W2 Professorship for Experimental Vascular Medicine

Research Group Leader

  • Prof. Dr. med. Florian P. Limbourg


Research Assistants

  • Jaba Gamrekelashvili, PhD 
  • Dr. rer. nat. Tamar Kapanadze 
  • Dr. med. Christian Beger 
  • Dr. med. Khaled Dastagir 
  • Nicole Schroth 
  • Yuangao Xu 
  • Theresa Karg 
  • Carla Schulze 


Technical Assistants

  • Stefan Sablotny 


Scientific profile

In the laboratory, we are investigating the fundamentals of the development and regulation of the inflammatory response in cardiovascular diseases, and in clinical studies, new diagnostic and management concepts for patients with art. Hypertension (high blood pressure).  

Organ or tissue damage causes an inflammatory response (inflammation) that aims to promote tissue healing and restore organ function. However, the inflammatory response is too often uncontrolled, amplifying disease processes. We have shown that blood vessels influence the cell fate of monocytes and macrophages through cell-cell communication, directly influencing the inflammatory response at the site. Different endothelial cell populations express Notch ligands of the delta-like (Dll) family in specialized niches, which in turn activates Notch signaling in monocytes and controls homeostatic differentiation of monocytes. The same process also promotes monocyte maturation into healing macrophages after ischemia, whereas targeted deletion of the ligand in endothelial cells impairs normal monocyte differentiation, leading to increased inflammation and impairing vascular regeneration after ischemia. In recent work, we further demonstrated that vascular endothelium regulates the formation of tertiary lymphoid structures, de novo immune centers in solid organs. This work has opened a new aspect of the concept of endothelial dysfunction and revealed another important function of blood vessels independent of blood flow.  

In a current clinical trial of the Hypertension Center, we are testing the use of a blood pressure app for app-based self-management of hypertension in collaboration with primary care physicians.  In a clinical registry study, we are testing novel and simplified algorithms for the work-up of patients with refractory hypertension.  


Selected publications

Richter B*, Kapanadze T*, Weingärtner N, Walter S, Vogt I, Grund A, Schmitz J, 

Bräsen JH, Limbourg FP, Haffner D, Leifheit-Nestler M. High phosphate-induced 

progressive proximal tubular injury is associated with the activation of 

Stat3/Kim-1 signaling pathway and macrophage recruitment. FASEB J. 2022 

Jul;36(7):e22407. doi: 10.1096/fj.202200167RR. PMID: 35713543. 


Fleig S, Kapanadze T, Bernier-Latmani J, Lill JK, Wyss T, Gamrekelashvili J, 

Kijas D, Liu B, Hüsing AM, Bovay E, Jirmo AC, Halle S, Ricke-Hoch M, Adams RH, 

Engel DR, von Vietinghoff S, Förster R, Hilfiker-Kleiner D, Haller H, Petrova 

TV, Limbourg FP. Loss of vascular endothelial notch signaling promotes 

spontaneous formation of tertiary lymphoid structures. Nat Commun. 2022 Apr 

19;13(1):2022. doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-29701-x. PMID: 35440634; PMCID: 



Gamrekelashvili J, Haller H, Limbourg FP. Analysis of Monocyte Cell Fate by 

Adoptive Transfer in a Murine Model of TLR7-induced Systemic Inflammation. Bio 

Protoc. 2021 May 5;11(9):e4007. doi: 10.21769/BioProtoc.4007. PMID: 34124307; 

PMCID: PMC8161141. 


Gamrekelashvili J, Kapanadze T, Sablotny S, Ratiu C, Dastagir K, Lochner M, 

Karbach S, Wenzel P, Sitnow A, Fleig S, Sparwasser T, Kalinke U, Holzmann B, 

Haller H, Limbourg FP. Notch and TLR signaling coordinate monocyte cell fate and 

inflammation. Elife. 2020 Jul 29;9:e57007. doi: 10.7554/eLife.57007. PMID: 

32723480; PMCID: PMC7413669. 


Beger C, Unger T, Haller H, Limbourg FP. Antihypertensive prescription 

patterns and cardiovascular risk in patients with newly diagnosed hypertension- 

an analysis of statutory health insurance data in Germany. Blood Press. 2020 

Dec;29(6):357-361. doi: 10.1080/08037051.2020.1779582. Epub 2020 Jun 16. PMID: 



Haupt F, Krishnasamy K, Napp LC, Augustynik M, Limbourg A, Gamrekelashvili J, 

Bauersachs J, Haller H, Limbourg FP. Retinal myeloid cells regulate tip cell 

selection and vascular branching morphogenesis via Notch ligand Delta-like 1. 

Sci Rep. 2019 Jul 5;9(1):9798. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-46308-3. PMID: 31278348; 

PMCID: PMC6611798. 


Kapanadze T, Bankstahl JP, Wittneben A, Koestner W, Ballmaier M, 

Gamrekelashvili J, Krishnasamy K, Limbourg A, Ross TL, Meyer GJ, Haller H, 

Bengel FM, Limbourg FP. Multimodal and Multiscale Analysis Reveals Distinct 

Vascular, Metabolic and Inflammatory Components of the Tissue Response to Limb 

Ischemia. Theranostics. 2019 Jan 1;9(1):152-166. doi: 10.7150/thno.27175. PMID: 

30662559; PMCID: PMC6332799. 


Getzin T, Krishnasamy K, Gamrekelashvili J, Kapanadze T, Limbourg A, Häger C, 

Napp LC, Bauersachs J, Haller H, Limbourg FP. The chemokine receptor 

CX3CR1 coordinates monocyte recruitment and endothelial regeneration 

after arterial injury. EMBO Mol Med. 2018 Feb;10(2):151-159. doi: 

10.15252/emmm.201707502. PMID: 29229785; PMCID: PMC5801509. 


Krishnasamy K, Limbourg A, Kapanadze T, Gamrekelashvili J, Beger C, Häger C, 

Lozanovski VJ, Falk CS, Napp LC, Bauersachs J, Mack M, Haller H, Weber C, Adams 

RH, Limbourg FP. Blood vessel control of macrophage maturation promotes 

arteriogenesis in ischemia. Nat Commun. 2017 Oct 16;8(1):952. doi: 

10.1038/s41467-017-00953-2. PMID: 29038527; PMCID: PMC5643305. 


Gamrekelashvili J, Giagnorio R, Jussofie J, Soehnlein O, Duchene J, Briseño 

CG, Ramasamy SK, Krishnasamy K, Limbourg A, Kapanadze T, Ishifune C, Hinkel R, 

Radtke F, Strobl LJ, Zimber-Strobl U, Napp LC, Bauersachs J, Haller H, Yasutomo 

K, Kupatt C, Murphy KM, Adams RH, Weber C, Limbourg FP. Regulation of monocyte 

cell fate by blood vessels mediated by Notch signalling. Nat Commun. 2016 Aug 

31;7:12597. doi: 10.1038/ncomms12597. Erratum in: Nat Commun. 2017 May 

03;8:15486. PMID: 27576369; PMCID: PMC5013671. 


Current third-party funding

Regulation of monocyte lineage development in systemic and vascular inflammation and 

the influence of Notch signaling 

Sponsor: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft 

PI: Gamrekelashvili GA 2443/3-1, 2021-24 


Monozyten-Differenzierung  in der ischämischen Knochenmarknische bei Extremitätenischämie und Regulation durch die Notch Signaltransduktion 

Sponsor: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft 

PI: Kapanadze KA 5549/2-1, 2021-24 


Topographie der vaskulären Nische bei Ischämie  

Sponsor: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft 

PI: Limbourg Li948/7-1, 2018-2022 



Sponsor MHH/ Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft  

PI: Dastagir, 2019-21 


Regulation of monocyte cell fate by blood vessels through Notch signaling and significance for vascular repair 

Sponsor: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft 

PI: Gamrekelashvili Ga2443/2-1, 2017-2020 


Junge Akademie / Clinical Scientist Programm  

Sponsor: MHH/ Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft 

PI: Fleig, 2017-19 


Patrolling monocytes in endothelial function and molecular regulation 

Sponsor: Deutsche Stiftung für Herzforschung 

PI: Gamrekelashvili/Limbourg, 2015-16 


Open positions and PhD projects




E-Mail limbourg.florian(at)mh-hannover.de