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Professor Stefan Barth MSc (Bonn) PhD (Bonn) DMSc (Cologne)

Medical Biotechnology & Immunotherapy Research Unit

Selected publications  |  Contact details  |  Group members  |  Collaborations

Stefan Barth

South African Research Chair in Cancer Biotechnology; Division of Chemical & Systems Biology; Department of Integrative Biomedical Sciences Member; Member and Executive Director, Medical Biotechnology and Immunotherapy Unit; Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town.

The major aim of our research is the use of medical biotechnology methods including antibody technologies, protein engineering & expression, to develop and evaluate knowledge-based innovative recombinant immunodiagnostics and therapeutics. The main characteristics of these novel agents are: a) disease-specific activities, b) reduced unspecific side effects, and c) reduced immunogenicity.

Novel methods for selection of antibodies are developed in close collaboration with a) Dr. Mehmet K. Tur, Experimental Pathology and Immunotherapy, Institute for Pathology, University Hospital Giessen and Marburg, Germany, b) Dr Peter Duncan, Afrobodies, South Africa.

Novel fusion proteins will be designed using advanced supercomputing tools to model dynamic interactions of proteins, in close collaboration with Prof. Dr. Paolo Carloni, Institute for Advanced Simulation, Forschungszentrum Jülich, Germany.  Recombinant fusion proteins are mainly expressed in bacterial or mammalian cells and subsequently characterized in experimental settings, both in vitro on cell lines or primary material of patients and in vivo in transgenic/tumor-bearing mouse models.


Selected recent publications:

Thurner L., Hartmann S., Bewarder M., Fadle N., Regitz E., Körbel C., Schormann C., Quiroga N., Kemele M., Klapper W., Rosenwald A., Trümper L., Bohle R.M., Nimmesgern A., Laschke M.W., Barth S., Kubuschock B., Kaddu-Mulindwa D., Hansmann M.L., Pöschel V., Held G., Murawski N., Stilgenbauer S., Neumann F., Preuss K.D., Pfreundschuh M. – Identification of an atypically posttranslational modified autoantigen as the target of B-cell receptors from ABC-type diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. Haematologica: early view (2020), doi: 10.3324/haematol.2019.241653.

Hussain A.F., Kampmeier F., Meinhold-Heerlein I., Barth S. – One step site-specific antibody fragment conjugation using SNAP tag technology. Nature Protocols 14: 3101-3125 (2019), doi: 10.1038/s41596-019-0214-y.

Dhandapani R., Arokiaraj C.M., Taberner F., Raja S., Portulano C., Franciosa F., Maffei M., Hussain A.F., de Castro Reis F., Reymond L., Perlas E., Barth S., Johnsson K., Lechner S.G., Heppenstall P.A. – Control of mechanical pain hypersensitivity in mice through ligand-targeted photoablation of TrkB positive sensory neurons. Nature Commun 9(1): 1640 (2018), doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-04049-3.

Amoury M., Mladenov R., Nachreiner T., Pham A.T., Hristodorov D., Di Fiore S., Helfrich W., Pardo A., Fey G., Thepen T., Kiessling F., Kolberg K., Barth S. - A novel approach for targeted elimination of CSPG4-positive triple negative breast cancer using a MAP-tau based fusion protein. Int J Cancer 139(4): 916-24 (2016). PMID: 27037627, doi: 10.1002/ijc.30119.

Woitok M., Klose D., Niesen J., Richter W., Abbas M., Hussain A., Stein C., Bialon M., Püttmann C., Fischer R., Barth S.*, Kolberg K.* – The efficient elimination of solid tumor cells by EGFR- and Her2-specific scFv-SNAP fusion proteins conjugated to benzylguanine-modified auristatin F. Cancer Letters 381(2): 323-30 (2016). PMID: 27502168, doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2016.08.003.

Contact details:

Department of Integrative Biomedical Sciences
Wernher & Beit North level 3
Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine
Faculty of Health Sciences, UCT
Anzio Road
Observatory 7925
South Africa

Tel: +27 21 406 6938 (office) 
Email: stefan.barth@uct.ac.za

Alternate sites: 

ResearchGate profile


Group members:

Group members Position
Nyameka Mhlonyelwa-Mona Snr Secretary/Administration 
Dharanidharan Ramamurthy Postdoctoral Fellow
Olusiji Alex Akinrinmade Postdoctoral Fellow
Akiko Suzuki PhD Student
Adebukola Kemi Daramola PhD Student
Anathi Nkayi PhD Student
Dennis Dogbey  PhD Student
Liyabona Mpondo PhD Student
Murithi Bernard Mirianga PhD Student
Natasha Hardcastle PhD Student
Neelakshi Mungra PhD Student
Precious Ndebele PhD Student
Siphelele Sanele Cingo PhD Student
Suresh Madheswaran PhD Student
Suzanne Hippolite Magagoum  PhD Student
Trishana Nundalall PhD Student
Annestacia Marthinus MSc Student
Chardae Friedberg MSc Student
Emmanuel Adebowale Fajemisin  MSc Student
Grace Mayuni MSc Student
Maryam Karaan  MSc Student
Salizwa Thinasithethi Salizwa MSc Student
Takunda Ngwenya MSc Student
Tatenda Bvudzijena MSc Student
Valentine Amanda Shangase MSc Student
Jordan Mbongeni Magagula Intern
Marc Henry Intern
Sizalobuhle Masuku  Intern
Ursula-Claire Andon Intern
Raeesa Lagerdien WIL
Raessa Hassan WIL
Ashley Links WIL
Sherin Nkosi WIL
Inam Makhabana WIL
Ntoliseng Monethi WIL
Yeuko Manganyi WIL



Name, Institution Research Area
Dr. Klaus Pors, University of Bradford, UK Recombinant antibody drug conjugates
Dr. Mehmet K. Tur, UKGM Giessen, Germany Selection of antibodies on human cells/tissue
Dr. Peter Duncan, Afrobodies, South Africa Novel recombinant antibodies
Prof. Andreas Maurer, University of Tübingen, Germany  Recombinant radiobiopharmaceuticals
Prof. Matthias Peipp, University of Kiel, Germany Therapeutically active fusion proteins
Prof. Paolo Carloni, FZ Jülich, Germany Simulation of dynamic protein interactions
South Africa  
Prof. Dirk Lang, UCT, Cape Town Immunofluorescence Imaging
Prof. Frank Brombacher, UCT, Cape Town Biological activity of immunotherapeutic agents in preclinical disease models 
Prof. Roger Hunter, UCT, Cape Town Synthetic BG-modified SNAP substrates
Prof. Ramona Hurdayal, UCT, Cape Town Leishmania mouse models
Prof. Komala Pillay, UCT, Cape Town Access to NHLS FFPE patient sections