NF-kappaB in cardiovascular and renal disease models

A side project deals with the role of NF-κB in cardiovascular and renal disease. Little is known about the molecular controls that regulate cardiovascular and renal disease, although both pose an important clinical problem. To investigate the involvement of NF-κB activity in hypertension-induced cardiac hypertrophy, or in renal damage, mice with either cardiomyocyte-restricted, endothelial cell- or proximal tubulus-specific NF-κB suppression were generated. In cooperation with Dominik Müller,  and Martin Bergmann, (currently Asklepios Klinik St. Georg, Hamburg, Germany), our laboratory has contributed significantly to the in vivo demonstration of critical roles for NF-κB in hypertension-mediated cardiac and renal end organ damage (Freund et al., 2005; Henke et al., 2007). An ongoing interdisciplinary project (involving the groups of Dominik Müller and Kai Schmidt-Ott) studies the role of NF-κB and the reciprocal interaction between NF-κB and BMP signaling in acute kidney injury (AKI). We hypothesize that NF-κB and BMP/Smad are interdependent and compartment-specific signals activated in AKI that modulate inflammation, apoptosis, proliferation, damage severity, and transition to chronic disease.




Ruth Schmidt-Ullrich



Dominik Müller (ECRC), Kai Schmidt-Ott (MDC)