Susanne Vrtala, PhD

vrtalaAssoc. Prof. at the Department of Pathophysiology and Allergy Research

Education:
MSc: University of Vienna, Austria
PhD: University of Vienna, Austria

Research Interests:
• Molecular characterization of house dust mite allergens
• Development of new vaccines based on recombinant house dust mite allergens

Biography:
Susanne Vrtala is Associate Professor at the Department of Pathophysiology and Allergy Research and Director of the Christian Doppler Laboratory for the development of allergen chips at the Medical University of Vienna.  She obtained her M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Vienna, Austria. Prof. Vrtala is author on 117 publications in the field of allergy research. Her efforts led to the identification of cDNAs coding for new allergens from grasses and house dust mites and the production and characterization of recombinant allergens for new diagnostic concepts. Additionally, she developed allergy vaccines based on recombinant allergens for improved immunotherapy. Her work laid the basis to the first immunotherapy trial in allergic humans worldwide with hypoallergenic allergen derivatives. Currently, she works at the development of a house dust mite vaccine by biotechnological techniques to improve the immunotherapy of house dust mite allergic patients. For her research, Prof. Vrtala obtained several international research awards like the Allergopharma Award and the PhARF award from Phadia.

Research projects:
1) Biological role and intrinsic properties of HDM allergens possibly contributing to allergenicity
2) Altered peptide ligands from major HDM allergens for immunomodulation