Department of Immunology and Allergology


The Clinic of Immunology and Allergology was established on 1 September 2016, but its historical origins date back to the beginning of the 20th century and are related to the Professor Vladas Lašas’s experimental work in the field of allergology and immunology. The first rudiments of the department can be considered the Clinical Immunology and Allergology Sector established in 2002 at the in Pulmonology and Immunology Department (Head B. Šitkauskienė).  

Immunology and Allergology are closely related fields, today one of the fastest growing fields of medical science in the world. With the increase in knowledge of immunology, the field of practical allergology has also changed. The range of diseases diagnosed and treated by allergologists and clinical immunologists has expanded from allergic to immune response failure and autoimmune conditions. With the rapid development of the field of transplantation and the increase in the number of transplants, the contribution of specialists of this competence to solving the issues of adequate immunological examination and immunosuppression is becoming more and more relevant. The deepening of the understanding of mechanisms of damage to immune tissues, the application of the latest immunological research methods both in the field of research and the rapid implementation of them in daily medical practice allows to improve the diagnosis of many diseases, creates preconditions for the improvement of modern immunotherapy methods and wider applicability.
The Department of Immunology and Allergology unites specialists working in both clinical and laboratory immunology and allergology. Its main goal is to ensure the unified development of studies, scientific and clinical activities at the university level in the field of immunology and allergology and to actively participate in the implementation of the mission of the University – to develop a healthy and educated society.

Clinical activity

 The Department of Immunology and Allergology consists of an outpatient branch of Clinical Immunology and Allergology (the Outpatient Diagnostic of Kaunas Clinics has three allergist-clinical immunologist offices and a procedure room), a day hospital for diagnosis and treatment of allergic and immune diseases and an Immunology laboratory.
  Specialists of the clinic advise patients of all age groups suspected of immune pathology, allergic diseases, cooperate with specialists of other clinics in solving problems of diagnosis and immunocorrection of impaired immune response. The unit for allergy and immune disease diagnostics and day inpatient care provides elective health care services including comprehensive allergy diagnostic procedures, allergen provocation and other diagnostic tests. It also performs monitoring of allergic and other impaired immune system responses and immune response corrective treatment. In the Immunology Laboratory, autoantibody, in vitro allergy diagnostic tests, phenotyping of immune cells and other immunological tests are carried out.

Preparation of textbooks, teaching books and other methodological training tools

The latest developed and implemented evidence-based methodologies, training tools:

B. Šitkauskienė, A. Blažienė. Recommendations for the diagnosis and treatment of primary immunodeficiency, 2016.
B. Šitkauskienė, L. Tamašauskienė. What is the primary immunodeficiency and how to live with it, 2016.
B. Šitkauskienė (editor); A. Blažienė, M. Bylaitė – Bučinskienė, A. Chomičienė, J.Staikūnienė, S. Valiukevičienė. Recommendations for Urticaria: Classification, diagnosis and treatment, 2015.

The Department of Immunology and Allergology organises and carries out studies of all stages: undergraduate, post-graduate and doctoral study programmes. The pedagogical staff of the clinic consists of 16 employees: 1 professor, 2 associate professors, 3 lecturers and 8 assistants.

Undergraduate studies

The course in Allergology and Clinical Immunology has been taught to the 4th-year medical students  the Medical Academy since 1999. Since 2010, the introduction of problem-based learning programmes, allergology and clinical immunology has been included in the module “Chest diseases, Allergology and Clinical Immunology and Haematology and Oncology”, taught during the course “Congenital and acquired immune response disorders” (in Lithuanian and English).

As of 2023, the Department of Immunology and Allergology supervises module “Response to Environmental Effects and Structural Homeostasis” (in Lithuanian and English) for the 1st year students of the Faculty of Medicine.

The second year of the Faculty of Medical and Veterinary Genetics students are taught the “Fundamentals of Immunology” course. The third-year students of the Medical Academy Medical and Veterinary Biochemistry are taught the basics of the module “Laboratory Haematology and Immunology” subjects of study “Fundamentals of clinical Immunology‘” and ,”Fundamentals of Laboratory Immunology”.

The ”Immunology” course (in Lithuanian and English) is delivered to the 3rd year students of the Faculty of Pharmacy.

As of 2024, the “Immunology and Immunoprophylaxis” course (in Lithuanian and English) will be delivered to the 2nd year students of the Faculty of Pharmacy.

Postgraduate studies

Residency programme in Allergology and clinical Immunology (duration – 4 years). Its objectives are to acquire knowledge and develop skills enabling to investigate patients with acute and chronic diseases of internal organs and immune system and allergic diseases, to develop and implement an individual patient treatment plan and to provide immediate and urgent care during urgent conditions. Upon completion of this study programme, competencies are acquired that correspond to the qualification standard of the allergologist and clinical immunologist speciality.
The clinic organises postgraduate training courses every year.

Doctoral studies

Doctoral programmes:

  • The aim of this programme is to systematise and deepen knowledge about the most common form of immune response disorder – increased immune sensitivity (allergy), its mechanisms, their significance for the development, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of allergic diseases, to present the scientific achievements and prospects of allergology, their application for the diagnosis and treatment of diseases.
  • Clinical immunology. The aim of the programme is to systematise and deepen knowledge of normal and impaired immune response, immune aspects of pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment of diseases.

The priority of scientific research is multidisciplinary projects aimed at evaluating new aspects of the development of chronic diseases in order to deepen knowledge of the mechanisms of immune response. Currently, the research carried out in the department allows to analyse the correlation of immunological changes of the respiratory tract inflammation caused by the allergen with the expression of symptoms and clinical course, taking into account different phenotypes of the disease; the peculiarities of immune response during tumour diseases and in case of immunodeficiency are studied. This creates the preconditions for identifying new markers and molecules that are significant in the development of diseases; this knowledge helps to fill gaps in the understanding of pathogenesis of various diseases and extends the search for new diagnostic and treatment possibilities.

Scientific papers by allergologists and clinical immunologists, scientific articles are published in high-citation journals of the Institute of Scientific information (ISI), such as the American Journal of Respiratory Cellular and Molecular Biology, Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, the New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of Investigative Allergology and Clinical Immunology The results of the research are presented in the annual congresses of the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI), the European Respiratory Society (ERS) Clinical Allergology and Immunology, the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAI) and the World Allergy Organization (WAO).

Applied clinical trials are conducted in accordance with the rules of good clinical practice. Clinical trials being carried out:

  • A multi-centre, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomised study to evaluate AllerT, the efficacy and tolerability of similar overlapping peptides from any combination of v 1 in adults with allergic rhinitis/rhinoconjunctivitis caused by birch pollen.
  • A multi-centre, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical study evaluated the efficacy and safety of specific immunotherapy with an aluminium hydroxide adsorbed allergen for the house dust mite (Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus) in patients with allergic bronchial asthma and allergic rhinitis or rhinoconjunctivitis.
  • Inclusion of patients with primary immunodeficiency and treated patients in the primary Immunodeficiency Centre of Kaunas Clinics in the European Immunodeficiency Society (ESID) register.

Since 2005, LSMU has been the co-operation centre of the European Union’s 6th Framework Programme project GA2LEN (Global Allergy and asthma European Network).
The Department has a primary Immunodeficiency Centre, which is a member of the Jeffrey Modell Foundation(since 2012), a member of J Project (since 2016).

The long-term cooperation with European scientific centres, active participation in the activities of international organisations, allows not only to acquire new knowledge in the fields of allergology and immunology, but also to implement the latest methods of diagnosis and treatment of allergic and immune diseases, to modernise training and develop scientific work and create preconditions for the further successful development in this field of medicine.

Department of Immunology and Allergology
Prof. Brigita Gradauskienė
Head of the Immunology and Allergology Department
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