Marjon News

Dr Christina Karatzaferi granted EU funding for muscle research

Released: 07.04.16

Christina Karatzaferi 2016


A Horizon2020 grant has been awarded to Associate Professor Christina Karatzaferi (EU programme H2020-MSCA-RISE).

This international collaborative project is entitled “Muscle Stress Relief: An integrated research program linking together basic research on secondary myopathies in stress states to innovative translation in applied myology". The project’s Coordinator is Professor Siegfried Labeit (University of Heidelberg, Germany), and Dr Karatzaferi is a co-Investigator and work package leader.

The project brings together 14 international academic and industry organisations at the forefront of basic and translational myology. The Marjon team will focus on renal disease stress effects on muscle contractility, using a combination of single muscle fibre mechanics, biochemical and other biological assays, to take place at the new suite of laboratories. 

Why is this research important?

Skeletal muscle loss and dysfunction, including weakness, is increasingly becoming an unmet health issue with far reaching consequences: chronic renal, or cardio- metabolic disease, as well as ageing and/or unhealthy lifestyles, even among the young, all leading to muscle mass loss and functional deficits. Sufferers then restrict their mobility, increase their risk of a fall, and acquire further comorbidities. All of these result in low quality of life, increased societal and healthcare costs, disability and premature death.

What is the benefit?

Understanding how systemic stress affects skeletal muscle function at the cellular level will guide the design of new pharmaceutical and other interventions.

Through exchanges of staff and young researchers, the next generation of muscle experts will acquire crucial interdisciplinary and intersectoral skills to enhance their career prospects in academia, biotechnology and business.

The generation of new knowledge and myology skills will strengthen the global position of the UK and EU researchers in the health & innovation sector.

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