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Department of Medicine

Department of Medicine

  Division of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology

CENTERS AND INSTITUTES


Scleroderma


Scleroderma

FINDING A CURE - BASIC AND TRANSLATIONAL RESEARCH

Research Activities

The Center includes 5 full-time faculty members and 5 research staff. We currently collaborate with faculty from 8 other Divisions/Departments within the School of Medicine and a number of investigators from other institutions.

Our major resources include large, longitudinal databanks, serum and DNA banks, and tissue specimens (autopsies, skin/lung biopsies and lung transplant tissues). We have registries for systemic sclerosis in twins, childhood onset systemic sclerosis, and localized scleroderma and Raynaud disease.

Faculty clinical interests include the epidemiology, clinical and serologic classification of disease, organ system involvement, natural history and survival of systemic sclerosis and localized forms of scleroderma. Areas of translational research include vascular stiffness and endothelial dysfunction in SSc, serum cytokines as markers of vascular and endothelial dysfunction, immune cell and fibroblast dysfunction, and genetic contributions to disease etiology. Other emphases include basic pathophysiologic mechanisms involved in fibrosis of the skin and lungs, animal models of fibrosis, lung fibroblast function in interstitial lung disease, pulmonary arterial hypertension, immunologic mechanisms in gastrointestinal hypomotility, cardiac disease in SSc, and abnormal T-cell function.

Over the past 40 years, we have published over 300 peer-reviewed journal articles, and over 100 textbook chapters and other invited works on scleroderma and related diseases. We have trained 6 fellows who have gone on to develop scleroderma patient care and research programs at other institutions, nationally and internationally.