Rheumatic diseases are a complex group of human disorders that cause significant morbidity and mortality. With the identification of gene loci involved in human rheumatic diseases, the next objectives will be to identify the function, localization, and interactions of these gene products and to determine their role in the initiation and progression of rheumatic diseases. To advance research into molecular and cellular basis of the rheumatic diseases, the Analytical Imaging and Immunoreagent Core will support RDCC investigators research programs with state-of-the-art imaging capabilities and through the generation of essential immunoreagents. First, the Immunoreagent Component will assist P30 investigators in the development and characterization of novel monoclonal antibodies that are relevant to the study of rheumatic diseases. Second, the Imaging Component will provide center members with access to high-end imaging capabilities that include multi and single photon confocal, high resolution fluorescence using Stimulated Depletion (STED) and conventional transmission, cryo, and environmental scanning electron microscopy. In addition, the AIIC will provide expertise in the areas of exeperimental design, data collection, and data analysis. The resources provided through the AIIC far exceed the capabilities available to individual laboratories and departments and together will facilitate the detailed analyses of the pathogenic mechanisms leading to rheumatic diseases.
A more thorough understanding of the molecular mechanisms and pathophysiology of rheumatic diseases is needed in order to develop novel therapeutic and management approaches. The AIIC will advance research by providing investigators with access to novel immunoreagentsand and high-end imaging capabilities that are not available in single laboratories or most departments. In addition, the AIIC will provide exepertise in the areas of exeperimental design, data collection and data analysis.
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