The LEO Foundation Skin Immunology Research Center (SIC) has been granted one of 11 of this year’s competitive BRIDGE – Translational Excellence Programme Fellowships from the Novo Nordisk Foundation.
The new BRIDGE fellow at SIC is PhD Mandy Menzel. Her mentor team consists of Professor and Acting Executive Director of SIC, Charlotte Menné Bonefeld, and Clinicial Professor at Bispebjerg and Herlev Hospital, Celeste Porsbjerg.
Mandy Menzel will study allergy as a potential cause of impaired immunity to bacterial infections in patients suffering from asthma and atopic dermatitis.
The postdoctoral BRIDGE fellowships in translational medicine are offered to selected researchers working on translational research projects at the University of Copenhagen.
Fellows apply new discoveries and technologies from biomedical research to the clinical environment or to the life science industry.
Impact of immunotherapy on atopic diseases
The fellowship at SIC will investigate scientific observations of patients with severe asthma who are at a higher risk of being prescribed antibiotics for respiratory infections caused by bacteria. Moreover, it has been observed that these patients seem to benefit from allergic immunotherapy, leading to fewer infections and a reduced need for antibiotic treatment. But researchers do not yet know which mechanisms of immunotherapy lead to better response towards bacteria.
“We now want to unravel molecular and immunological mechanisms that link atopy to susceptibility to bacterial infection. The aim is that our findings can be used for patient stratification to identify patient groups particularly at risk of contracting infections and to identify molecular targets for novel treatment approaches for atopic diseases,” says the new BRIDGE fellow Mandy Menzel.