The roles of TIMP-1 in cartilage degradation and repair after load-induced injury
TIMP-1, a natural inhibitor of metalloproteinases, is also known to play an important role in preventing cancer and improving wound healing in cardiovascular tissues. In his ANRF project, Dr. Chen takes advantage of modern molecular biology and gene therapy to study how the lack of TIMP-1 protein may affect the degenerative and repair processes of injured cartilage. He will also study whether the increasing TIMP-1 could prevent cartilage degeneration and benefit cartilage repair right after joint injury. Whereas previous studies by Dr. Chen’s group have been performed using isolated tissues in a test tube, this study will examine intact joints. Dr. Chen anticipates that the findings will provide novel insights on the role of TIMP-1 in cartilage degeneration and on treating damaged cartilage in osteoarthritis and other types of arthritis.