The effect of direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy on extracellular matrix (ECM) turnover, a prominent feature of chronic hepatitis C (CHC), is unknown. ECM protein degradation and formation generate fragments reflecting the tissue turnover balance when quantified in the blood. PRO-C3 and PRO-C4 re...

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There is an unmet need for high-quality liquid biomarkers that can safely and reproducibly predict the stage of fibrosis and the outcomes of chronic liver disease (CLD). The requirement for such markers has intensified because of the high global prevalence of diseases such as non-alcoholic fatty liv...

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Extracellular matrix (ECM) remodeling is a hallmark of the pathology of gastrointestinal disorders. Collagen type VI (COL6) is produced by fibroblasts, and the COL6 α3-chain has shown to be elevated in patients with ulcerative colitis (UC), Crohn's disease (CD) and colorectal cancer (CRC). Measuring...

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Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by a slow heterogeneous progression. Therefore, improved biomarkers that can accurately identify patients with the highest likelihood of progression and therefore the ability to benefit from a given treatment, are needed. Elastin is an es...

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Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by chronic inflammation and lung tissue deterioration. Given the high vascularity of the lung, von Willebrand factor (VWF), a central component of wound healing initiation, has previously been assessed in COPD. VWF processing,...

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Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and alcoholic liver disease (ALD) are common causes of chronic liver disease. The overlap between ALD and NAFLD suggests the existence of metabolic steatohepatitis. Development of in vivo models that reflect various aspects of human steatohepatitis is essenti...

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An altered liver microenvironment characterized by a dysregulated extracellular matrix (ECM) supports the development and progression of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). The development of experimental platforms able to reproduce these physio-pathological conditions is essential in order to identify ...

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Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by abnormal epithelial repair process that may result in intra-airway accumulation of fibrin. Given that plasma fibrinogen is the only FDA approved biomarker that predicts mortality and COPD exacerbations, we hypothesized that...

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Therapies to reduce liver fibrosis and stimulate organ regeneration are urgently needed. We conducted a first-in-human, phase 1 dose-escalation trial of autologous macrophage therapy in nine adults with cirrhosis and a Model for End-Stage Liver Disease (MELD) score of 10-16 (ISRCTN 10368050). Groups...

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BACKGROUND: Lifestyle modifications remain the cornerstone of treatment in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). However, they requently fail related to the inability of patients to implement lasting changes. AIMS: To evaluate the effects of a short, web-based, individualised exercise program ...

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Following liver transplantation (LT), 10-30% of patients develop recurrent cirrhosis (RC). There is an urgent need for predictive non-invasive markers for improved monitoring of these patients. Here we studied extracellular matrix biomarkers as predictors of RC after LT. Forty-seven LT patients were...

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Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is characterised by excessive extracellular matrix (ECM) deposition and remodelling. Measuring this activity provides an opportunity to develop tools capable of identifying individuals at-risk of progression. Longitudinal change in markers of ECM synthesis was ass...

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Background and aims: Although combined antiretroviral treatment (cART) has improved overall survival of HIV infected patients, liver fibrosis and liver related-mortality still constitute major challenges in HIV positive patients. Collagen accumulates in the liver during fibrogenesis. Recent studies ...

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OBJECTIVE: This study assessed the utility of plasma fragments of propeptides of type III (PRO-C3), V (PRO-C5), and VI (PRO-C6) procollagen for the detection of liver fibrosis in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: Patients with T2DM (n = 191) underwent an or...

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Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by a slow heterogeneous progression. Therefore, improved biomarkers that can accurately identify patients with the highest likelihood of progression and therefore the ability to benefit from a given treatment, are needed. Elastin is an es...

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BACKGROUND: Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is a prevalent disease that is highly associated with the metabolic syndrome and type II diabetes. The development of in vivo models that reflect all nuances of the human NASH pathology is essential for drug discovery and development. We aimed to furt...

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OBJECTIVES: Portal hypertension in cirrhosis is associated with endothelial dysfunction, impaired wound healing, and decreased platelet count. Increased von Willebrand factor (VWF) formation has been suggested as a compensatory mechanism, but the role of VWF processing has not been directly assessed...

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OBJECTIVES: Remodeling of the extracellular matrix (ECM) is a key event in different lung disorders, such as fibrosis and cancer. The most common cell type in the connective tissue is fibroblasts, which transdifferentiate into myofibroblasts upon activation. All myofibroblasts express α-SMA, which h...

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BACKGROUND AIMS: Remodelling of extracellular matrix is crucial in progressive liver fibrosis. Collagen type III desposition has been shown in acute decompensation. Extratracellular matrix is compiled of deposition of various components. The role of basement membrane collagen type IV in advanced cir...

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OBJECTIVES: Lysyl oxidase like 2 (LOXL2) is associated with poor prognosis in idiopathic pulmonary disease (IPF) and cancer. We developed an Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) targeting the LOXL2 neo-epitope generated through the release of the signal peptide during LOXL2 maturation. DESIGN ...

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Background: Patients with atherosclerosis have a high risk of cardiovascular events and death. Atherosclerosis is characterized by accumulation of lipids, cells and extracellular matrix proteins in the intima. We hypothesized that dysregulated remodeling of the basement membrane proteins may be asso...

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Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by high levels of protease activity leading to degradation of elastin followed by loss of elasticity of the lung and the development of emphysema. Elastin is an essential structural component of the lung parenchyma to support the expansio...

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Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by high levels of protease activity leading to degradation of elastin followed by loss of elasticity of the lung and the development of emphysema. Elastin is an essential structural component of the lung parenchyma to support the expansio...

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BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Macrophages play a significant role in chronic liver disease as reflected by elevated soluble (s)CD163 and mannose receptor (sMR) levels and associated with liver disease severity and prognosis. Extracellular matrix remodelling associated with fibrogenesis may be affected by sys...

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BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Macrophages play a significant role in chronic liver disease as reflected by elevated soluble (s)CD163 and mannose receptor (sMR) levels and associated with liver disease severity and prognosis. Extracellular matrix remodelling associated with fibrogenesis may be affected by sys...

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BACKGROUND: Host genetic modifiers of the natural history of chronic hepatitis B (CHB) remain poorly understood. Recently, a genome-wide association study (GWAS)-identified polymorphism in the STAT4 gene that contributes to the risk for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) was shown to be associated with ...

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OBJECTIVE: There is a need for non-invasive biomarkers that can identify patients with progressive liver fibrosis and monitor response to anti-fibrotic therapy. An equally important need is identification of patients with spontaneous fibrosis regression, since they may not need treatment nor be incl...

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OBJECTIVE: There is a need for non-invasive biomarkers that can identify patients with progressive liver fibrosis and monitor response to anti-fibrotic therapy. An equally important need is identification of patients with spontaneous fibrosis regression, since they may not need treatment nor be incl...

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OBJECTIVE: Atherosclerosis is characterized by accumulation of lipids, cells and extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins in the arterial wall. Collagen type I (COL1), a component of the arterial ECM, is cleaved by matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and known to be remodelled in atherosclerosis. We explore...

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The matricellular protein SPARC (secreted proteome acidic and rich in cysteine) is known to bind collagens and regulate fibrillogenesis. Cleavage of SPARC at a single peptide bond, increases the affinity for collagens up to 20-fold. To investigate if this specific cleavage has pathological relevance...

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