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Laboratory of translational research, campus Brugmann

The unit consists of different research groups: 1) Laboratory of experimental immunology (F Corazza); 2) Clinic of Immunoallergology (O. Michel, VI Doyen);  3) Physiopathology of bone and calcium metabolism:  regulation of bone remodeling  and the role of the Parathyroid-hormone Related Peptide in its regulation (P. Bergmann, N. Nijs, R. Karmali); bone mass measurements in metabolic bone diseases (coll. with the dept of Nuclear Medicine (A.S. Hambye), the Dept of medicine (J.J. Body, S. Cappelle) and the Clinic of Rheumatology, A. Peretz); 4) Experimental surgery: grafts of foetal organs (V. Coulic, with the collaboration of the Dept of Surgery and the Laboratory of Pathology); 5) Clinical Research Unit (A. Peretz, T. Besse): conception, organization and gestion of clinical studies.


Study of the methods used to evaluate bone mass and fracture risk

The golden standard for bone evaluation is dual photon X-ray absorptiometry(DXA) of the lumbar spine and of the hip. More recently, ultrasounds have been proposed as an alternative for bone measurements. The question is that of the complementarity of these approaches: does ultrasound behaviour inform us on bone structure, independently of its known relation to bone mass. To try to answer this question, we compare the results of DXA to those of ultrasound investigations in different clinical bone diseases, characterized by a great diversity of bone structure modifications.

Study of bone diseases, especiallv those associated with an abnormality of vitamin D metabolism and of parathyroid hormone secretion.Study of disuse osteoporosis (coll. withe the CTR).

Metabolic bone diseases, particularly those associated with hyperparathyroidism and with urolithiasis and different forms of osteoporosis are studied with regards to bone mass and turn-over, and to calcium metabolism regulation, for instance, parathyroid hormone secretion and 1,25 dihydroxycholecalciferol synthesis.On the other hand, we study disuse osteoporosis in spinal patients, both from the point of view of their bone mass and soft tissue composition and from that of osteoclast formation (osteoclast precursors cultures, in coll. with the laboratory of hematology).

Expression and role of the Parathyroid Hormone-related Peptide (PTHrP) in bone.

We bave demonstrated the expression of PTHrP mRNA and peptide in foetal and adult bone tissue. We look at its regulation by endocrine or paracrine factors. We investigate if local production of PTHrP plays a role in the regulation of bone metabolism.