Christine Tunkl | World Stroke Organization
Christine  Tunkl

Christine Tunkl


Member Bio

Christine graduated in Medicine at the University of Heidelberg in 2016. After her MD she has been working in the Department of Neurology, University Hospital of Heidelberg, where she focused her clinical and research work on vascular neurology and critical care. She has spent several years on the stroke unit, neuro-intensive care unit and emergency department and provided telestroke services within the regional “FAST” network.

Christine’s early research activities addressed social determinants of health and she wrote her doctoral thesis about “Disparities in health and access to health care among asylum seekers in Germany”. Through exchanges with participants from different countries at the European Stroke Organization Summer School in Helsinki, Christine became aware about the inequities in access to stroke care. Knowing that nowadays we already have the technologies, the knowledge and skills in stroke care – she realized that it’s about making all this accessible to more patients.

In 2020, Christine established a cooperation between the University of Heidelberg and the Nepal Stroke Association. With the guidance from Professor Werner Hacke and the Angels‘ Initiative this quickly turned into a successful nationwide project (, supported by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and financed by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the Else Kröner-Fresenius foundation (EKFS). The project aims to improve quality of stroke care by establishing stroke-ready hospitals in all provinces of Nepal, to implement quality monitoring, to raise public awareness on stroke – and last but not least: To provide evidence-based solutions for implementation of stroke care in the resource-limited health care systems.

The project is still ongoing, and the first results are in process of publication and are presented on the World Stroke Congress 2022.

Christine’s further postdoctoral research activities addressed the role of gut microbioma in ischemic stroke and the prediction of outcome in small-vessel disease. Apart from the clinical and scientific work, Christine enjoys her regular teaching activities at the Medical Faculty of the University of Heidelberg as much as in Nepal. And of course, there’s always a life outside the hospital, and Christine enjoys learning new languages (Nepali at the moment, which is too difficult to be enjoyable though) and recently discovered her passion for Yoga.

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Achieving our vision of a life free from stroke is a task that WSO cannot achieve alone. We are committed to building our partnerships at the global, regional and national level to scale up and deliver improvements in prevention, treatment and support to reduce the burden of stroke.

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