Towards Precision Medicine in systemic sclerosis

​Novel Imaging Techniques and Therapeutic Approaches

Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is a multisystemic autoimmune disease with a mortality as high as that of untreated cancer patients. Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is one of the primary causes of death in systemic sclerosis (SSc). However, from the patients' perspective, skin fibrosis and chronic ulcers are the most impairing factors in everyday life.

The two biggest challenges for the personalized management of patients with SSc are the lack of

  • sensitive diagnostic markers for outcome prediction
  • targeted therapies.

We dedicate our research efforts to

  1. the development of novel imaging biomarkers employing molecular targeted nuclear imaging such as PET-/SPECT-CT or -MRI, CT-based radiomics and machine learning methodologies to predict outcome and drug responses,
  2. the elucidation of tissue remodeling mechanisms in the pathogenesis of SSc with special focus on environmental triggers (e.g. microbiome, radiation) and aberrant tissue repair mechanisms by using 3D cell culture models and different animal models,
  3. the identification of novel therapeutic targets for the individualized treatment of lung and skin involvement in SSc.

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Projects

 

 


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