Development and application of intein chemistry-based specific probes for macrophage fate determination during chronic inflammatory processes

Live macrophages labelled with indestructible fluorescent beads.
© Henning Mootz, Friedemann Kiefer

Principal investigators: Henning Mootz, Friedemann Kiefer
Project time: 07/2013 - 06/2015
Project code: FF-2013-20

Macrophages predominate chronic inflammation, yet their further fate is poorly understood. Using newly discovered self splicing proteins, called inteins, we develop based on immunoglobulin heavy chain fragments, novel, selective macrophage ligands. Persistent labelling of macrophages in vivo will allow us to follow their trafficking routes, dwell times and destiny intravitally but also post mortem. These insights in macrophage behaviour will foster our understanding and possibly provide novel treatment routes for chronic inflammatory diseases like atherosclerosis, multiple sclerosis and arthritis.