Team IEB

Completed Projects · Immunology

Team IEB

Intestinal Epithelial Barrier in Autoimmune Diseases

The intestinal epithelium provides an essential selective barrier that permits passage of water, ions and nutrients, while limiting contact with harmful environmental toxins and preventing microbial contamination of interstitial tissues. Loss of intestinal barrier function is correlated with several autoimmune diseases. The main objective of the IEB group is to understand the molecular mechanisms of the interactions between intestinal epithelial barrier and immune cells in autoimmune diseases, in particular the interactions between dendritic cells and intestinal enterocytes. To this end, studies will involve use of conventional and high-throughput metagenomics, generation of intestinal organoids from murine and human subjects, isolation of immune cells and establishing a 3 dimensional In-vitro co-culture model to observe the intestinal epithelial barrier-immune cells interactions. Our final goal is to identify novel biomarkers and develop new therapeutic targets for intestinal barrier loss and autoimmune diseases to improve patient outcomes.


  1. Hensel IV, Éliás S, Steinhauer M, Stoll B, Benfatto S, Merkt W, Krienke S, Lorenz HM, Haas J, Wildemann B, Resnik-Docampo M (2024):
    SLE serum induces altered goblet cell differentiation and leakiness in human intestinal organoids.
    EMBO Molecular Medicine
The research of this team is kindly sponsored by Merck