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©Andreas Ebner

Reinhard Kirnbauer, M.D.

Principial Investigator

Dr. Kirnbauer acts as chief of the Laboratory of Viral Oncology and Professor at the Department of Dermatology. He has a strong interest in translational research and the pathobiology of papillomaviruses. He is recognized for over 30 years of pioneering work on the development of prophylactic human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines, seroepidemiology, and basic aspects of papillomavirus infection. As co-inventor of HPV16 virus-like particles (VLP) technology with Drs Schiller and Lowy, in 1992 he was the first to describe the assembly from L1 into morphologically correct VLP and the induction of high-level neutralizing antisera. In preclinical animal models he then demonstrated VLP vaccine efficacy in rabbits and cows, which formed the basis of clinical HPV vaccine development. His inventions were licensed by MSD and GSK to permit them to develop and produce the current HPV vaccines, Gardasil (-9) and Cervarix. He also developed a VLP-based ELISA that has been widely used in seroepidemiology and vaccination trials. Besides basic work on the cellular papillomavirus receptor, he has developed a vaccine platform based on papillomavirus VLP that carry foreign peptides on their surface, to combat diseases like Alzheimer disease or Prion-related diseases. He also collaborates with the Veterinary Medical University of Vienna developing VLP vaccines against bovine papillomavirus (BPV)-induced neoplasms in horses. He recognizes the need to expand the coverage of licensed prophylactic HPV vaccines to cover all oncogenic types and has joined efforts with Richard Roden at Johns Hopkins University to develop broadly protective HPV vaccines. He has long-standing experience in HPV vaccine development and leadership skills.

Mag. Anna Sanchez Jimenez

PhD student
©Andreas Ebner

Bettina Huber

Staff scientist, Junior leader
 © Andreas Ebner

Christina Schellenbacher

Clinical scientifist
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Saeed Shafti-Keramat