Cellular thyroid hormone availability: regulation of development and tissue repair, and pathogenesis of degenerative disease


  • Prof Graham Wlliams

    Imperial College London

  • Prof J. H. Duncan   Bassett

    Imperial College London

Project summary

The basic cellular and molecular programmes that drive growth and development are also essential for tissue maintenance and response to injury. These fundamental mechanisms have been evolutionarily optimised for reproductive fitness, but not for healthy ageing. Dynamic regulation of intracellular thyroid hormone availability is an evolutionary conserved development switch that controls cell proliferation and differentiation, organ maturation and growth. Reversion to this critical developmental programme has recently been implicated in injury and tissue repair. During this award, Professors Williams and Bassett intend to provide a comprehensive understanding that can be exploited for therapeutic benefit in the prevention and treatment of degenerative disease and tissue injury. They have developed unique resources required to manipulate the developmental switch in a conditional and cell-specific manner. They hypothesise a fundamental role for regulated thyroid hormone availability in the coordination of tissue development and function, but its dysregulation in ageing and chronic disease.