The Laboratory of Rheumatology, Autoimmunity and Inflammation together with the Affiliated Clinical Research Unit at the University Hospital, represent an interdisciplinary group of physician scientists, bio-scientists, clinicians and nurses, which investigate medical inflammation in the context of autoinflammatory-autoimmune rheumatic diseases (rheumatoid arthritis [RA]), systemic lupus erythematosus [SLE], familial Mediterranean fever). It has been officially approved as a research laboratory of the Medical School, University of Crete (FEK 1207, 26 April 2016).
The laboratory explores mechanisms of tissue injury and repair with the ultimate goal of developing novel biomarkers and therapies. We use animal models of SLE, RA, and other autoimmune diseases, as well as tissues obtained from humans (blood, bone marrow, skin, synovium and kidney) to investigate innate and adaptive immune responses under the premise that they share common effector pathways for tissue injury. Importantly, we explore the relative contribution of these pathways in human diseases by studying well characterized patient cohorts seeking to identify molecular biomarkers for diagnosis and monitoring. We seek to understand how novel therapies work and explore molecular or genetic biomarkers that predict response or toxicity to therapy.
We are interested in understanding how these mechanisms intersect in the context of "immune tolerance" and the "homeostatic regulation" of the inflammatory response that protects the organism from inflammation-induced injury. We also seek to decipher how variations in genome and gene expression observed in these diseases may contribute to aberrant function of immune cells.


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