About the Laboratory
The adrenal glands make steroid hormones that are critical to survival and play essential roles in the way the body responds to stress. Adrenal hormones regulate blood pressure and have effects on almost all tissues in the body. Prominent features that develop when too much of these adrenal steroids are produced include bone and muscle loss, skin thinning, obesity, high blood pressure and suppression of the immune system. These features are very common in the population even when the level of adrenal steroids is normal in the circulation. However, we have found that some of these people have an excessive level of these steroids within their tissues due to local production.
In the Adrenal Steroid Lab we examine the role of adrenal steroids in these common conditions. Particular projects include:
The role of local steroid production in post-menopausal osteoporosis
The role of local steroid production in the development and persistence of rheumatoid arthritis
The role of local steroid production in bone and cartilage damage during joint inflammation
The endocrinology of critical illness
The role of glucocorticoid metabolism in osteosarcoma