Anja Meissner

Senior Lecturer, PhD, Dipl. Troph.

Associate professor, Senior lecturer

Research areas and keywords


  • cardiovascular Disease, hypertension, heart failure, stroke, sphingosine-1-phosphate signaling, inflammation, neurodegeneration


Cardiovascular disease such as heart attack, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease, is the number-one health problem in the world. Despite remarkable progress in diagnosis and prevention, cardiovascular diseases cause disability and death at an astounding rate. The best opportunities to develop and implement new strategies for preventing and treating cardiovascular disease lies in the understanding of its underlying mechanisms. Our research aims to isolate novel therapeutic targets that effectively prevent and most importantly, also reverse complications mediated by cardiovascular risk factors such as hypertension.

Specifically, we are interested in sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) signaling and its role in the regulation of the vascular and the immune system. Our earlier work provides ample evidence that the S1P signaling axis plays a key role in immune cell recruitment, cytokine production and vascular tone regulation in experimental hypertension, heart failure and stroke. We for instance, showed an essential contribution of the S1P signaling axis to hypertension by identifying hematopoietic SphK2 as key enzyme responsible for disease-associated S1P plasma elevation that governs T-cell egress from secondary lymphoid tissue and thus, controls BP. On the other hand, S1P signaling involves in heart-failure and stroke associated cerebrovascular alterations that link to cerebral blood flow deficits and neurodegeneration, including memory deficits. Interestingly, targeting S1P signaling pathways specific to the different diseases improve disease outcome.

Highlighted research outputs

Darcy Lidington, Jessica C. Fares, Franziska E. Uhl, Danny D. Dinh, Jeffrey T. Kroetsch, Meghan Sauvé, Firhan A. Malik, Frank Matthes, Lotte Vanherle, Arman Adel, Abdul Momen, Hangjun Zhang, Roozbeh Aschar-Sobbi, Warren D. Foltz, Hoyee Wan, Manabu Sumiyoshi, R. Loch Macdonald, Mansoor Husain, Peter H. Backx, Scott P. Heximer & 2 others, Anja Meissner & Steffen Sebastian Bolz, 2019, In: JACC: Basic to Translational Science. 4, 8, p. 940-958 19 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Nicholas Don-Doncow, Lotte Vanherle, Yun Zhang & Anja Meissner, 2019 Jan 28, In: International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 20, 3, p. 1-14 537.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Nicholas Don-Doncow, Yun Zhang, Hana Matuskova & Anja Meissner, 2019, In: British Journal of Pharmacology. 176, 12, p. 1989-2001

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Anja Meissner, Francesc Miro, Francesc Jimenez-Altayo, Andres Jurado, Elisabet Vila & Anna M. Planas, 2017 Jan 12, In: Cardiovascular Research. 113, 2, p. 123-133

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Anja Meissner, 2016 May 14, In: Cerebrovascular Diseases. 42, 3-4, p. 255-262

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Anja Meissner, Naomi P. Visanji, M. Abdul Momen, Rui Feng, Beverly M. Francis, Steffen Sebastian Bolz & Lili-Naz Hazrati, 2015 May 6, In: Journal of the American Heart Association. 4, e001920.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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