Immunology Seminar: Eliisa Kekäläinen


December 5, 2023    
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Immunology Seminar: Eliisa Kekäläinen

December 5th at 14:00
Virtual event

Eliisa Kekäläinen, Translational Immunology Research Program, University of Helsinki & HUS Diagnostic Center, Helsinki University Hospital
The thymus, thymopoiesis, and thymic pathologies – relevant only in rare diseases?
Host: Riitta Lahesmaa ( )

Register latest Dec 4th at

Immunology seminar series is jointly organised by the Finnish Society for Immunology, InFLAMES Flagship and Turku Bioscience. For further information contact Anne Lahdenperä  ( ) or Riitta Lahesmaa ( ), University of Turku.


Eliisa Kekäläinen, M.D. Ph.D., research group is based at the University of Helsinki, and is part of Translational Immunology Research Program. Eliisa Kekäläinen has wide interest in immunodeficiency diagnostics and immunological tolerance. Her research focuses especially on the primary immunological organ the thymus. She is interested in how e.g. common viral infections and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation affect thymus function, how they could better measure thymopoiesis in clinical situations, and what kind of pathological processes in the thymus lead to immunodysregulation in autoimmune diseases such as myasthenia gravis. Eliisa Kekäläinen works also at the HUS Diagnostic Center Clinical Microbiology and Immunology (Helsinki University Hospital) where she mainly focuses on immunodeficiency laboratory diagnostics.


Selected publications

Ilonen I, Kytö V, Kekäläinen E. Health Consequences of Thymus Removal in Adults. N Engl J Med. 2023 Nov 2;389(18):1725-1726. doi: 10.1056/NEJMc2310640. PMID: 37913515.

Myllynen C, Sarkkinen J, Atula S, Tienari P, Kekäläinen E, Laakso SM. A skewed ratio of free light chains is more common in patients with late-onset than early-onset myasthenia gravis. Immunol Lett. 2023 Aug;260:81-88. doi: 10.1016/j.imlet.2023.07.001. Epub 2023 Jul 4. PMID: 37414259.

Sarkkinen J, Dunkel J, Tuulasvaara A, Huuskonen A, Atula S, Kekäläinen E, Laakso SM. Ectopic germinal centers in the thymus accurately predict prognosis of myasthenia gravis after thymectomy. Mod Pathol. 2022 Sep;35(9):1168-1174. doi: 10.1038/s41379-022-01070-2. Epub 2022 Mar 25. PMID: 35338262; PMCID: PMC9424113.

Hetemäki I, Kaustio M, Kinnunen M, Heikkilä N, Keskitalo S, …,  Otava U, Syrjänen J, Saarela J, Varjosalo M, Kekäläinen E. Loss-of-function mutation in IKZF2 leads to immunodeficiency with dysregulated germinal center reactions and reduction of MAIT cells. Sci Immunol. 2021 Nov 26;6(65):eabe3454. doi: 10.1126/sciimmunol.abe3454. Epub 2021 Nov 26. PMID: 34826260.14