hoffmannGroup Leader, Department of Pathophysiology and Allergy Research, Medical University of Vienna, AUSTRIA
Assoc. Prof. Medical University of Vienna, AUSTRIA

BS: University of Vienna AUSTRIA
PhD: University of Vienna AUSTRIA
Postdoctoral Training: University of Vienna AUSTRIA; SIAF, Davos, Switzerland

Research Interests:
• Allergen-food matrix interaction
• Characterization of food allergens for improved risk management

Karin Hoffmann-Sommergruber heads the research group Molecular Allergology. She obtained her B.S. in Biology and a Ph.D. in Molecular biology at the University of Vienna. As a Postdoc she moved to the research area of allergy research and succeeded in identifying and cloning numerous pollen and food allergens for component resolved diagnosis. In parallel her experimental work contributed to a better understanding of function of pathogenesis related proteins in plants and their allergenic capacity. Recently her interests expanded to study the impact of food processing methods on the allergenicity of food proteins and to investigate the allergen uptake by dendritic cells. Assoc. Prof. Hoffmann-Sommergruber coordinated an EC funded project on plant food allergy and was part of the multidisciplinary project, EuroPrevall. Within EuroPrevall she developed an allergen library, which was further used to set up new allergen diagnostic devices and compare them with existing diagnostic tools. She participated in an EFSA ad hoc working group on the assessment of allergenicity of GM foods and was a member of the steering committee of the Swiss NRP on benefits and risks of GMO plants. She has published 95 peer reviewed papers (h Index=35) and an active faculty member for training students.

Proposed PhD research projects:
From molecular structures of food allergens and food matrix components towards diagnosis, treatment and prevention of food allergy

Selected publications:

  1. Markovic-Housley, Z., A. Basle, S. Padavatan, B. Maderegger, T. Schirmer, and K. Hoffmann-Sommergruber. 2009. Crystal structure of the major carrot allergen Dau c 1. Acta Crystallography Section D, 65:1206-1212. PMID: 19923716
  2. Gaier, S., C. Oberhuber, W. Hemmer, C. Radauer, N. M. Rigby, J. T. Marsh, C. E. N. Mills, P. R. Shewry, and K. Hoffmann-Sommergruber. 2009. Pru p 3 as a marker for symptom severity for peach allergic patients in a birch pollen environment. J. Allergy Clin. Immunol. 124: 166-167. PMID: 19368964
  3. Bublin, M., C. Radauer, I. B.H. Wilson, D. Kraft, O. Scheiner; H. Breiteneder, and K. Hoffmann-Sommergruber. 2003. Cross-reactive N-glycans of Api g 5, a high molecular weight glycoprotein allergen from celery, are required for immunoglobulin E binding and activation of effector cells from allergic patients  FASEB J. 17: 1697-1699. PMID: 12958180
  4. Hoffmann-Sommergruber, K., P. Demoly, R. Crameri, H. Breiteneder, C. Ebner, M. Laimer Da Camara Machado, K.  Blaser, C. Ismail, O. Scheiner, J. Bousquet, and G. Menz. 1999. IgE-reactivity to Api g 1, a major celery allergen, in a Central European population is based on primary sensitization by Bet v 1. J. Allergy Clin. Immunol. 104 (2):478-485. PMID: 10452775
  5. Hoffmann-Sommergruber, K., M. Vanek-Krebitz, C. Radauer, J. Wen, F. Ferreira, O. Scheiner, and H. Breiteneder. 1997. Genomic characterization of members of the Bet v 1-family: Genes coding for allergens and pathogenesis-related proteins share intron positions. Gene, 197: 91-100. PMID: 9332353

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