The Laboratory of Professor Matić gathers a group of young scientists committed to the study of neuroendocrine and dietary aspects of the development of Metabolic Syndrome, which is one of the leading health problems worldwide. Our scientific endeavors are primarily focused on the molecular mechanisms of glucocorticoid hormones actions in the development of Metabolic Syndrome, since these hormones are important regulators of energy homeostasis, metabolic inflammation, as well as of insulin and leptin signalling pathways. In the next three years the role of stress and fructose diet in the development of Metabolic Syndrome will be elucidated through collaboration with Professor Luc Tappy's group from Switzerland as a part of the SCOPES Joint Research Project entitled: Interactions between stress and dietary fructose in the development of the metabolic syndrome: role of glucocorticoids.

The research focus of this project is to highlight some cellular and molecular mechanisms which underlie neuroinflammation, to identify potential target molecules and signaling pathways. Our aim is to find adequate therapeutic approaches for sanitation of neuroinflammation and promotion of regeneration after the central nervous system (CNS) damage. The efficacy of several therapeutic approaches (purine nucleoside analogues: Ribavirin and Tiazofurin, hyperbaric oxygenation, B vitamins - B1, B2, B3, B6, B12) in suppression of detrimental and enhancement of beneficial inflammatory mechanisms is tested. Considering the pivotal role of extracellular purine nucleotides and nucleosides in the control of neurodegenerative processes and inflammatory responses a particular focus will be put on regulation of their metabolism and the role of ectonucleotidases.

Our research is focused on studying lung, breast, thyroid and brain tumors. Experimental studies include the identification of changes in genes structure, expression, and corresponding proteins function, which could be used as molecular markers for the prediction of tumor progression, response to therapy and disease outcome. By comprehensive analysis of PI3K/Akt/mTOR key molecules in the postoperative material of different tumor types and by comparative analysis of the complete genome originating from tumor and normal tissue using DNA profiling method, we managed to identify changes in DNA related to carcinogenesis and to define new candidate genes responsible for the cancer progression and resistance to therapy.


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