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LIT scientist Sebastian Bittner receives the Biopark Innovation Prize 2022

Article Details

  • Date Published

    November 28, 2022

Petra Homeier (left) and Sebastian Bittner (center) accept the Biopark Award 2022.

LIT scientist Doctor Sebastian Bittner receives the Biopark Innovation Prize 2022 for his research in the field of cell therapy for the treatment of autoimmune diseases.

The term ‘autoimmunity’ describes an organism’s misguided immune reaction against its own body. This erroneous reaction is the consequence of the immune system’s lack of tolerance towards endogenous structures. Some of the most important control entities in this process are regulatory T cells (Tregs). Doctor Bittner developed a new type of synthetic biosensor, so-called artificial immune receptors (AIRs), with the help of which Treg cells can be reprogrammed into intelligent ‘smart’ Tregs. The new sensors allow the Treg cells to detect inflamed tissue in their environment and to apply their regenerative and protective benefits there. In a preclinical model, he was able to show the protective effect of these modified Treg cells in preventing a systemic and potentially fatal inflammatory reaction following allogeneic stem cell transplantation.

Read more about the project in PNAS

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