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Potentially new therapeutic target for joint rheumatism has been identified

The scientists working with the lead author Berno Dankbar of the Institute for Experimental Muscle and Skeletal Medicine at the Medical University of Münster in Germany and the University Clinic for Internal Medicine III at Vienna’s General Hospital/Rheumatology of the Medical University of Vienna are concentrating on the growth and differentiation factor 8, also known as myostatin. It is produced mainly in muscle tissue.

"If one removes the myostatin gene from mice, this leads to muscle hypertrophy (Note: overly strong muscle growth). Studies on animal models support the premise that myostatin is a negative regulator for muscle growth and regeneration. A lack of myostatin promotes bone growth“, say the scientists, including Silvia Hayer and Kurt Redlich from the Vienna University Hospital.

"The results strongly suggest that myostatin could be an important goal in order to impact the formation of osteoclasts and damage to joints in the case of rheumatoid arthritis“, the authors wrote. 

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