Sie sind hier: FRIAS Fellows Fellows Prof. Dr. Harry Holthöfer

Prof. Dr. Harry Holthöfer

Dublin City University
External Senior Fellow (Marie S. Curie FCFP)
Januar 2016 - März 2017


Prof. Harry Holthofer  MD, PhD graduated from the University of Helsinki,  Finland and  specialized in clinical microbiology/immunology. His hospital-based positions have included those of internal medicine, pulmology, pediatrics and occupational health.

The research of Prof Holthofer has focused on the biology of the glomerular filtration barrier, particularly in congenital nephrotic syndrome as well as kidney complications of  diabetes. For that, various approaches ranging from molecular and cell biology, biochemistry combined with in vitro and in vivo analytical platforms have revealed new integral molecules constituting the functional kidney filtration barrier. The present main research line includes development of new methods for comprehensive understanding of urinary vesicles (including exosomes).

He became Professor and Director of the Technomedicum Research Centre from 2001-2006 in Finland and subsequently moved to Ireland to take up the Professorship and Chair of Bioanalytical Sciences at Dublin City University and to become Director of the Center for Bioanalytical Sciences in September 2006.

He has set up and directed several European Union (EU) funded programs focussing on diabetes, its biomarkers and new diagnostics and is presently setting up a wave of European collaborative grants to and from China.

Prof Holthofer is a founding member of the International Committee to Standardise Proteomics Methods in Kidney Research and European Kidney Health Initiative and serves in the boards of several research organisations including the European ERA-EDTA and got several international prices and acknowledgements of his expertise and achievements.


Publikationen (Auswahl)



Urinary Exosomes for Novel Diabetes Diagnostics

Proteinuria is a key manifestation of kidney diseases. It is a feared complication of diabetes and strongest predictor of cardiovascular emergencies. Glomerular epithelial cells, podocytes, are the main link between diabetes and proteinuria.  These cells present with unique morphology, maintain body homeostasis and show huge vesicular transport activity.

Exosomes are recently found nano-microvesicles in many body fluids including urine, and contain a surprising variety of specific proteins, lipids and many distinct RNA species.

Here we propose a multifaceted approach to reveal the urinary exosome (UE) signature in diabetes, with special emphasis on uncovering the fundamental mechanisms in the podocytes and whether their distinct protein and RNA  signatures can be used  as biomarkers.

A variety of cell culture and existing experimental models will be compared in health vs. diabetic stress. Changes in UE transcriptomics,  organellar proteomics and metabolomics will be collaboratively assayed with the equipment and top expertise readily available at the University of Freiburg. Advanced bioinformatics tools will be used to identify targets for potential monitoring and pathways involved in diabetes.

Major breakthroughs in disease monitoring and diabetes management with significant practical consequences can be expected.