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Berlin Researchers Study Self-healing Processes in Older Age Groups

DFG Funding for New Research Unit at Charité

№ 255/2014 from Jul 04, 2014

The self-healing capacities of the human body diminish with age. In light of demographic changes facing society, this presents great challenges in medicine. A new research unit at Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin called "Regeneration in Aged Individuals: Using Bone Healing as a Model System to Characterize Regeneration Under Compromised Conditions," aims to investigate what influences have a negative effect on bone healing as individuals age and then link their findings to research into other age-related processes. The project is being funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) for a three-year period. The cooperation partners are Freie Universität Berlin and Humboldt–Universität zu Berlin.

The research team led by Prof. Dr. Georg Duda, director of the Julius Wolff Institute at Charité, is investigating which factors are responsible for the slower healing of bone fractures in older patients, those with an altered immune system, or under demanding mechanical conditions. "Starting with bone healing as an example, the team will take a closer look at the importance of different stress factors for regeneration. The research will be the basis, on the one hand, for early diagnosis of patients at risk, and on the other hand, for new approaches in therapy to accelerate healing in elderly patients," says Prof. Duda.

In addition to the Julius Wolff Institute, several more institutions at Charité will be involved in the research. They are the Institute of Medical Genetics Human Genetics, the Institute for Medical Immunology, the Center for Musculoskeletal Surgery, and the Berlin-Brandenburg Center for Regenerative Therapies.

Further Information

Prof. Dr. Georg Duda, Director, Julius Wolff Institute, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Tel.: +49 30 450-559079, Email: georg.duda@charite.de