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Stress as a modifier of atherosclerosis - Novel mechanistic insights and therapeutic avenues -

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "STRATO" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: Lazarettstrasse 36
city: MUNICH
postcode: 80636

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Germany [DE]
 Total cost 1˙477˙680 €
 EC max contribution 1˙477˙680 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2017-STG
 Funding Scheme ERC-STG
 Starting year 2018
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2018-02-01   to  2023-01-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    DEUTSCHES HERZZENTRUM MUNCHEN DE (MUNICH) coordinator 1˙477˙680.00


 Project objective

Atherosclerosis and its complications such as acute coronary syndromes (myocardial infarction and unstable angina) are leading causes of death in the EU and worldwide. Mental stress is known to be a major trigger for the onset of acute coronary syndromes, even in patients with state-of-the-art medical treatment. How acute mental stress rapidly drives plaque destabilization causing acute coronary syndromes is poorly understood and consequently specific treatment, although urgently needed, is lacking. Mental stress is known to affect the immune system. Leukocytes, the effector cells of the immune system, are main instigators not only of plaque progression, but also of plaque destabilization. We hypothesize that acute mental stress rapidly aggravates plaque inflammation, which renders plaques more vulnerable and prone to rupture. We aim to characterize the impact of stress on plaque inflammation in a mouse model of acute mental stress. We will explore the mechanisms by which acute mental stress drives plaque inflammation. Based on these findings, we aim to provide a novel treatment approach to mitigate stress exacerbated plaque inflammation. Further, we aim to translate our findings to stressed humans. The STRATO study will be carried out in a multidisciplinary approach including basic and clinician scientists, immunologists, and psychosomatic specialists and will provide us with an unprecedented, comprehensive picture of how acute mental stress aggravates atherosclerosis. Our study will fill a gap in mechanistic knowledge and based on this will identify novel therapeutic measures with the aim to reduce acute mental stress related cardiovascular complications.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2017 Hendrik B Sager, Wolfgang Koenig
Acute inflammation and long-term cardiovascular risk: Identifying an unrecognised vulnerable gap
published pages: 1956-1957, ISSN: 2047-4873, DOI: 10.1177/2047487317736869
European Journal of Preventive Cardiology 24/18 2019-10-01
2018 Katharina Knoll, Volkhard Kurowski, Heribert Schunkert, Hendrik B Sager
Management of hypercalcaemia-induced heart failure using mechanical circulatory support
published pages: 784-785, ISSN: 1010-7940, DOI: 10.1093/ejcts/ezy139
European Journal of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery 54/4 2019-10-01
2019 Hendrik B. Sager, Oliver Husser, Sabine Steffens, Karl-Ludwig Laugwitz, Heribert Schunkert, Adnan Kastrati, Gjin Ndrepepa, Thorsten Kessler
Time-of-day at symptom onset was not associated with infarct size and long-term prognosis in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction
published pages: , ISSN: 1479-5876, DOI: 10.1186/s12967-019-1934-z
Journal of Translational Medicine 17/1 2019-10-01

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