Contact

Professor Dr. Ralf H. Adams
Email: ralf.adams@mpi-muenster.mpg.de

Secretary's office: Nina Stengel
Tel.: +49 251 70365-400

Fax: +49 251 70365-499

Email: office-adams@mpi-muenster.mpg.de

Sekretariat coordination DFG FOR2325: Jutta Middendorf
Tel.: +49 251 70365-402

Fax: +49 251 70365-499

Email: office-adams@mpi-muenster.mpg.de

Professor Dr. Ralf H. Adams
Professor Dr. Ralf H. Adams

Professor Dr. Ralf Adams was jointly appointed with the Medical Faculty of the Westphalian Wilhelms-University.

Westphalian Wilhelms-University
Medical Faculty of the WWU

CiM-Logo-standard-RGB-60 Our department is part of the Cluster of Excellence "Cells in Motion" (CiM).

Department of Tissue Morphogenesis

Department of Tissue Morphogenesis

Professor Dr. Ralf H. Adams

How lifelines find their way

If devised by an engineer, such a perfect system would set a Guinness World Record: A hundred thousand times a day – more than 36 million times a year – our heart pumps blood through a 90,000 kilometer-long network of blood vessels and minute capillaries. It supplies every organ in the body with life-sustaining oxygen and nutrients.

However, the mechanisms controlling the formation of this complex network are not completely understood  Not only is angiogenesis essential for the formation of organs during embryonic development, it also plays a role in pathological processes, such as the growth of tumors and metastases.

Ralf Adams and his team seek to elucidate which molecular signals regulate these processes – both in the healthy and the diseased organism. Research has revealed that there is no single command center for generating organs and tissue. Rather, their development occurs in a series of processes which build on each other and in which the involved cells are in continual crosstalk with their surroundings.

Adams and his team just recently discovered a vitally important molecule which mediates such crosstalk: Only when specific membrane cells of the capillaries express the protein ephrin-B2 on their surface can the cells connect firmly enough with the new sprouting vascular tubes to make these functional. Studies on mice have shown that if this molecule is lacking, the organism dies shortly after birth.

 
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