Healthy ageing leads to the inevitable wear and tear on joints which coupled to repetitive use and activity throughout life, results in trauma to the normal healthy joint and important changes in catabolism and function of joint components. Two crucial cell types maintain healthy joints; the chondrocytes (in the articular cartilage) and the synovial fibroblast-like stromal cells which produce and retain the essential lubricating synovial fluid. This project aims to identify and target critical alterations in epigenetics and gene and protein expression profiles in cells that accompany age and stress-related degeneration of joints to enhance joint repair and maintain functional longevity.
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