Head: PD Dr. med. Milena Pachowsky
Reliable classification and diagnosis of inflammatory arthritis (RMD), such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or psoriatic arthritis (PsA), and differentiation from other causes of joint inflammation, such as osteoarthritis or infections, is crucial for successful treatment. Tissue biopsies from the interior of the joint (synovia), the periarticular tissue or tendon attachments (enthesis) or tendon sheath (peritendineum) can provide valuable information about the cause of the disease and thus a targeted therapy can be started. The working group specialises in obtaining synovial tissue using tissue-conserving, minimally invasive biopsy methods. The analysis of these samples is carried out with research partners in the laboratories of Department of Internal Medicine 3 using the latest analytical methods such as liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry coupling (LC-MS/MS) and immunofluorescence. The tissue biopsy results are also combined with the quantitative results of new imaging methods, such as metabolic 7T MRI or PET imaging, to gain new insights into disease development and therapy response. In cooperation with radiology, new imaging techniques are placed in a clinical context and researched. In addition to the classical morphological images, sequences are being developed and investigated that provide even more precise, functional information on tissue structures.
The aim is to refine the diagnosis and monitoring of inflammatory and degenerative joint diseases and to embed new methods in clinical application. To this end, there is close cooperation with the research groups of PD Dr. Kleyer/PD Dr. Simon, Prof. Krönke, PD Dr. Ramming, Prof. Nagel and Prof. Janka (radiology), nuclear medicine as well as the study outpatient clinic of Department of Internal Medicine 3 and other research groups of the hospital.
PD Dr. Pachowsky leads and coordinates the invasive diagnostics. The indication for a tissue biopsy is made according to clinical aspects, weighing up the benefits and risks.