Sabine Bartel receives Marie Curie Fellowship

Sabine Bartel. Photo: private

Big success for Dr. Sabine Bartel: The Borstel Postdoc receives one of the renowned „Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research Fellowships (RESPIRE 3)“.

The joint program of European Union and European Respiratory Society (ERS) supports early career scientists who aim at working abroad on a lung research topic. For her research project, Sabine Bartel will join the group of Dr. Machteld Hylkema at University Medical Center in Groningen (The Netherlands). The grant of almost 150.000 € is intended for highly topical work on epigenetic editing. Her project aims at epigenetic reprogramming of bronchial epithelial cell of COPD patients in order to find new therapeutic concepts. To that end, substances which can modify the epigenetic environment of certain genes will be transferred to the epithelial cells by extracellular vesicles.

Epigenetics deals with mechanisms that influence transcription activities of genes. In contrast to (genetic) mutations epigenetic alterations don’t change the DNA sequence of a gene. Cells use epigenetic mechanisms in order to up- or downregulate gene expression as an adaption to environmental stimuli.

For Sabine Bartel, epigenetics is not a new topic: One of her main fields is microRNA research in asthma and COPD. microRNAs are small RNA molecules which also influence gene activity. Sabine Bartel studied Molecular Biotechnology at Technical University in Munich and works in the group of Prof. Susanne Krauss-Etschmann at Research Center Borstel. She’s committed member of the ERS as „Early Career Member Representative“ of the Assembly 3 („Cell and Molecular Biology“) and as member of the „Early Career Member Committee“.

More information on epigenetic therapy:

Wu DD, Song J, Bartel S, Krauss-Etschmann S, Rots MG, Hylkema MN (2017) The potential for targeted rewriting of epigenetic marks in COPD as a new therapeutic approach. Pharmacol Ther (ARCNExternal link to the artcle


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