Stay up to date with FSP-D news by following us on twitter: @DKFZImmunology


We congratulate Dr. Lukas Bunse, who received the Swiss Bridge Award (250.000 CHF) to develop immunotherapies for brain cancer patients.

More information (in German only) can be found here:

Dr. Rajagopal Murugan received the Werner-Müller-Award (2000 €) - Congratulations!

The price was awarded for Dr. Murugans work on immune responses to Plasmodium falciparum (causative agent of malaria) antigens. 

Details can be found under (in German only)


in Murugan, Buchauer et al., Science Immunology 2018 as well was Scally, Murugan et al., Journal of Experimental Medicine 2018.

Congratulations to Dr. Theresa Bunse, who received the Herbert-Fischer-Award for Neuroimmunologie (1.500 €).
The price was awarded for Dr. Bunses research about how brain tumors are recognized by the immune system. She could show that a mutation in the IDH1 protein represents a promising therapeutic target for glioblastoma.

More information can be found under (in German only) and

in Schumacher, Bunse et al., Nature 2014 and Bunse, Pusch, Bunse et al., Nature Medicine 2018.



Starting in the fall of 2019, we are initiating the IMMUNOLOGY@DKFZ seminar series that will bring you exciting science from within the department as well as from external speakers.


Next Seminar:

30.01.2020 at 3.30 pm; location: DKFZ main building 6th floor seminar room (H2.06.073)

Christian Busse (B cell immunology) will speak about "iReceptor plus: Federated Infrastructure for AIRR-seq Data"


Upcoming Seminars:

27.02.2020 - Graduating FSP-D PhD students:

Kevin Bode: Dectin-1 binding to annexins on apoptotic cells induces peripheral immune tolerance via NADPH oxidase-2


26.03.2020 - Prof. Dietmar Zehn, TU München; Title t.b.a.


28.11.2019, Dr. Chong Sun (new FSP-D PI)

"Using functional genetics to understand immune regulation in cancer"


31.10.2019 - Prof. Thomas Höfer (Division of Theoretical Systems Biology, Bioquant) 

"Panta rhei: Cellular flows in immune responses, hematopoiesis and leukemia"



The Irving Symposium represents an excellent opportunity to advance your career in cancer immunology under the mentorship of highly accomplished PIs from the field.

The symposium is organized by Bob Schreiber, Shannon Turley and Nir Hacohen and will take place from 20-24th of July 2020, in Gloucester, MA.

See for more details.

Application deadline: 15.02.2020!


The FSP-D NEW YEARS PARTY will take place on the 24th of January 2020.

Please sign up by December 13th, 2019. More information will follow.


Every year the DGfi announces multiple awards for junior researches at different levels and in various areas of immunology. More information can be found at and on the poster linked below.

Deadline: 31th of January 2020

Immunoretreat 2019 - Three days of exciting immunology on beautiful Rothenfels Castle

From 13-15 of May 2019, FSD scientists gathered at the Castle of Rothenfels for our annual retreat.

Many thanks to Thorsten Feyerabend for the fantastic organization!

© T. Feyerabend



Congratulations to Dr. Sicong Ma, who defended his PhD thesis entitled "Metabolic synchronization of effector and regulatory T cell responses" in October 2019!

Thesis Abstract: Our study revealed that SPTLC2 underpins the adaptive protective immunity by translating extracellular stimuli into intracellular anabolic signals and reducing the cellular stress in maintaining metabolic reprogramming sustainability. In addition, SPTLC2 is required to maintain the suppressive activity of Treg cells to keep the immune tolerance and restrict the anti-tumor responses. Collectively, we address that the SPTLC2-mediated sphingolipid de novo synthetic pathway synchronizes metabolic reprogramming and the immune reaction of regulatory and effector T cells in infection and cancer.

On the 10th of September 2019, Stefanie Dünnbier defended her doctoral thesis entitled "The role of Thioredoxin-interacting protein in T cell receptor signalling".

Abstract: T cell receptor (TCR) engagement and subsequent signalling are a prerequisite to initiate a T cell immune response. This study examined the role of Thioredoxin-interacting protein (TXNIP) in TCR signalling and shows that TXNIP acts as transcriptional inhibitor. Hence, TXNIP might be considered as a potential therapeutic target to shape T cell responses e.g. in autoimmune or tumour diseases.

Congratulations on this excellent work!


On the 10th of Mai 2019, Csilla Kongsaysak-Lengyel defended her PhD. The title of her thesis is "Importance of Notch1 PEST domain mutations in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia".

Abstract: My PhD work was focusing on the characteristic frameshift mutations of the Notch1 PEST domain, leading to the expression of a truncated, hyperactive Notch1 protein. These mutations are found with very high frequencies in human T-ALL, and also in our spontaneous T-ALL mouse model. To investigate the importance of such frameshift mutations in leukemia pathogenesis, we developed a modified Notch1 allele, where frameshift mutations are non-functional. Interestingly, mice bearing such a modified Notch1 allele overcome frameshift disability by specifically acquiring direct STOP mutations leading to a truncated PEST domain. Overall, our results reveal an enormous selection pressure for mutations leading to a hyperactive Notch signaling in T-ALL pathogenesis.

Congratulations Dr. Kongsaysak-Lengyel!

On the 29th of April 2019, Ann-Kathrin Fanti defended her PhD thesis entitled "Fate Mapping of Hematopoietic Stem Cell Activity under Challenges".

Abstract: In my PhD project I investigated the regulation of the hematopoietic system, and in particular HSC, under stress conditions. To enable HSC fate mapping, I employed a Cre knock-in reporter mouse and performed time-resolved analysis of hematopoietic compartment sizes and label propagation. Our findings show that the activation of HSC, in terms of differentiation, depends strongly on the nature of the challenge, giving important insights on the hematopoietic response to severe insults such as sepsis and irradiation.

Congratulations on this great work!


Bode K, Bujupi F, Link C, Hein T, Zimmermann S, Peiris D, Jaquet V, Lepenies B, Weyd H and Krammer PH

Dectin-1 binding to annexins on apoptotic cells induces peripheral immune tolerance via NADPH oxidase-2

Cell Reports. In press (Dec 2019).

Buchauer L, Wardemann H

Calculating germinal centre reactions

Current Opinion in Systems Biology (Dec 2019)

Dorshkind K, Höfer T, Montecino-Rodriguez E, Pioli PD, Rodewald HR

Do haematopoietic stem cells age?

Nature Reviews Immunology (Nov 2019); PMID 31740804

Julien JP, Wardemann H.
Antibodies against Plasmodium falciparum malaria at the molecular level
Nature Reviews Immunology (Aug. 2019); PMID 31462718

Sonner JK, Keil M, Falk-Paulsen M, Mishra N, Rehman A, Kramer M, Deumelandt K, Röwe J, Sanghvi K, Wolf L, von Landenberg A, Wolff H, Bharti R, Oezen I, Lanz TV, Wanke F, Tang Y, Brandao I, Mohapatra SR, Epping L, Grill A, Röth R, Niesler B, Meuth SG, Opitz CA, Okun JG, Reinhardt C, Kurschus FC, Wick W, Bode HB, Rosenstiel P, Platten M
Dietary Tryptophan links encephalogenicity of autoreactive T cells with gut microbial ecology
Nature Communications (Oct 2019); PMID: 31653831

Do you have a new publication that you would like others to know about? Please contact us at

to top