Junior Research Groups

Medicine 3

Head of Department:
Prof. Dr. med. univ. Georg Schett

Junior Research groups


Dr. rer. nat. Bettina Grötsch


Verena Stallfort
Francoise Welfring
Stefan Hofmann


Influence of immune regulation and inflammation on bone homeostasis
Our group is currently analyzing how changes in B cell differentiation and activation with B cell specific deletion of Fra1 or Fra2 affects bone homeostasis. Furthermore, we are studying the role of innate C type lectin receptors on inflammatory bone loss. The link between infections and inflammatory bone loss is incompletely understood. Our lab is analyzing the molecular mechanisms by which lectin receptors could link bacterial infections to bone loss. The results obtained from these studies will allow a better identification of the mechanisms regulating the interplay of the immune system and bone. This will provide a useful approach identifying new treatment strategies for osteoporosis and rheumatoid arthritis.

PD Dr. med. habil. Dr. rer. nat. Luis Munoz


Silke Winkler
Xiaomei Shan

Neutrophil biology and immune regulation

Neutrophils are the most abundant immune cell type in the circulation; they migrate to injured tissues and can influence the subsequent immune responses. In systemic lupus erythematosus nuclear remnants are detoured by autoantibodies toward neutrophils exacerbating local and systemic inflammation. Under certain conditions neutrophils expel its own DNA decorated with granular proteins and modified histones in form of sticky neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs). These structures act as repositories for modified autoantigens and are endowed with intrinsic immunoregulatory mechanisms that offer opportunities for novel therapeutic interventions.

Dr. rer. nat. Christine Schauer