Pneumonia and Acute Lung Injury

Acute lower respiratory tract infections represent an increasing public health problem worldwide, resulting in a disease burden greater than that of any other infection with mortality rates unchanged over the past 50 years. Likewise, the lack of any therapeutic treatment for the most devastating clinical course of pulmonary infection, Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS), and an unacceptably high mortality rate, underscore an urgent need for novel, effective therapeutic approaches. Both microbial attack (bacteria, viruses, fungi) and non-microbial inflammatory injury (aspiration, inhalation of toxic gases) may cause Acute Lung Injury (ALI) with severe respiratory failure. The goal of this Disease Area is to decipher the molecular mechanisms underlying the spread of inflammation into the alveoli and to understand the cellular and molecular signaling pathways leading to dissolution of inflammation and repair of the alveolar epithelium integrity. Based on this knowledge, new therapeutic concepts are being developed to attenuate lung tissue damage and promote tissue repair and organ regeneration.

Scientific Coordinators of the Disease Area

Prof. Dr. Tobias Welte (BREATH)
Prof. Dr. Susanne Herold (UGMLC)

Administrative Coordinators of the Disease Area

Dr. Sylvia Weißmann (UGMLC)

Participating DZL Partner Sites


News about Pneumonia and Acute Lung Injury

18. August 2021

Strong antiviral immunity in the upper airways protects children from severe COVID-19

Children can also be infected with the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, but have a substantially lower risk for developing severe COVID-19 disease compared to adults.
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11. August 2021

Model to serve as basis for new therapeutic strategies

COVID-19 disease severity is determined by the individual patient’s immune response. The precise mechanisms taking place inside the lungs and blood during the early phase of the disease remain unclear.
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30. July 2021

T Lymphocytes and COVID-19

A collaboration of multiple research institutions with researchers of the DZL site Munich involved reveals the cellular activation states of SARS-CoV-2 reactive T cells in the lung and blood. The study was published in Nature Communications.
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