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The study of human immune/blood cells and the analysis of the data obtained or to be obtained from them have become an important tool in medical research. To understand the mechanisms by which immune cells cure tumors, autoimmune diseases and transplant rejection, it is important to learn more about the underlying biological processes.

If you are considering supporting immunological research at the Leibniz Institute for Immunotherapy (LIT) with a cell donation (blood or tissue) or if you have already donated, you can find out here which research projects will benefit from your donation or have benefited in the past. You will also find information about the procedures and measures to protect your personal data.


What requirements must research projects fulfill in order to benefit from your donation?

The cells or tissue and data you provide will be used exclusively for immune cell research. By studying the function and interactions of the various immune cells and their messenger substances, we gain knowledge that we use to develop modern drugs (e.g. cell therapeutics) against cancer and autoimmune diseases and to treat transplant rejection.

As new questions are constantly arising in research from current findings, we ask our donors for permission to use their samples and data for research projects that cannot yet be foreseen.

There are basically two conditions for the use of biomaterials (cells and tissue) and data for a specific biomedical research project of a working group at the LIT:

  1. The research project has been evaluated by an ethics committee and has not been deemed unethical.
  2. The purpose of the research project is to study immune/blood cells in order to better understand their development and functions in the healthy body or in diseases or to develop therapies that prevent a malfunction of certain blood cells (e.g. in tumor diseases) or strengthen the immune system so that the body can better fight diseases.

Which research projects benefit from your donations?

Listed below are the current or completed research projects that will benefit from your cell/tissue donations. For each project, the responsible contact person, a brief, generally understandable description of the research project, a list of data protection-relevant information, the title and reference number of the associated ethics opinions and collaborations with other institutions are listed. If you have any questions about the research projects, please contact the named project leaders at any time.

01 | Function of the immune system in the blood

Get to know our team and find out more about our pioneering research. Visit our Research Division Immunology here!

Prof. Markus Feuerer
Deputy Scientific Director LIT
Head of Research Division | Immunology

Tel: +49 941 944–38121



02 | Mechanisms of immune cell development and function

Please find a brief description of the research project here – open PDF. Get to know our team and find out more about our pioneering research. Visit our Research Group Epigenetic Immuno-oncology here!

Dr. Christian Schmidl
Head of Research Group | Epigenetic Immuno-oncology

Tel: +49 941 944–18176



03 | New insights into immune cell function in the anti-tumor response of T cell receptor (TCR) or chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)

Please find a brief description of the research project here – open PDF. Get to know our team and find out more about our pioneering research. Visit our Research Division Genetic Immunotherapy here!

Prof. Hinrich Abken
Head of Research Division | Genetic Immunotherapy

Tel: +49 941 944–38111


How do we protect your data?

Your immune/blood cells and data are stored at the LIT under standardized quality and security conditions for a maximum period of 30 years and protected against unauthorized access according to the state of the art.

All data that directly identifies you, including personal data (name, date of birth, address, etc.), will be replaced by a code (pseudonymized) immediately after the blood cells have been collected in the Transfusion Medicine Department at the University Hospital Regensburg. Only in this form are the cells and data made available for research purposes.

The personal data remain in the Transfusion Medicine Department at the University Hospital Regensburg and are stored there separately from the biomaterials and medical data. The samples and data can therefore not be assigned to your person without the cooperation of this institution. Your personal data will not be passed on to researchers or other unauthorized third parties such as insurance companies or employers.

Who has access to your immune or blood cells?

Local research groups will initially benefit from your donation. Under certain circumstances, however, researchers from other institutions may also have access to your blood cells. In the information on the research projects, we name the research institutions outside the LIT to which data or samples are to be or have been transferred.

How is research data published and how is your anonymity guaranteed?

Scientific data must be made public. However, your data must still be protected. For more information, follow this link.


How can you withdraw your consent and what other rights do you have?

You can withdraw your consent to the use of your biomaterials and data at any time without giving reasons and without any adverse consequences for you. To do so, follow this link.


Who should I contact if I would like to donate blood for research?

If you are interested, you can find contact details and directions here on the Regensburg University Hospital website.