Tissue-immune crosstalk in metabolic health and disease

Tissue-immune crosstalk in metabolic health and disease

Our research group is at the University Hospital Tübingen in the Department of Diabetology, Endocrinology, and Nephrology. We are affiliated with the M3 institute, the Institute of Diabetes Research and Metabolic Diseases (IDM), and the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD). 

We are studying the dynamic interactions between tissue resident immune cells, stromal cells, and microbes in metabolically relevant tissues that interface with the environment. We use an interdisciplinary approach combining the fields of immunology, diabetology, and microbiology to increase the understanding of tissue-immune crosstalk and factors that dictate metabolic health and disease, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). By integrating the abundant clinical resources of the University Hospital Tübingen, we aim to understand tissue immune cells in their local environment (niche), defined by specialized stromal cell subsets. For this, we pair advanced single-cell based techniques such as flow cytometric analysis and sorting with molecular techniques, including single-cell RNA sequencing and 3D volumetric imaging, allowing us to visualize and quantify complex immune and stromal cell topography in the context of metabolic diseases. 


Dr. med. Julia Sbierski-Kind

Physician Scientist

Department Innere Medizin | Abteilung IV
Diabetologie, Endokrinologie & Nephrologie

Adresse: Otfried-Müller-Str. 37
72076 Tübingen

E-Mail-Adresse: julia.sbierski-kind@med.uni-tuebingen.de

Personenprofil: Short CV

Informations and Links

We are looking for motivated candidates (PhD student and/or Postdoctoral fellow) with experience and passion for immunology and tissue biology. Interested candidates should send a CV and cover letter to julia.sbierski-kind@med.uni-tuebingen.de

Please have three references available upon request. We also accept graduate students and MD/PhD students through the PhD Program in Experimental Medicine

Selected publications

  • Group 2 innate lymphoid cells constrain type 3/17 lymphocytes in shared stromal niches to restrict liver fibrosis. Julia Sbierski-Kind, Kelly M Cautivo, Johanna C Wagner, Madelene W Dahlgren, Julia Nilsson, Maria Krasilnikov, Nicholas M. Mroz, Carlos O. Lizama, Anna Lu Gan, Peri R Matatia, Marcela T Taruselli, Anthony A Chang, Sofia Caryotakis, Claire E O’Leary, Maya Kotas, Aras N Mattis, Tien Peng, Richard M Locksley, Ari B Molofsky. bioRxiv 2023.04.26.537913; doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2023.04.26.537913
  • Persistent immune abnormalities discriminate post-COVID syndrome from convalescence. Julia Sbierski-Kind, Stephan Schlickeiser, Svenja Feldmann, Veronica Ober, Eva Grüner, Claire Pleimelding, Leonard Gilberg, Isabel Brand, Nikolas Weigl, Mohamed I. M. Ahmed, Gerardo Ibarra, Michael Ruzicka, Christopher Benesch, Anna Pernpruner, Elisabeth Valdinoci, Michael Hoelscher, Kristina Adorjan, Hans Christian Stubbe, Michael Pritsch, Ulrich Seybold, Johannes Bogner, Julia Roider. medRxiv 2023.05.02.23289345; doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2023.05.02.23289345
  • Sbierski-Kind J, Grenkowitz S, Schlickeiser S, Koehn A, Friedrich M, Kunkel D, Glauben R, Brachs S, Mai K, Gordon J, Turnbaugh P, Volk HD, Spranger J, Jumpertz von Schwartzenberg J. Effects of caloric restriction on the gut microbiome are linked with immune senescence. Microbiome 2022 Apr
  • O'Leary CE, Sbierski-Kind J, Kotas ME, Wagner JC, Liang HE, Schroeder AW, de Tenorio JC, von Moltke J, Ricardo-Gonzalez RR, Eckalbar WL, Molofsky AB, Schneider C, Locksley RM. Bile acid-sensitive tuft cells regulate biliary neutrophil influx. Sci Immunol. 2022 Mar 4.
  • Cautivo KM, Matatia PR, Lizama CO, Mroz NM, Dahlgren MW, Yu X, Sbierski-Kind J, Taruselli MT, Brooks JF, Wade-Vallance A, Caryotakis SE, Chang AA, Liang HE, Zikherman J, Locksley RM, Molofsky AB. Interferon gamma constrains type 2 lymphocyte niche boundaries during mixed inflammation. Immunity. 2022 Feb 8.
  • Sbierski-Kind J, Mroz N, Molofsky AB. Perivascular stromal cells: Directors of tissue immune niches. Immunol Rev. 2021 Jul.
  • Sbierski-Kind J, Goldeck D, Buchmann N, Spranger J, Volk HD, Steinhagen-Thiessen E, Pawelec G, Demuth I, Spira D. T cell phenotypes associated with insulin resistance: results from the Berlin Aging Study II. Immun Ageing. 2020 Dec 21.
  • Sbierski-Kind J, Mai K, Kath J, Jurisch A, Streitz M, Kuchenbecker L, Babel N, Nienen M, Jürchott K, Spranger L, Jumpertz von Schwartzenberg R, Decker AM, Krüger U, Volk HD, Spranger J. Association between Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue Inflammation, Insulin Resistance, and Calorie Restriction in Obese Females. J Immunol. 2020 Jul 1.
  • Sbierski-Kind J, Schmidt-Bleek K, Streitz M, Kath J, Spranger J, Volk HD. An Advanced Murine Model for Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis in Association with Type 2 Diabetes. J Vis Exp. 2019 Apr 26
  • Sbierski-Kind J, Kath J, Brachs S, Streitz M, von Herrath MG, Kühl AA, Schmidt-Bleek K, Mai K, Spranger J, Volk HD. Distinct Housing Conditions Reveal a Major Impact of Adaptive Immunity on the Course of Obesity-Induced Type 2 Diabetes. Front Immunol. 2018 May 28.
  • Grahammer F, Wigge C, Schell C, Kretz O, Patrakka J, Schneider S, Klose M, Kind J, Arnold SJ, Habermann A, Bräuniger R, Rinschen MM, Völker L, Bregenzer A, Rubbenstroth D, Boerries M, Kerjaschki D, Miner JH, Walz G, Benzing T, Fornoni A, Frangakis AS, Huber TB. A flexible, multilayered protein scaffold maintains the slit in between glomerular podocytes. JCI Insight. 2016 Jun 16.