Katharina Lahl

Katharina (Katha) Lahl, Ph.D.


Associate Professor

Cumming School of Medicine, Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Infectious Diseases

Full Member

The Calvin, Phoebe and Joan Snyder Institute for Chronic Diseases, Immunology Research Group

Contact information

Phone number

Office: 403.220.8834


Office: HRIC 4AA10
Lab: HRIC 4B36 via HRIC 4A34


Educational Background

PhD Natural Sciences, Technische Universitat Munich, 2009

Diploma in Biology Technische Universitat Munich, 2005


During my PhD work at the Technical University of Munich, I generated a transgenic mouse line that allows for the depletion of regulatory T cells. I could show that Tregs are critical to maintain systemic immunity in neonatal mice. During my postdoc I investigated intestinal dendritic cell subsets in mouse and man and contributed to studies interrogating the role of plasmacytoid DCs in the immune induction towards Rotavirus. In my independent laboratories in Sweden and Denmark, we continued to study barrier surface immunity towards viruses using Rotavirus and Respiratory Syncytial virus models. We defined DC subset specific requirements for migration and maturation, and found divergent functions for the subsets in response to viral triggers. We also studied the transcriptional regulation of dendritic cell subsets to better understand the drivers of their dichotomy in function.

The core interest of my lab lies in the recognition of viruses by the mucosal immune system.  We focus on dendritic cells subset biology and function with an emphasis on IgA induction at the mucosal surface. My background in tolerance induction and mucosal immunology has given me a holistic view of the cellular players within the delicate ecosystem that maintains immune homeostasis. We hypothesize that early-life viral infections impact on the healthy establishment of barrier and systemic immunity and use enteric/respiratory infection and immunopathology models to interrogate the cellular basis of neonatal immune imprinting and its consequences for barrier health.


Areas of Research

I hypothesize that viral infection have long-lasting effects on life-long health. My laboratory focusses on characterizing the initiation and longterm maintenance of virus-induced immunity in response to neonatal infection at the mucosal surface.

Participation in university strategic initiatives


Course number Course title Semester
- Immune system Development (Technical University of Denmark) Spring 2023
- Mucosal Immunology (Technical University of Denmark) Fall 2022
BIOR85 Cellular and Molecular Immunology (Lunds Universitet) Spring 2020


Establishment of early life humoral immunity in homeostasis and in the context of an enteric virus infection

Swedish Research Council - Project Grant – 2023-2026

Modulation of anti-viral immunity in neonates by maternal antibody

Danish Medical Research Council - Project Grant 2022-2024

Fine tuning dendritic cell function: Implications of DC-subset regulation in immune cell priming towards cancer

The Swedish Cancer Society - Project Grant 2022-2024

Dendritic cells in the induction of protective versus pathologic immune memory to pulmonary viruses

Swedish Research Council - Virus Call 2021-2023


Associate Professor
Department of Experimental Medicine, Faculty of Medicine
Lunds Universitet
Lund, Sweden

Associate Professor
Department of Health Technology, Faculty of Medicine
Technical University of Denmark (DTU)
Kongens Lyngby, Denmark

Simone Isling Paerregaard
Postdoctoral Fellow


Barbara Chyz
HSC 1663
Email: chyz@ucalgary.ca
Phone: 403.220.4555