb-based protocols of transplant tolerance induction, characterized anti-CD4 mAb-based control of cytokine production (JASN 2004), and identified tolerance-associated gene expression profile (AJT 2007) and the mode of action of tolerance-associated gene 1 (JI 2009). Latently, they have discovered new features of anti-inflammatory dendritic cells and their control of TNF-mediated maturation by hybrid-type N-glycans (JI 2011). They established the diagnostics for the early prediction of psoriasis patients responding to immunomodulatory therapies (JI 2009) and identified signatures characterizing tolerant transplant patients (JCI 2010). From 2004 to 2009, Sawitzki did his research on transplantation tolerance and immune monitoring at Institute of Medical Immunology, Charité Berlin. In 2004-2007, he received the Rahel Hirsch Fellowship from Charité Berlin, in 2001-2003, did research on the role of regulatory T cells in transplantation (Oxford, UK, Wellcome Trust Fellowship), in 1995-1999, did his Ph.D. thesis on anti-CD4 mAb-based control of gene expression in graft infiltrating cells (Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin), in 1989-1994, studied biochemistry at the Humboldt University of Berlin, and, in 1999, completed his Ph.D. degree. Since 2010, Sawitzki serves as a Member of the Editorial Board of Transplant Immunology.

Biography Updated on 26 June 2011

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