Through hormones, metabolites and other cellular messengers all organs of the human body are connected. The international team of the Interorgan Toxicology led by Cristina Cadenas examines the interaction of different organs with special consideration of the corresponding metabolic processes.
With its growing expertise in lipid metabolism, recent work is also focussed on the highly relevant non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), with the aim to understand how chronically increased fatty acid influx into the liver results in metabolic alterations that compromise liver function (Kessler et al., 2014; Gogiashvili et al., 2016). A current major focus is linking the metabolic processes between the liver and the kidney, especially in diseases such as fatty liver.
The Interorgan Toxicology deals with several different techniques that allows the systematic evaluation of cellular responses upon stress stimuli. Other activities by the group include:
- collection of clinically-available patient datasets, and establishment of in vivo and in vitro relevant models of fatty liver disease and cancer to address scientific questions
- generation and statistical analysis of transcriptomics data of these models for understanding cell behaviour at the transcriptional level (in collaboration with the Statistics Department at the TU Dortmund)
- establishment of close collaborations with the Analytical Chemistry Unit at IfADo and with local and regional partners (ISAS Dortmund and University of Münster) for the quantification of relevant lipid species and key metabolic intermediates by NMR or mass spectrometry-based methods
The Interorgan Toxicology also works closely with other groups within the institute, as well as maintaining fruitful collaborations with both scientists both nationally and internationally.