Research interests


Our research group within the L.E.I.C.A laboratory focusses primarily on protection of heart, blood vessels  (endothelium) and other organs against temporary periods of no oxygen. No oxygen conditions occur frequently in several clinical conditions (surgery, cardiac by-pass operations, shock, stroke, transplantation) and during an acute heart attack. This research therefore has a high clinical and society relevance: it can lead to improvements in clinical care and in the fight against cardiovascular diseases.

Main research focus is

Improving our understanding of underlying mechanisms of different organ protection strategies:

  • Currently we focus on the effects of the sodium glucose hydrogen exchange inhibitors like Empagliflozin on the hart and endothelium and whether these can offer protection in various damaging models. In this context different proteins are in the focus of our investigations: like Caveolins, Hexokinase II and AMPK, eNOS and others.


  • Another focus over the last years is ischemic conditioning, remote ischemic preconditioning, and conditioning with special anaesthetic agents as clinically-applicable interventions to protect the organ/tissue against period of no oxygen. As the translation of these intervention has broadly failed we seeks to find more clinically relevant intervention/intervention combination within our in vitro and in vivo models.

  • Organ protection by the noble gas (helium) is observed in experimental models and humans and it might be a perfect alternative as an organprotective intervention. In this project we focus on the potential of helium to affect extracellular vesicles that might be enriched in Cavelolin. In a translational approach using volunteer blood on endothelial cells we aim to find out if helium can itself induce remote conditioning.



Organ protection, molecular mechanisms "conditioning", inflammation, endothelial research

ID: 59350