ZAFES Projects: Internal/External



Lipid signaling

The new competence center “Lipid signaling”, established by ZAFES, investigates the role of lipids and their metabolites in human metabolism. Thirteen researchers, from the Departments of Medicine, Chemistry and Pharmacy at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University Frankfurt, are funneling their efforts in nine sub-projects towards the clarification of the molecular and cellular mechanism of lipids in the regulation of inflammation. ZAFES members, Prof. Dr. Rudi Busse, Prof. Dr. Dr. Gerd Geißlinger, Prof. Dr. Josef Pfeilschifter, Prof. Dr. Dr. Jürgen M. Stein and Prof. Dr. Dieter Steinhilber, are involved in this project. This research group is using a broad spectrum of modern techniques, such as BICORE binding studies, NMR-investigations, gene expression analysis, cellular localization studies, several image yielding procedures, as well as knock-out animals, to determine certain metabolic pathways. Furthermore, to determine lipid mediators in biological probes using LC-MS, an analytic laboratory is being established.

Lipids and their metabolites are not only essential components of the cell membrane, they are also important signal molecules, which are involved in the regulation of fundamental cell processes such as cell growth, differentiation and apoptosis. Irregularities in the lipid metabolic pathway play important roles in numerous diseases such as atherio-sclerosis, several rheumatoid and allergic diseases, cancer and neuro-degenerative diseases. A better understanding of patho physiological mechanisms can be obtained through the identification of different lipid components as mediators in cell physiological processes, along with an increase in knowledge regarding the regulation of the enzymes and receptors involved. This will lead to the development of novel therapeutic strategies and novel drugs, the ultimate goal of this project.

< back