Head: PD Dr. rer. nat. Michael Stock
Our group investigates the role of signalling molecules in development and pathogenesis of skeleton.
One main aspect of our research focuses on the analysis of Wnt signalling pathways and their regulation in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Wnt-factors are signalling molecules, which play an important role in the progression of rheumatoid arthritis. They are able to activate cells through specific signalling pathways, thereby changing cell behaviour. Within this project we examine the role of the Wnt regulator Wif-1 in RA, which is specifically expressed by cartilage cells of the articular surface.
In a second key project we investigate the function of the recently discovered secreted cartilage protein Ucma. Up to now little is known about the physiological function of Ucma. Yet, our data indicate that Ucma may have an impact on bone formation or homeostasis.