Research Area Leaders
B. Brüne, S. Dimmeler, B. Fisslthaler, I. Fleming, A. Günther, U. Müller-Ladner, S. Offermanns, J. Pfeilschifter, M. Potente, K.T. Preissner, V. Randriamboavonjy, S. Rohrbach, A. Weigert, N. Wettschureck
Altered metabolism, especially in the context of the “metabolic syndrome”, is linked to the accelerated development of cardiovascular disease and atherothrombosis. This condition affects an ever increasing proportion of the population and is expected to reach epidemic proportions in the next 20 years, making patient treatment of major socio-economic importance. However, the cellular metabolites and signalling pathways and the humoral factors (microRNA, adipokines, cytokines and fatty acid-derived mediators) that are the causal links between disturbed metabolic states and the development of cardiovascular disease and atherothrombosis remain to be elucidated. Area G focuses on the endocrine-vascular interface and will concentrate on crosstalk between the vasculature and endogenous metabolic signals, adipokines, platelets, microparticles and platelet-conjugated cellular complexes. Disturbances in vascular homeostasis will be assessed in an integrated approach involving metabolomic and proteomic analyses as well as animal disease models (including genetically altered mice). The overall aims are to elucidate novel causative components and the mechanisms by which they contribute to the onset and progression of the cardio-pulmonary consequences of the metabolic syndrome, as well as to identify new molecular targets for drug therapy.