Associate Professor, Chief Physician, Head of Research Unit "Chronic Inflammation in Nephrology"
Short research description:
My research interests are focused on chronic low-grade inflammation and oxidative and glycoxidative stress in renal disease and on new developments for improving renal replacement therapy and patient care. I have been the principle investigator of several research projects, including the recent FP7 EU project BIOCLAIMS, as well as in different clinical trials and participated in previous EU projects including the VITAGE (FP5) and PREDICTIONS (FP6) projects. We are interested in the role of vitamin and antioxidant status of patients with a wide range of impaired renal function up to chronic renal insufficiency requiring renal replacement therapy (including peritoneal and hemodialysis) in chronic low grade inflammation and oxidative stress along with other aspects related to patient outcome. Currently, we are analyzing associations of dietary intake, nutritional status and renal function with chronic low-grade inflammation in the BIOCLAIMS cohort comprising 1300 male and female study subjects covering the entire range from perfectly normal to mildly impaired renal function to elucidate the role of kidney function. All subjects were comprehensively characterized for dietary intake, nutritional status (including vitamins and carotenoids), body composition, vascular function and a large panel of clinical chemistry routine variables and biomarkers of low-grade inflammation. Subgroups of the cohort were further studied for seasonal variability, day-to-day variability and effects of the menstrual cycle. A large database with >1 million entries and a biobank with different types of samples (including peripheral blood mononuclear cells, stabilized RNA and isolated DNA) stored at -80°C are available for new study questions. A special focus was directed on biomarkers that have the potential to discriminate between full health and impaired health; a patent application is currently in preparation. A proposal for a 6-year follow-up of the “super healthy” phenotype subjects is presently in stage 2 of the grant application.
University hospital setting; access to patients with impaired renal function; access to clinical investigations; access to clinical chemistry core laboratory and sepcialized laboratories (MS/LC-MS etc.)
Medical University of Graz
Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Clinical Nephrology