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Josephine Baunvig Aagaard

PhD Student

Josephine Baunvig Aagaard


Project title: Nanobody-based inhibitors of allergen-mediated anaphylaxis


Project description:

This project focuses on understanding and interfering with the molecular events in allergic reactions. Allergy is a disease in which the immune system reacts to otherwise harmless triggers, allergens, from the environment. Central in the allergic reaction is the binding of IgE antibodies to these allergens. In allergic patients, the allergen-specific IgE antibodies are bound to high-affinity IgE receptors (FcεRI) and causes long-term sensitization of effector cells. Binding of allergens to these IgE/receptor complex leads to activation of the effector cells and triggers immediate allergic reactions and potentially anaphylaxis, which can have severe consequences for the patient.

In recent years, the concept of using single domain antibodies (nanobodies) as therapeutics has gained ground.

In this project, I will explore the potential of using nanobodies as inhibitors of allergic reactions. I will develop and characterize novel nanobodies and nanobody-based formats that inhibit the IgE/allergen interaction and thereby reduce the risk of anaphylaxis during allergen exposure.

Using nanobody-based inhibitors for immunotherapy in allergic patients could potentially bypass existing long-term allergen immunotherapy concepts or establish new concepts for those allergies lacking immunotherapeutic options so far.

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