Better therapies against blood cancer, Trojan Horses and childhood illnesses – the GC-I³ Papers of the Year 2018


In 2018 the GC-I³ has chosen the “Papers of the Year” for the third time. The jury picked out the best three papers among the vast number of submissions, all members of the GC-I³ were then called to pick out the order of the three winners in a secret poll.

TPreisverleihung Bärbel Edelmann durch Prof. Fischerhe first price went to Dr. Bärbel Edelmann-Stephan (PostDoc in the Department of Hematology and Oncology) for her work „JAK2-V617F promotes venous thrombosis through β1/β2 integrin activation“. It was published in the “Journal of Clinical Investigation” and graced the front page of the October 2018 issue. The results of her studies show a new, innovative way of therapy for patients with chronic myeloproliferative Neoplasia (CMN). The most common complication with conventional treatment of CMN is thrombosis. Edelmann and coworkers have researched a therapy, where blocking antibodies against β1 und β2 Integrins are used in combination with conventional CMN medications, which reduces the risk of venous thrombosis and therefore negative side effects. Prof. Thomas Fischer accepted the prize in behalf of Dr. Edelmann-Stephan.

The second price was awarded to Jan Dudeck (Scientist at the Institute of Molecular and Clinical Immunology). His submitted paper Preisverleihung Jan Dudeck„Engulfment of mast cell secretory granules on skin inflammation boosts dendritic cell migration and priming efficiency” was published in the “Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology”. Mast cells are peripheral immune cells that play an important role for immune reactions. More than 90 years ago it was discovered, that mast cells rapidly release inflammatory mediators from granules when they are activated. The inflammatory mediators are important for immune responses, but to date it is not certain, how the granules themselves affect the immune reaction after that. Dudeck et al. now present a method to stain mast cell granules in vivo and prove that they stay in the extracellular matrix for several days. Subsequently, dendritic cells (DCs) accumulate at the granules, take them up and transport them to the lymph nodes. Furthermore the granules influence the DCs after they have taken them up like the proverbial Trojan Horse and thereby boost antigen presentation and T cell responses.

The third pPreisverleihung Katrin Vogelrice went to Dr. Katrin Vogel (PostDoc at the Department of Experimental Pediatrics and Neonatology) for her paper „Developmental induction of human T-cell responses against Candida albicans and Aspergillus fumigatus“. She and her team researched the T cell response of newborns and infants against antigens of two different fungi. In the first years of life children present a T cell pool of 20 different TCR-Vβ-families. With rising age this pool shrinks exponentially. Also cytokine expression after contact with fungal antigens shows profound differences between children and adults. While children don’t show bias for an expression of IL-4, a tendency to IL-17 production is evident. Only T cells of newborns show an immediate and simultaneous expression of more than one transcription factor, when confronted with fungal antigens. Vogel et al. therefore prove that T cells of newborns are predetermined to react to fungal pathogens with high plasticity. Her results are valuable for understanding the interaction between pathogens and T cells and will contribute to developing new treatments.

Like last year the three winners are happy to accept their prizes of 1000, 500 and 250 Euro. The ceremonial awarding took place on the 9th of May 2019 during the yearly general meeting of all GC-I³ members. Also in 2019 the GC-I³ will award a winner again, so all of its scientists are welcome to submit their “Paper of the Year 2019”.

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