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Prof. dr. Peter Heeringa

Peter Heeringa

Vasculitis Expertise Center Groningen,Dept of Pathology and Medical Biology, University Medical Center Groningen

Our research aims to investigate whether aberrations in B cell function promote pathogenic immune responses in anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic antibody-associated vasculitides (AAV), a group of systemic autoimmune disorders. Our interests focus on 1) a disturbed distribution of B cell subsets 2) aberrant selection, activation and maintenance of autoreactive B cells 3) predominance of pathogenic antibody epitope specificity and 4) aberrant glycosylation of ANCA IgG. Based on newly obtained knowledge on B cell dysregulation in AAV, we aim to improve disease monitoring and enable prevention of relapse via identification of sensitive diagnostic and more specific therapeutic strategies.


5 recent publications related to B-cells and antibodies

  1. von Borstel A, Land J, Abdulahad WH, et al. CD27+CD38hi B Cell Frequency During Remission Predicts Relapsing Disease in Granulomatosis With Polyangiitis Patients. Front Immunol. 2019;10:2221. Published 2019 Sep 24. doi:10.3389/fimmu.2019.02221
  2. Ooi JD, Jiang JH, Eggenhuizen PJ, et al. A plasmid-encoded peptide from Staphylococcus aureus induces anti-myeloperoxidase nephritogenic autoimmunity. Nat Commun. 2019;10(1):3392. Published 2019 Jul 29. doi:10.1038/s41467-019-11255-0
  3. von Borstel A, Abdulahad WH, Sanders JS, et al. Evidence for enhanced Bruton’s tyrosine kinase activity in transitional and naïve B cells of patients with granulomatosis with polyangiitis. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2019;58(12):2230-2239. doi:10.1093/rheumatology/kez205
  4. von Borstel A, Lintermans LL, Heeringa P, et al. Circulating CD24hiCD38hi regulatory B cells correlate inversely with the ThEM17 cell frequency in granulomatosis with polyangiitis patients [published online ahead of print, 2019 Jan 10]. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2019;10.1093/rheumatology/key412. doi:10.1093/rheumatology/key412
  5. von Borstel A, Sanders JS, Rutgers A, Stegeman CA, Heeringa P, Abdulahad WH. Cellular immune regulation in the pathogenesis of ANCA-associated vasculitides. Autoimmun Rev. 2018;17(4):413-421. doi:10.1016/j.autrev.2017.12.002

Link to full publication list:

Currently supervision PhD research of Carlo Bonasia (Working title: Characterization of autoantigen-specific circulating B-cells in different B-cell-mediated diseases)

Supervision of PhD awarded candidates (research related to B-cells and antibodies)

  1. Lepse, The regulatory and effector functions of B cells in ANCA-associated vasculitis. Awarded: 22-04-2014
  2. Land, B cell phenotype and function in granulomatosis with polyangiitis: Towards prediction of relapse. Awarded: 13-06-2016
  3. von Borstel, B cells in small vessel vasculitis: towards balance between regulators and effectors. Awarded; 11-09-2019

Work package leader WP5.

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