Head: Dr. rer. nat. Ulrike Steffen (formerly Harre)
Arthritis is a group of severe, most often chronic inflammatory diseases. The pathophysiology of arthritis is incompletely defined to date. Our research group aims to define the underlying pathophysiologic processes of rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis und spondyloarthritis, in order to gain a better understanding of these diseases.
We are primarily interested how inflammation is induced in the joints in arthritis and how it affects other organs such as the skeletal system. In the last years we could uncover some seminal pathogenic processes of arthritis. such as the functional role of autoimmunity, i.e. autoantibodies in rheumatoid arthritis, the link between mechanical factors and inflammation and tissue destruction in psoriatic arthritis and mechanisms of bone formation and ankylosis in spondyloarthritis.
Our group search for new pathobiologic processes, which determine the disease course of arthritis by using translational research approaches, in order to gain maximal relevance of findings for human disease.