Aptamers, Nucleotide; Aptamers, Peptide; Arthritis, Rheumatoid; Cartilage; Diagnostic Imaging; Fibroblasts; Magnetic Resonance Imaging; Multimodal Imaging; Musculoskeletal Diseases; Synovitis; Ultrasonography
- Fibroblast research
Research Area: Fibroblasts are key players of the destructive process which accompanies joint inflammation, which get activated in early arthritis by proinflammatory mediators and undergo epigenetic changes similar to those seen in tumour cells, resulting in aggressive and invasive behaviour into the adjacent cartilage and bone. The aim of this project is to design highly selective aptamers targeting fibroblasts.
- Musculoskeletal Imaging
Head: Peter Mandl
Research Area: Optimisation of existing- and development of novel imaging methods to investigate the musculoskeletal system in rheumatic & musculoskeletal diseases.
- Outcomes in musculoskeletal and inflammatory diseases
My clinical research interests include the use of imaging for diagnosing, monitoring and predicting rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases, in particular the utility of ultrasound for the monitoring of inflammation and structural changes in rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and osteoarthritis. In addition, I perform comparative imaging research using cadavers, histology, magnetic resonance imaging and ultrasound to better understand the anatomical and histological basis of rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases.
My basic research interest focuses on fibroblast-like synoviocytes, cells of mesenchymal origin, which get activated in early arthritis by proinflammatory mediators and undergo epigenetic changes similar to those seen in tumour cells, resulting in aggressive and invasive behaviour into the adjacent cartilage and bone. Together will our cooperation partner Tamas Meszaros at the Semmelweis University, Budapest we seek to design highly selective aptamers targeting proteins, which play key roles in the activation of fibroblast-like synoviocytes and to study their therapeutic as well as diagnostic potential. In addition, we aim to identify as of yet unknown surface proteins which are characteristic of activated fibroblasts.
I have published over 90 peer-reviewed publications within the field of rheumatology and musculoskeletal imaging, and published a textbook on the use of musculoskeletal ultrasound for the hand.
Techniques, methods & infrastructure
Our basic research interests entail state-of-the-art technologies, including the aptamer selection process, CRISPR-Cas9 technology, immunofluorescence microscopy, flow cytometry, proliferation, migration and invasion assays and will also involve experiments on in vivo animal models of arthritis.
Our department has several high-end musculoskeletal ultrasound units and has access to all other, novel imaging methods. A number of collaborative projects with the Department of Anamtomy, the Division of Neuroradiology and Musculoskeletal Radiology, the MRI Excellence Center as well as our own research facilities featuring both disease-specific databases as well as the VISOR sonography database provide unique opportunities for imaging research.
- Aptamers targeting fibroblasts in inflammatory arthritis (2022)
Source of Funding: FWF (Austrian Science Fund), Joint
- Gessl, I. et al., 2021. Role of joint damage, malalignment and inflammation in articular tenderness in rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and osteoarthritis. Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, pp.annrheumdis–2020–218744. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/annrheumdis-2020-218744.
- Mandl, P. et al., 2020. Doubtful swelling on clinical examination reflects synovitis in rheumatoid arthritis. Therapeutic Advances in Musculoskeletal Disease, 12, p.1759720X2093348. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1759720X20933489.
- Mandl, P. et al., 2019. Development of semiquantitative ultrasound scoring system to assess cartilage in rheumatoid arthritis. Rheumatology, 58(10), pp.1802–1811. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/rheumatology/kez153.
- Mandl, P. et al., 2015. EULAR recommendations for the use of imaging in the diagnosis and management of spondyloarthritis in clinical practice. Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, 74(7), pp.1327–1339. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/annrheumdis-2014-206971.
- Mandl, P. et al., 2016. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors modulate osteoclastogenesis. Arthritis Research & Therapy, 18(1). Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13075-016-0961-x.