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Prof. Dr. Dirk Baumjohann
Medical Clinic III for Oncology, Hematology, Immuno-Oncology and Rheumatology

University Hospital Bonn, University of Bonn
Venusberg-Campus 1, 53127 Bonn, Germany
E-mail: dirk.baumjohann@uni-bonn.de

Research interests

CD4-positive T helper cells orchestrate the cellular and humoral immune response to various pathogens, including viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites. Different subsets of T helper cells have been characterized based on their functional properties. Among these, T follicular helper (Tfh) cells provide help to B cells for efficient antibody production. In contrast, dysregulated Tfh cells can also cause autoimmunity and allergies. Interestingly, depending on the context, Tfh cell frequencies have been correlated with either positive or negative outcomes for various tumor entities. Recently, Tfh cells have emerged as central intermediaries of other T helper cell-mediated immune responses that involve the generation of certain effector and memory T helper cell populations. Nevertheless, the precise relationship between Tfh and other T helper cell subsets remains unknown.

We are combining cellular and molecular immunology techniques and state-of-the-art genomic approaches to answer fundamental questions about T helper cell differentiation and plasticity and their impact on adaptive immune responses. It is anticipated that a better understanding of how Tfh cells are regulated on the molecular level and how Tfh cells contribute to T helper cell fate decisions will yield important insights into the rational design of drugs and therapies that target Tfh cells in autoimmune diseases and allergies or boost their function during infection and vaccination.

Publications

Human adenoid tissue-based ex vivo culture systems reveal anti-inflammatory drug effects on T and B cells. Schmidt A*, Huber JE, Sercan Alp Ö, Gürkov R, Reichel CA, Herrmann M, Keppler OT, Leeuw T, Baumjohann D*. EBioMedicine 2020 Feb 27;53:102684. *Shared corresponding authors

Gene dose matters: Considerations for the use of inducible CD4-CreERT2 mouse lines. Zeiträg J, Alterauge D, Dahlström F, Baumjohann D*. Eur J Immunol. 2020 Feb 22. doi: 10.1002/eji.201948461. *Corresponding author

Fingolimod profoundly reduces frequencies and alters subset composition of circulating Tfh cells in MS patients. Huber JE, Chang Y, Meinl I, Kümpfel T, Meinl E, Baumjohann D*. J Immunol. 2020 Mar 1;204(5):1101-1110. *Corresponding author

Guidelines for the use of flow cytometry and cell sorting in immunological studies (second edition). Cossarizza A, Chang HD, Radbruch A, …, Baumjohann D, …, Zychlinsky A. Eur J Immunol. 2019 Oct;49(10):1457-1973.

MicroRNA-mediated regulation of T follicular helper and T follicular regulatory cell identity. Maul J, Alterauge D, Baumjohann D*. Immunol Rev. 2019 Mar;288(1):97-111. *Corresponding author

Sodium chloride is an ionic checkpoint for human Th2 cell responses and shapes the atopic skin microenvironment. Matthias J, Maul J, Noster R, Meinl H, Chao YY, Gerstenberg H, Jeschke F, Gilles G, Welle A, Walter J, Nordstroem K, Eberhardt K, Renisch D, Donakonda S, Knolle P, Soll D, Grabbe S, Garzorz-Stark N, Eyerich K, Biedermann T, Baumjohann D, Zielinski CE. Sci Transl Med. 2019 Feb 20;11(480).

Post-transcriptional gene regulation of T follicular helper cells by RNA-binding proteins and microRNAs. Baumjohann D*, Heissmeyer V*. Front Immunol. 2018 Jul 31;9;1794. *Shared corresponding authors

Diverse functions of miR-17-92 cluster microRNAs in T helper cells. Baumjohann D*. Cancer Lett. 2018 Jun 1;423:147-152. *Corresponding author

Roquin Suppresses the PI3K-mTOR Signaling Pathway to Inhibit T Helper Cell Differentiation and Conversion of Treg to Tfr Cells. Essig K, Hu D, Guimaraes JC, Alterauge D, Edelmann S, Raj T, Kranich J, Behrens G, Heiseke A, Floess S, Klein J, Maiser A, Marschall S, Hrabĕ de Angelis M, Leonhardt H, Calkhoven CF, Noessner E, Brocker T, Huehn J, Krug AB, Zavolan M, Baumjohann D, Heissmeyer V. Immunity. 2017, Dec 19;47(6):1067-1082.

MicroRNA regulation of type 2 innate lymphoid cell homeostasis and function in allergic inflammation. Singh PB, Pua HH, Happ HC, Schneider C, von Moltke J, Locksley RM, Baumjohann D, Ansel KM. J Exp Med. 2017 Dec 4;214(12):3627-3643.

A Distinct Inhibitory Function for miR-18a in Th17 Cell Differentiation. Montoya MM, Maul J, Singh PB, Pua HH, Dahlström F, Wu N, Huang X, Ansel KM*, Baumjohann D*. J Immunol. 2017 Jul 15;199(2):559-569. *Equal contribution and shared corresponding authors

Antibodies inhibit transmission and aggregation of C9orf72 poly-GA dipeptide repeat proteins. Zhou Q, Lehmer C, Michaelsen M, Mori K, Alterauge D, Baumjohann D, Schludi MH, Greiling J, Farny D, Flatley A, Feederle R, May S, Schreiber F, Arzberger T, Kuhm C, Klopstock T, Hermann A, Haass C, Edbauer D. EMBO Mol Med. 2017 May;9(5):687-702.

Experimental priming of encephalitogenic Th1/Th17 cells requires pertussis toxin-driven IL-1β production by myeloid cells. Ronchi F, Basso C, Preite S, Reboldi A, Baumjohann D, Perlini L, Lanzavecchia A, Sallusto F. Nat Commun. 2016 May 18;7:11541.

Emerging roles for microRNAs in T follicular helper cell differentiation. Maul J, Baumjohann D*. Trends Immunol. 2016 May;37(5):297-309. *Corresponding author

Somatic mutations and affinity maturation are impaired by excessive numbers of T follicular helper cells and restored by Treg cells or memory T cells. Preite S, Baumjohann D, Foglierini M, Basso C, Ronchi F, Rodriguez BM, Corti D, Lanzavecchia A, Sallusto F. Eur J Immunol. 2015 Nov;45(11):3010-21.

Tracking early T follicular helper cell differentiation in vivo. Baumjohann D*, Ansel KM. Methods Mol Biol. 2015; 1291:27-38. *Corresponding author

Self-Enforcing Feedback Activation between BCL6 and Pre-B Cell Receptor Signaling Defines a Distinct Subtype of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Geng H, Hurtz C, Lenz KB, Chen Z, Baumjohann D, Thompson S, Goloviznina NA, Chen WY, Huan J, LaTocha D, Ballabio E, Xiao G, Lee JW, Deucher A, Qi Z, Park E, Huang C, Nahar R, Kweon SM, Shojaee S, Chan LN, Yu J, Kornblau SM, Bijl JJ, Ye BH, Mark Ansel K, Paietta E, Melnick A, Hunger SP, Kurre P, Tyner JW, Loh ML, Roeder RG, Druker BJ, Burger JA, Milne TA, Chang BH, Müschen M. Cancer Cell. 2015 Mar 9;27(3):409-25.

A microRNA upregulated in asthma airway T cells promotes TH2 cytokine production. Simpson LJ, Patel S, Bhakta NR, Choy DF, Brightbill HD, Ren X, Wang Y, Pua HH, Baumjohann D, Montoya MM, Panduro M, Remedios KA, Huang X, Fahy JV, Arron JR, Woodruff PG, Ansel KM. Nat Immunol. 2014 Dec; 15(12):1162-70.

MicroRNA regulation of the germinal center response. Baumjohann D*, Ansel KM*. Curr Opin Immunol. 2014 Jun;28:6-11. *Shared corresponding authors

Comparative transcriptional and functional profiling defines conserved programs of intestinal DC differentiation in humans and mice. Watchmaker, PW, Lahl K, Lee M, Baumjohann D, Morton J, Kim SJ, Zeng R, Dent A, Ansel KM, Diamond B, Hadeiba H, Butcher EC. Nat Immunol. 2014 Jan;15(1):98-108.

MicroRNA-mediated regulation of T helper cell differentiation and plasticity. Baumjohann D, Ansel KM. Nat Rev Immunol. 2013 Sep;13(9):666-78.

The microRNA cluster miR-17~92 promotes TFH cell differentiation and represses subset-inappropriate gene expression. Baumjohann D, Kageyama R, Clingan JM, Morar MM, Patel S, de Kouchkovsky D, Bannard O, Bluestone JA, Matloubian M, Ansel KM*, Jeker LT*. Nat Immunol. 2013 August;14(8):840-848. *Equal contribution

Persistent antigen and germinal center B cells sustain T follicular helper cell responses and phenotype. Baumjohann D*, Preite S, Reboldi A, Ronchi F, Ansel KM, Lanzavecchia A, Sallusto F*. Immunity. 2013 Mar 21;38(3):596-605. *Shared corresponding authors

IL-4 production by Follicular Helper T cells requires the conserved Il4 enhancer HS V/CNS2. Pandurangan V, Seumois G, Simpson LJ, Abdul-Wajid S, Baumjohann D, Panduro M, Huang X, Interlandi J, Djuretic IM, Brown DR, Sharpe AH, Rao A, Ansel KM. Immunity. 2012 Feb 24;36(2):175-87.

Cutting Edge: Distinct Waves of BCL6 Expression During T Follicular Helper Cell Development. Baumjohann D, Okada T, Ansel KM. J Immunol. 2011 Sep 1;187(5):2089-92.

The concerted action of GM-CSF and Flt3-ligand on in vivo dendritic cell homeostasis. Kingston D, Schmid MA, Onai N, Obata-Onai A, Baumjohann D, Manz MG. Blood. 2009 Jul 23;114(4):835-43.

C-C chemokine receptor 6-regulated entry of T(H)-17 cells into the CNS through the choroid plexus is required for the initiation of EAE. Reboldi A, Coisne C, Baumjohann D, Benvenuto F, Bottinelli D, Lira S, Uccelli A, Lanzavecchia A, Engelhardt B, Sallusto F. Nat Immunol. 2009 May;10(5):514-23.

CD40L+ CD4+ memory T cells migrate in a CD62P-dependent fashion into reactive lymph nodes and license dendritic cells for T cell priming. Martín-Fontecha A, Baumjohann D, Guarda G, Reboldi A, Hons M, Lanzavecchia A, Sallusto F. J Exp Med. 2008;205(11):2561-74.

Non-invasive imaging of dendritic cell migration in vivo. Baumjohann D, Lutz MB. Immunobiology. 2006;211(6-8):587-97.

In vivo magnetic resonance imaging of dendritic cell migration into the draining lymph nodes of mice. Baumjohann D*, Hess A*, Budinsky L, Brune K, Schuler G, Lutz MB. Eur J Immunol. 2006;36(9):2544-55. *Equal contribution

For an up-to-date list of publications see PubMed
(https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=Dirk+Baumjohann)
or Publons
(https://publons.com/researcher/2856993/dirk-baumjohann/publications/)