The Therapeutic Immunomodulation Group is led by Prof. Johan Kuiper. In this group we aim to identify novel immunologic targets and apply immunotherapy to inhibit or even prevent the development of atherosclerosis.
Atherosclerosis is a chronic inflammatory disease, and vaccination may be an attractive method to induce long lasting protection against endogenous factors that contribute to the development of atherosclerosis. We have shown that for example vaccination against modified LDL or interleukin-12 limits the development of atherosclerosis. We also focus on the development of cellular immunotherapies to inhibit atherosclerosis, as we have shown using myeloid-derived suppressor cells and mesenchymal stem cells. Moreover, modulation of regulatory proteins of inflammation, including costimulatory pathways and cytokines, are explored as therapeutic strategies to prevent atherosclerosis.