Molecular Musculoskeletal Research
Investigators: Christopher Cardozo,MD,
Weiping Qin, MD, PhD.
Hesham Tawfeek, MD
Following an SCI, muscles become atrophic (e.g., smaller) and bones osteoporotic (e.g., thinner and weaker). Changes in the nervous system predispose to spasticity. State-of-the-art methods are being used to understand how these deleterious changes occur and conduct research that investigates novel potential treatments to mitigate them.
The molecular laboratory team focuses on the basic mechanisms and possible treatments for several problems after SCI: muscle shrinkage, bone loss, and metabolic derangements. The team analyzes genetic changes in muscle and bone cells that occur after SCI, then studies the effects of different drug and mechanical treatments on the expression of those genes. This provides a better understanding of the mechanisms by which treatment strategies achieve their benefits to muscle and bone. By partnering with clinician investigators and pharmaceutical companies, the molecular & musculoskeletal team is now hoping to translate advances in the laboratory to clinical trials, and ultimately, clinical practice of new therapeutic strategies to mitigate bone and muscle loss after SCI.
Principal Investigator: Christopher P. Cardozo, MD
Dr. Cardozo received a BS in Mechanical Engineering and MD from University of Wisconsin. He performed his residency in Internal Medicine and Fellowship in Pulmonary Diseases at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He has been an investigator at the SCDRC since 2001. He heads our basic science laboratory, consisting of three scientists and three support staff.
Dr. Cardozo’s research focuses on the molecular mechanisms of several problems after SCI: muscle shrinkage, bone loss, and metabolic derangements. His team studies the potential of strategies to improve the size and function of muscle and strengthen bones after paralysis. They analyze the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which these strategies achieve their benefits to muscle and bone. By partnering with clinician investigators and pharmaceutical companies, they are now hoping to translate advances in the laboratory to clinical trials, and ultimately, clinical practice of new therapeutic strategies to mitigate bone and muscle loss after SCI.
Investigator Background: Weiping Qin, MD, PhD (Co-Principal Investigator)
Dr. Qin received his MD degree from Fujian Medical University, China, in 1987, and his Ph.D. degree from Kanazawa University, Japan, in 2001. He joined the SCDRC as an investigator in 2007. In collaboration with world-leaders in bone biology, osteoporosis, and spinal cord injury research such as Drs. Bauman and Cardozo, Dr. Qin devotes his efforts toward an innovative research program with the objectives of identifying novel treatments for bone loss due to spinal cord injury and exploring underlying molecular mechanisms.
Dr. Cardozo’s Active Studies:
The role of the Numb protein in the effects of the anabolic steroid nandrolone in reducing muscle atrophy after nerve injury.
The role of calcineurin in nandrolone’s actions to preserve paralyzed muscle.
Molecular mechanisms by which bone reloading alters bone cell biology in animal models of SCI.
Molecular and genetic changes induced by androgen treatment for muscle atrophy.
Nandrolone normalizes determinants of muscle mass and fiber type after spinal cord injury.
Wu Y, Zhao J, Zhao W, Pan J, Bauman WA, Cardozo CP.
J Neurotrauma. 2012 May 20;29(8):1663-75.
Nandrolone reduces activation of Notch signaling in denervated muscle associated with increased Numb expression.
Liu XH, Yao S, Qiao RF, Levine AC, Kirschenbaum A, Pan J, Wu Y, Qin W, Bauman WA, Cardozo CP.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2011 Oct 14;414(1):165-9.
Testosterone reduced methylprednisolone-induced muscle atrophy in spinal cord-injured rats.
Wu Y, Collier L, Pan J, Qin W, Bauman WA, Cardozo CP.
Spinal Cord. 2012 Jan;50(1):57-62.
Dr. Qin’s Active Studies:
Androgen as a Novel Therapeutic Strategy for Preventing Bone Loss after Spinal Cord Injury: Animal Models and Molecular Mechanisms
The Potential Anabolic Effect of Whole Body Low Intensity Vibration on Bone in a Rat Model of Spinal Cord Injury Investigation of the Effect of Sclerostin Antibody to Reduce Bone Loss after Acute or Sub-acute Spinal Cord Injury
- Sun L, Pan J, Peng Y, Wu Y, Li J, Liu X, Qin Y, Bauman WA, Cardozo C, Zaidi M, Qin W. Anabolic steroids reduce spinal cord injury-related bone loss in rats associated with increased Wnt signaling. Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine. 2012. In Press.
- Qin W, Bauman WA, Cardozo C. Evolving Concepts in Neurogenic Osteoporosis. Curr Osteoporos Rep. 2010 Dec;8(4):212-8.
- Qin W, Bauman WA, Cardozo C. Bone and muscle loss after spinal cord injury: organ interactions. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2010 Nov;1211:66-84.
- Cardozo CP, Qin W, Peng YZ, Liu X, Pan J, Wu Y, Bauman WA, Zaidi M and Sun L. Nandrolone slows hindlimb bone loss in a rat model of osteoporosis due to sciatic nerve transection and disuse. Annals of New York Academy of Sciences. 2010 Mar;1192(1):303-6.
Christopher Cardozo, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine, Pharmacology and Systems Therapeutics, and Rehabilitation Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine
Staff Physician, James J. Peters VA Medical Center
(718) 584-9000 ext 1828
Weiping Qin, MD, PhD, Scientist
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine
Researcher, James J. Peters VA Medical Center
(718) 584-9000 ext 1859
Xinhua Liu, MD, PhD, Scientist
(718) 584-9000 ext 1859
Yong Wu, MD, Scientist
(718) 584-9000 ext 1809