Uta Erdbrügger, MD Lab


Associate Professor, Nephrology


UVA Division of Nephrology
PO Box 800133
Charlottesville, VA 22908
Telephone: 434-971-8888
Email: ue2u@hscmail.mcc.virginia.edu




  • 1996 MD degree, Medical School at Free University, Berlin, Germany
  • 1997 Internship: Franz Volhard Klinik Buch, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany
  • 1998 Residency Internal Medicine: Tulane University, Louisiana, USA
  • 2001 Fellowship in Nephrology: University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, USA
  • 2005 Senior Residency Hannover Medical School, Germany
  • 2009 Assistant Professor of Medicine, University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, USA
  • 2017 Associate Professor of Medicine, University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, USA


  • NIH 1k23HL12610-01A1 (Circulating and Urinary Microparticles as Markers of End-organ Damage in Hypertension)


Extracellular vesicles as novel bio-markers and bio-activators in HTN and Kidney disease.


The Erdbrügger Lab is interested in studying the fascinating role of extracellular vesicles (EVs) as novel bio-markers and bio-activators in kidney disease and high blood pressure. EVs are a very heterogeneous group of small vesicles that can derive from all cells in the body either by secretion or blebbing of cell membranes. Initially thought of as “cell trash,” EVs are emerging as novel communicators in health and disease. Because of their small size (submicron) and heterogeneous nature, our second research focus is the optimization of EV isolation and characterization. See links to our publications for more details.

  • UVA Pinn Lab
  • UVA Pinn Lab
  • UVA Pinn Lab


  1. Görgens A, Bremer M, Ferrer-Tur R, Murke F, Tertel T, Horn PA, Thalmann S, Welsh JA, Probst C, Guerin C, Boulanger CM, Jones JC, Hanenberg H, Erdbrügger U, Lannigan J, Ricklefs FL, El-Andaloussi S, Giebel B. Optimisation of imaging flow cytometry for the analysis of single extracellular vesicles by using fluorescence-tagged vesicles as biological reference material. J Extracell Vesicles. 2019;8(1):1587567.
  2. Eichner NZM, Gilbertson NM, Musante L, La Salvia S, Weltman A, Erdbrügger U, Malin SK. An Oral Glucose Load Decreases Postprandial Extracellular Vesicles in Obese Adults with and without Prediabetes. Nutrients. 2019 Mar 8;11(3).
  3. C Théry, KW Witwer, et al. “Minimal information for studies of extracellular vesicles 2018 (MISEV2018): a position statement of the International Society for Extracellular Vesicles and update of the MISEV2014 guidelines” Journal of Extracellular Vesicles 2018,  7 (1), 1535750
  4. Erdbrügger U, Le TH. Extracellular vesicles as a novel diagnostic and research tool for patients with HTN and kidney disease. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2019 Sep 1;317(3):F641-F647. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00071.2019. Epub 2019 Jul 17. PubMed PMID: 31313949; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6766633.
  5. Intagliata NM, Davis JPE, Lafond J, Erdbruegger U, Greenberg CS, Northup PG, Caldwell SH.Acute kidney injury is associated with low factor XIII in decompensated cirrhosis. Dig Liver Dis. 2019 Apr 6; doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2019.03.011.[Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 30967339.
  6. Görgens A, Bremer M, Ferrer-Tur R, Murke F, Tertel T, Horn PA, Thalmann S, Welsh JA, Probst C, Guerin C, Boulanger CM, Jones JC, Hanenberg H, Erdbrügger U, Lannigan J, Ricklefs FL, El-Andaloussi S, Giebel B.Optimisation of imaging flow cytometry for the analysis of single extracellular vesicles by using fluorescence-tagged vesicles as biological reference material. J Extracell Vesicles. 2019;8(1):1587567. doi: 10.1080/20013078.2019.1587567. eCollection 2019. PubMed PMID: 30949308; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6442110.
  7. Erdbrügger U, Kielstein JT, Westman K, Ma JZ, Xin W, Bode-Böger SM, Segelmark M, Rasmussen N, De Groot K.Higher levels of SDMA and not ADMA are associated with poorer survival of trial patients with systemic ANCA-associated vasculitis. Eur J Rheumatol.2018 Sep;5(3):153-159. doi: 10.5152/eurjrheum.2018.17119. Epub 2018 Apr 2. PubMed PMID: 30071927; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6116852.
  8. Eichner NZM, Erdbrügger U, Malin SK. Extracellular Vesicles: A Novel Target for Exercise-Mediated Reductions in Type 2 Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease Risk. J Diabetes Res. 2018;2018:7807245. doi: 10.1155/2018/7807245. eCollection 2018. Review. PubMed PMID: 30018986; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6029462.
  9. Eichner NZM, Gilbertson NM, Gaitan JM, Heiston EM, Musante L, LaSalvia S, Weltman A, Erdbrügger U, Malin SK.Low cardiorespiratory fitness is associated with higher extracellular vesicle counts in obese adults. Physiol Rep. 2018 May;6(10):e13701. doi: 10.14814/phy2.13701. PubMed PMID: 29845758; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5974724.
  10. Lannigan J, Erdbruegger U. Imaging flow cytometry for the characterization of extracellular vesicles. Methods.2017 Jan 1;112:55-67.doi: 10.1016/j.ymeth.2016.09.018. Epub 2016 Oct 6. PubMed PMID: 27721015.
  11. Han CZ, Juncadella IJ, Kinchen JM, Buckley MW, Klibanov AL, Dryden K, Onengut-Gumuscu S, Erdbrügger U, Turner SD, Shim YM, Tung KS, Ravichandran KS.Macrophages redirect phagocytosis by non-professional phagocytes and influence inflammation. Nature.2016 Nov 24;539(7630):570-574. doi: 10.1038/nature20141. Epub 2016 Nov 7. PubMed PMID: 27820945; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5799085.
  12. Erdbrügger U, Lannigan J.Analytical challenges of extracellular vesicle detection: A comparison of different techniques. Cytometry A. 2016 Feb;89(2):123-34. doi: 10.1002/cyto.a.22795. Epub 2015 Dec 9. Review. PubMed PMID: 26651033.
  13. Erdbrügger U, Le TH. Extracellular Vesicles in Renal Diseases: More than Novel Biomarkers?. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2016 Jan;27(1):12-26. doi: 10.1681/ASN.2015010074. Epub 2015 Aug 6. Review. PubMed PMID: 26251351; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4696584.
  14. Erdbrügger U, Scheffner I, Mengel M, Schwarz A, Haller H, Gwinner W. Long-term impact of CMV infection on allografts and on patient survival in renal transplant patients with protocol biopsies. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2015 Dec 1;309(11):F925-32. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00317.2015. Epub 2015 Sep 9. PubMed PMID: 26354882.
  15. Burger D, Erdbrügger U, Burns KD. Re: Microparticles: markers and mediators of sepsis-induced microvascular dysfunction, immunosuppression, and AKI. Kidney Int. 2015 Oct;88(4):915. doi: 10.1038/ki.2015.208. PubMed PMID: 26422626.
  16. Erdbrügger U, Rudy CK, Etter ME, Dryden KA, Yeager M, Klibanov AL, Lannigan J. Imaging flow cytometry elucidates limitations of microparticle analysis by conventional flow cytometry. Cytometry A. 2014 Sep;85(9):756-70. doi: 10.1002/cyto.a.22494. Epub 2014 Jun 5. PubMed PMID: 24903900.
  17. Woywodt A, Gerdes S, Ahl B, Erdbruegger U, Haubitz M, Weissenborn K. Circulating endothelial cells and stroke: influence of stroke subtypes and changes during the course of disease. J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis. 2012 Aug;21(6):452-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jstrokecerebrovasdis.2010.11.003. PubMed PMID: 21852153.
  18. Erdbruegger U, Scheffner I, Mengel M, Schwarz A, Verhagen W, Haller H, Gwinner W. Impact of CMV infection on acute rejection and long-term renal allograft function: a systematic analysis in patients with protocol biopsies and indicated biopsies. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2012 Jan;27(1):435-43. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfr306. Epub 2011 Jun 28. PubMed PMID: 21712490.
  19. Erdbrügger U, de Groot K. [Is methotrexate nephrotoxic? Dose-dependency, comorbidities and comedication]. Z Rheumatol. 2011 Sep;70(7):549-52. doi: 10.1007/s00393-011-0830-6. Review. PubMed PMID: 21735288.
  20. Dey-Hazra E, Hertel B, Kirsch T, Woywodt A, Lovric S, Haller H, Haubitz M, Erdbruegger U. Detection of circulating microparticles by flow cytometry: influence of centrifugation, filtration of buffer, and freezing. Vasc Health Risk Manag. 2010 Dec 6;6:1125-33. doi: 10.2147/VHRM.S13236. PubMed PMID: 21191433; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3004516.
  21. Erdbruegger U, Dhaygude A, Haubitz M, Woywodt A. Circulating endothelial cells: markers and mediators of vascular damage. Curr Stem Cell Res Ther. 2010 Dec;5(4):294-302. Review. PubMed PMID: 20528750.
  22. Kirsch T, Woywodt A, Klose J, Wyss K, Beese M, Erdbruegger U, Grossheim M, Haller H, Haubitz M. Endothelial-derived thrombospondin-1 promotes macrophage recruitment and apoptotic cell clearance. J Cell Mol Med. 2010 Jul;14(7):1922-34. doi: 10.1111/j.1582-4934.2009.00799.x. Epub 2009 Jun 5. PubMed PMID: 19508384; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3823274.
  23. Dhaygude A, Erdbruegger U, Haubitz M, Woywodt A. ANCA-associated vasculitis: pathogenesis, novel markers of the disease and emerging therapies. Minerva Urol Nefrol. 2009 Dec;61(4):411-37. Review. PubMed PMID: 19816393.
  24. Lovric S, Erdbruegger U, Kümpers P, Woywodt A, Koenecke C, Wedemeyer H, Haller H, Haubitz M. Rituximab as rescue therapy in anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic antibody-associated vasculitis: a single-centre experience with 15 patients. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2009 Jan;24(1):179-85. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfn430. Epub 2008 Aug 6. PubMed PMID: 18685144.
  25. Erdbruegger U, Grossheim M, Hertel B, Wyss K, Kirsch T, Woywodt A, Haller H, Haubitz M. Diagnostic role of endothelial microparticles in vasculitis. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2008 Dec;47(12):1820-5. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/ken373. Epub 2008 Oct 16. PubMed PMID: 18927191.
  26. Gwinner W, Hinzmann K, Erdbruegger U, Scheffner I, Broecker V, Vaske B, Kreipe H, Haller H, Schwarz A, Mengel M. Acute tubular injury in protocol biopsies of renal grafts: prevalence, associated factors and effect on long-term function. Am J Transplant. 2008 Aug;8(8):1684-93. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-6143.2008.02293.x. Epub 2008 Jun 28. PubMed PMID: 18557733.
  27. Kümpers P, Erdbrügger U, Grossheim M, Meyer GP, Hiss M, Gwinner W, Haller H, Haubitz M. Endothelial microparticles as a diagnostic aid in Churg-Strauss vasculitis-induced cardiomyopathy. Clin Exp Rheumatol. 2008 May-Jun;26(3 Suppl 49):S86-9. PubMed PMID: 18799061.
  28. Grundmann M, Woywodt A, Kirsch T, Hollwitz B, Oehler K, Erdbruegger U, Haller H, Haubitz M. Circulating endothelial cells: a marker of vascular damage in patients with preeclampsia. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2008 Mar;198(3):317.e1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2007.09.049. Epub 2008 Feb 20. PubMed PMID: 18068139.
  29. Gwinner W, Erdbruegger U, Mengel M, Hafer C, Kittner J, Witte T, Voelker B, Haller H. Scleroderma-like acute renal crisis in a patient with scleromyxedema. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2007 Jul;22(7):2063-7. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfm103. Epub 2007 Mar 26. Review. PubMed PMID: 17389621.
  30. Kirsch T, Woywodt A, Beese M, Wyss K, Park JK, Erdbruegger U, Hertel B, Haller H, Haubitz M. Engulfment of apoptotic cells by microvascular endothelial cells induces proinflammatory responses. Blood. 2007 Apr 1;109(7):2854-62. doi: 10.1182/blood-2006-06-026187. PubMed PMID: 17119109.
  31. Erdbruegger U, Haubitz M, Woywodt A. Circulating endothelial cells: a novel marker of endothelial damage. Clin Chim Acta. 2006 Nov;373(1-2):17-26. doi: 10.1016/j.cca.2006.05.016. Epub 2006 May 16. Review. PubMed PMID: 16836991.
  32. Erdbruegger U, Woywodt A, Kirsch T, Haller H, Haubitz M. Circulating endothelial cells as a prognostic marker in thrombotic microangiopathy. Am J Kidney Dis. 2006 Oct;48(4):564-70. doi: 10.1053/j.ajkd.2006.06.013. PubMed PMID: 16997052.
  33. Erdbrügger U, Hellmark T, Bunch DO, Alcorta DA, Jennette JC, Falk RJ, Nachman PH. Mapping of myeloperoxidase epitopes recognized by MPO-ANCA using human-mouse MPO chimers. Kidney Int. 2006 May;69(10):1799-805. doi: 10.1038/sj.ki.5000354. PubMed PMID: 16557221.
  34. Woywodt A, Erdbruegger U, Haubitz M. Circulating endothelial cells and endothelial progenitor cells after angioplasty: news from the endothelial rescue squad. J Thromb Haemost. 2006 May;4(5):976-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1538-7836.2006.01920.x. PubMed PMID: 16689746.
  35. Woywodt A, Blann AD, Kirsch T, Erdbruegger U, Banzet N, Haubitz M, Dignat-George F. Isolation and enumeration of circulating endothelial cells by immunomagnetic isolation: proposal of a definition and a consensus protocol. J Thromb Haemost. 2006 Mar;4(3):671-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1538-7836.2006.01794.x. PubMed PMID: 16460450.
  36. Woywodt A, Goldberg C, Kirsch T, de Groot K, Erdbruegger U, Haller H, Haubitz M. Circulating endothelial cells in relapse and limited granulomatous disease due to ANCA associated vasculitis. Ann Rheum Dis. 2006 Feb;65(2):164-8. doi: 10.1136/ard.2005.040980. Epub 2005 Sep 8. PubMed PMID: 16150786; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1798015.
  37. Erdbruegger U, Thomas DB, Hladik JA. Quiz page. Tubular epithelial injury consistent with osmotic nephrosis. Am J Kidney Dis. 2004 Aug;44(2):A45, e1. PubMed PMID: 15264204.
  38. Erdbruegger U. New insights into mechanism of immune-mediated glomerular diseases. Drug Discovery Today: Disease Mechanisms Review. 2004; 1:73-81.
  39. Wassmuth R, Lentzsch S, Erdbruegger U, Schulz-Menger J, Doerken B, Dietz R, Friedrich MG. Subclinical cardiotoxic effects of anthracyclines as assessed by magnetic resonance imaging-a pilot study. Am Heart J. 2001 Jun;141(6):1007-13. doi: 10.1067/mhj.2001.115436. PubMed PMID: 11376317.