Genetic Physiology research group
Our research projects are directed towards understanding the mechanism of contraction and its regulation in muscle cells.
Muscle contraction is a key event in several physiologically important processes, e.g. the movement of the legs during running, and control of blood pressure by contraction of vessels and the beating of the heart.
Research in our laboratory
Our research focus is mainly on smooth and cardiac muscle, two muscle types that are involved in several pathological conditions in humans. We are currently exploring processes involved in cellular signaling in smooth muscle, mainly regulation of myosin phosphatase by Rho-Rho kinase and protein kinase C pathways, using preparations from intestine, urinary bladder, urethra, blood vessels and airways.
The processes involved in regulation of cardiac contraction are examined using recordings of contraction and of electrophysiological properties of isolated cardiomyocytes and trabecular preparations. The studies of isolated cardiac tissue are combined with measurements using perfused whole heart preparations (Langendorff technique) and with structural characterization using small angle X-ray diffraction at the HASY-lab synchrotron radiation beamline, Hamburg.
Core Facility for Genetic Physiology
An important aspect of our approach is to combine the in vitro analysis with measurements of cardiovascular and muscle function on whole animals. Our research group manages the Karolinska Institutet Core Facility for Genetic Physiology where (transgenic) mice can be examined with ECG, blood pressure recordings, telemetry, whole animal metabolism, echocardiography and cystometry.
Several unique animal models for urinary bladder and intestinal hypertrophy, cardiac ischemia and exercise are beening developed with the goal to translate the basic research to an understanding of human disease and development of novel pharmacological approaches.