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Transplantation Immunology

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HORIZON-MSCA-2022-DN-01 “Innovative Applications of Extracorporeal Photopheresis in Solid Organ Transplantation”

Project title: ECP induction therapy after lung transplantation

Principal Investigator: Thomas Wekerle

Institution: Medical University of Vienna

Project Homepage:


Alberto Benazzo (Medical University of Vienna)

Peter Jaksch (Medical University of Vienna)

Status: Ongoing (1.9.2023 – 31.8.2027) 48 months


Despite major advances in recent years, outcomes after lung transplantation remain are inferior to other types of organ transplants. High rates of acute and chronic rejection, as well as infectious complications, limit graft survival. Preliminary evidence from small, uncontrolled trials suggest beneficial effects of ECP in lung transplantation, particularly with regard to chronic rejection processes (Jaksch, P. et al. J Heart Lung Transplant. 2012). Therefore, a prospective, randomized, controlled single center trial is being performed at MUV to test prophylactic ECP therapy added onto standard immunosuppression (tacrolimus, MMF, steroids) in de novo lung transplant recipients with COPD as underlying disease. In the study group, 8 cycles of ECP treatment are administered within three months post-transplant. From this RCT cohort of 62 patients, samples have already been acquired and biobanked for the first 6 months of post-transplant follow-up. A comprehensive phenotypic profiling of leukocyte subsets using polychromatic flow cytometry and standardized antibody panels is ongoing. The randomized setting offers a unique opportunity to investigate mechanisms of action of ECP using biobanked samples.


Thomas Wekerle | © MedUni Wien/feelimage


Professor of Transplantation Immunology

Tel.: +43 (0)1 40400-39380

Kerstin Pöschl | © MedUni Wien/feelimage

Kerstin Pöschl, MSc

Office 9F
Tel.: +43 (0)1 40400-39381
Fax: +43 (0)1 40400-39382
Room 09.F9.13