Erik Melén

Professor/specialist physician

About me

Current positions

  • Professor of Pediatrics, Department of Clinical Sciences and Education Södersjukhuset
  • Pediatric allergist, Sachs’ Children’s Hospital
  • PI of the BAMSE study

Research description

Respiratory and allergic diseases in children; role of genetic and environmental factors

My research projects aim to advance the understanding about the complex interplay between genetic and environmental factors involved in lung growth, respiratory and allergic diseases in children. The projects are primarily based on a Swedish birth cohort, BAMSE that allows for unique investigation of lung function, respiratory and allergic diseases in a large number of children up to 24 years. Detailed information about perinatal events, environmental exposures such as air pollution and tobacco smoke exposure from birth and onwards has been collected. 

In our ongoing genetics projects, genome-wide approaches are primarily used (GWAS, global methylation analyses and RNA sequencing / microarray approaches) together with detailed clinical and epidemiological data. Extensive national and international collaboration is established (e.g. through the GABRIEL, EAGLE and MeDALL projects). Close collaboration with several colleagues within the Centre for Allergy Network as well as Sachs Children’s and Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospitals is ongoing. From this translational platform for advanced studies using clinical and epidemiological data sets, we are performing projects that will generate exciting new information in areas that have been little explored so far. For example, the long-term consequence of preterm birth on lung function in young adulthood; identification of subgroups of the population that are particularly vulnerable to air pollution exposures; clarification of new genetic mechanisms for disease development.


Research group (Pediatric Pulmonology & Genetics Group)

  • Olena Gruzieva, MD, researcher
  • Jenny Hallberg, PhD, researcher
  • Simon Kebede Merid, Bioinformatician, PhD student
  • Ashish Kumar, Bioinformatician / Statistician
  • Anand Andiappan, PhD (guest researcher)
  • Björn Lundberg, MD, PhD student
  • Maura Kere, MD student


  • ERC
  • The Swedish Heart-Lung Foundation
  • VR
  • ALF
  • SFO Epidemiology, KI


  • 2019: Professor of Pediatrics
  • 2017: Specialist in Pediatric allergy
  • 2012: Associate Professor of Epidemiology
  • 2012: Specialist in Pediatrics
  • 2009-10: Postdoc, Channing Laboratory, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA
  • 2006: PhD, Karolinska Institutet (Epidemiology). Title: Genetic studies on childhood asthma and allergy - role of interactions
  • 2005: License to practice (certified by the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare)
  • 2001: MD, University of Uppsala, Sweden

Academic honours, awards and prizes

  • Prins Daniel's young investigator award from The Swedish Heart-Lung Foundation 2015 (link here)
  • Major research award from The Swedish Association For Allergology 2016 (link here)
  • PhARF / EAACI Allergy Award 2017
  • ERC Starting grant 2017
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