The Department of Biomedicine

BBB seminar: Wolfgang Vogel

Signaling by DDR collagen receptors in health and disease

Main content

Wolfgang Vogel
Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, University of Toronto, Canada

My research focuses are on the molecular signals essential for cells to adhere to the extracellular matrix. I have a particular interest in collagen, which is a central component in tissues of all higher organisms. Proper communication between cells and the surrounding collagenous matrix is vital for embryonic development as well as for the maintenance and rejuvenation of tissue architecture during adult life. Changes in the extracellular matrix system are the reason for physiological processes, such as ageing, but also for the manifestation of a large number of human diseases.

My postdoctoral work yielded the key finding that various types of collagen activate Discoidin Domain Receptors (DDRs), a subfamily of tyrosine kinase receptors. Through this research, I discovered a new signaling mechanism used by cells to respond to collagen and to re-model their microenvironment. With my ongoing studies, I analyze the role of aberrant collagen-receptor signaling in disease processes such as tumor cell invasion and tissue fibrosis.

Host: Donald Gullberg, Department of Biomedicine