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Regulation of skeletal muscle cell plasticity in health and disease

The molecular processes inherent in trained or diseased muscles may provide information about the development of muscle diseases.

Physical activity combined with a balanced diet is one of the most important measures to prevent or treat many diseases. Surprisingly, the mechanisms underlying the molecular adaptation responsible for the health-promoting effects of muscle training are still largely unknown.

Muscle functioning during training or in disease
We are interested in investigating the molecular processes that are set in motion during training and have a beneficial effect on our health. In addition, we aim at obtaining a greater understanding of exactly how muscle pathologies lead to dysfunction of the muscle, and how we can apply our knowledge of the developmental processes in trained muscles to the treatment of disease.

From molecule to patient
We combine state-of-the-art systems biology methods with innovative computational analysis of the transcriptional networks that control muscle cell plasticity. Together with work in muscle stem cells in culture, these approaches shed novel insights into muscle biology.

Improved understanding of muscle diseases
Our goal is to gain a better molecular understanding of healthy and diseased muscle. This might allow the development of new treatments for diseases that are associated with a lack of physical activity, such as type 2 diabetes. We also hope that we will be able to find therapeutic approaches to help patients who suffer from various types of muscle disease, including muscular dystrophies.