Unit | Clinical Immunology

Our group focuses on systems-immunology-based approaches within the framework of Phase I to III clinical trials. We aim to identify surrogates of protection as well as host factors elicited by subunit and whole parasite vaccines against tuberculosis (TB) and malaria. Clinical trials are performed with our partners of the Ifakara Health Institute in Bagamoyo. Further, the unit develops novel diagnostic tools for paediatric clinical TB in high endemic countries.


Co-morbidity studies analyse the impact of non-communicable diseases on immune responses against infectious diseases, particularly TB. Unit researchers also work to understand the consequences of helminth co-infections on malaria, TB and HIV pathogenesis and immunity.

Brunetti G et al. Nanotechnological immunoassay for rapid label-free analysis of candidate malaria vaccines. Nanoscale. 2021;13(4):2338-2349. DOI: 10.1039/D0NR08083G

Chen Y et al. Structural basis of malaria RIFIN binding by LILRB1-containing antibodies. Nature. 2021(592):639–643. DOI: 10.1038/s41586-021-03378-6

Jongo S.A et al. Immunogenicity and protective efficacy of radiation-attenuated and chemo-attenuated PfSPZ vaccines in Equatoguinean adults. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2021;104(1):283-293. DOI: 10.4269/ajtmh.20-0435

Tumbo A.M et al. Role of human Pegivirus infections in whole Plasmodium falciparum sporozoite vaccination and controlled human malaria infection in African volunteers. Virol J. 2021;18(1):28. DOI: 10.1186/s12985-021-01500-8

Vanobberghen F et al. Efficacy and safety of intravenous ferric carboxymaltose compared with oral iron for the treatment of iron deficiency anaemia in women after childbirth in Tanzania: a parallelgroup, open-label, randomised controlled phase 3 trial. Lancet Glob Health. 2021;9(2):e189-e198. DOI: 10.1016/S2214-109X(20)30448-4