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George Bertsias

George Bertsias

Associate Professor in Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology, Univ. of Crete
Email address
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+30-2810-394628 (laboratory)
+30-2810-394635 (office)

The Laboratory of Rheumatology, Autoimmunity and Inflammation–Systemic Autoimmunity and Gene Regulation Group explores cellular and molecular pathways implicated in dysregulated immune and inflammatory responses, tissue injury and repair in the context of autoimmune diseases using systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) as a prototype disorder. Our Group works together with the Clinical Research Unit at the University Hospital and has access to well-characterized, longitudinal patient cohorts and tissue biorepositories. Using both human samples and animal models of autoimmunity, we investigate innate and adaptive immune responses under the premise that they share common effector pathways for tissue injury.

The laboratory explores genetic and epigenetic mechanisms underlying functional perturbations in specific immune cell types in order to delineate the genomic/epigenetic basis of specific endotypes (such as gender bias, disease progression) and to identify novel therapies, biomarkers for diagnosis and response to existing biological agents. We participate in the Graduate Programs of Molecular Biology and Biomedicine and Molecular Basis of Human Disease, as well as in local and international consortia in the context of competitive translational research projects.

Georgakis S, Gkirtzimanaki K, Papadaki G, Gakiopoulou H, Drakos E, Eloranta ML, Makridakis M, Kontostathi G, Zoidakis J, Baira E, Rönnblom L, Boumpas DT, Sidiropoulos P, Verginis P, Bertsias G. (2021) NETs decorated with bioactive IL-33 infiltrate inflamed tissues and induce IFN-α production in patients with SLE. JCI Insight. 6: e147671.

Adamichou C, Genitsaridi I, Nikolopoulos D, Nikoloudaki M, Repa A, Bortoluzzi A, Fanouriakis A, Sidiropoulos P, Boumpas DT, Bertsias GK. (2021) Lupus or not? SLE Risk Probability Index (SLERPI): a simple, clinician-friendly machine learning-based model to assist the diagnosis of systemic lupus erythematosus. Ann Rheum Dis. 80: 758-766.

Ntasis VF, Panousis NI, Tektonidou MG, Dermitzakis ET, Boumpas DT, Bertsias GK, Nikolaou C. (2020) Extensive fragmentation and re-organization of transcription in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. Sci Rep. 10:16648.

Panousis NI, Bertsias GK, Ongen H, Gergianaki I, Tektonidou MG, Trachana M, Romano-Palumbo L, Bielser D, Howald C, Pamfil C, Fanouriakis A, Kosmara D, Repa A, Sidiropoulos P, Dermitzakis ET, Boumpas DT. (2019) Combined genetic and transcriptome analysis of patients with SLE: distinct, targetable signatures for susceptibility and severity. Ann Rheum Dis. 78: 1079-1089.

Krasoudaki E, Banos A, Stagakis E, Loupasakis K, Drakos E, Sinatkas V, Zampoulaki A, Papagianni A, Iliopoulos D, Boumpas DT, Bertsias GK. (2016) Micro-RNA analysis of renal biopsies in human lupus nephritis demonstrates up-regulated miR-422a driving reduction of kallikrein-related peptidase 4. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 31:1676-86.

Kirino Y, Bertsias G, Ishigatsubo Y, Mizuki N, Tugal-Tutkun I, Seyahi E, Ozyazgan Y, Sacli FS, Erer B, Inoko H, Emrence Z, Cakar A, Abaci N, Ustek D, Satorius C, Ueda A, Takeno M, Kim Y, Wood GM, Ombrello MJ, Meguro A, Gul A, Remmers EF, Kastner DL. (2013) Genome-wide association analysis identifies new susceptibility loci for Behcet's disease and epistasis between HLA-B*51 and ERAP1. Nat Genet. 45:202-7.

Garantziotis P, Nikolakis D, Doumas S, Frangou E, Sentis G, Filia A, Fanouriakis A, Bertsias G, Boumpas DT (2022) Molecular Taxonomy of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Through Data-Driven Patient Stratification: Molecular Endotypes and Cluster-Tailored Drugs. Front Immunol. 13: 860726.

Kostopoulou M, Ugarte-Gil MF, Pons-Estel B, van Vollenhoven RF, Bertsias G (2022). The association between lupus serology and disease outcomes: A systematic literature review to inform the treat-to-target approach in systemic lupus erythematosus. Lupus. 31(3): 307-318.

Papanikolaou S, Bertsias GK, Nikolaou C (2021). Extensive Changes in Transcription Dynamics Reflected on Alternative Splicing Events in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Patients. Genes (Basel). 12(8): 1260.

Gkirtzimanaki K, Kabrani E, Nikoleri D, Polyzos A, Blanas A, Sidiropoulos P, Makrigiannakis A, Bertsias G, Boumpas DT, Verginis P (2018). IFNα Impairs Autophagic Degradation of mtDNA Promoting Autoreactivity of SLE Monocytes in a STING-Dependent Fashion. Cell Rep. 25(4): 921-933.e5.

Stathopoulou C, Nikoleri D, Bertsias G (2019). Immunometabolism: an overview and therapeutic prospects in autoimmune diseases. Immunotherapy. 11(9): 813-829.

Antypa D, Simos NJ, Kavroulakis E, Bertsias G, Fanouriakis A, Sidiropoulos P, Boumpas D, Papadaki E (2021). Anxiety and depression severity in neuropsychiatric SLE are associated with perfusion and functional connectivity changes of the frontolimbic neural circuit: a resting-state f(unctional) MRI study. Lupus Sci Med. 8(1): e000473.

Ruiz-Irastorza G, Bertsias G (2020). Treating systemic lupus erythematosus in the 21st century: new drugs and new perspectives on old drugs. Rheumatology (Oxford). 59(Suppl5): v69-v81.

Fanouriakis A, Kostopoulou M, Cheema K, Anders HJ, Aringer M, Bajema I, Boletis J, Frangou E, Houssiau FA, Hollis J, Karras A, Marchiori F, Marks SD, Moroni G, Mosca M, Parodis I, Praga M, Schneider M, Smolen JS, Tesar V, Trachana M, van Vollenhoven RF, Voskuyl AE, Teng YKO, van Leew B, Bertsias G, Jayne D, Boumpas DT (2020). 2019 Update of the Joint European League Against Rheumatism and European Renal Association-European Dialysis and Transplant Association (EULAR/ERA-EDTA) recommendations for the management of lupus nephritis. Ann Rheum Dis. 79(6):713-723.

Keywords (Tagged under): inflammation, autoimmunity, genomics, cytokines