Research Programs

 

Molecular Biomedicine Program

The Molecular Biomedicine Program (MBP) focuses on a medically important family of genes called AU-rich messenger RNAs (mRNAs). These codes for many proteins that are critical in maintaining healthy reactions during the body responses such as immune response and cellular growth. Disturbances in these processes may lead to unwanted prolonged responses and thus diseases such as chronic inflammation and cancer. Thus, the program implements laboratory studies of this area in different disease conditions and pinpoints pathways that can be targeted for therapy. Although MBP is one of the smallest department/section in the Research Center, it gained international recognition over the years and received outstanding citation metrics, awards, and patients.

 

Cardiovascular Research Program

This program focuses on understanding molecular genetic and epigenetic mechanisms regulating cardiovascular diseases. The program is organized in 3 units: Epigenetic Regulation by Nuclear CaMKII in the Heart, Genetics of Famililal Dilated Cardiomyopathy and Role of a Specific Protein Phosphatase in Cardiovascular Diseases. Our goals are to uncover fundamental new mechanisms controlling cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure, which remain in major cause of death in the Saudi population and in the world at large. We focus on intracellular signaling pathways, transcriptional regulatory networks and epigenetic events in the normal and the diseased heart, using comprehensive methodologies in cellular systems, animal models and samples from patients with end-stage heart failure. The long-term goal is to use the new information generated in the laboratory to develop therapies to improve the health of patients with cardiovascular disorders.

 

The Stem Cell and Tissue Re-engineering Program

The Stem Cell and Tissue Re-engineering Program, Research Centre, focuses on investigating the molecular and cellular mechanisms of stem cell biology,  their application for therapeutic use in a number of clinical areas including spinal cord injuries, cardiovascular, neurodegenerative, renal and autoimmune diseases, and cancer, and on the engineering of living organs to cure patients with end-stage organ failure. The department is working towards achieving the goal of excellence in stem cell research in the Middle East and worldwide. Members of the program are actively participating in basic, pre-clinical and translational clinical research, teaching, and in collaborative projects with the scientific and clinical community. In addition, this program is in dynamic collaboration with the Imperial College London and members of the Harvard Medical School and its affiliated Hospitals, The Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Children’s Hospital Boston, and The Massachusetts General Hospital, The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), United States of America and Karolinska University, Sweden.  We are convinced that a well-funded team will bring the dream of curing human disease by implanting fabricated organ to reality. We are moving the field toward tremendously and this have led to our conviction that the generation of living constructs for human therapy, including whole organs such as a heart, liver, pancreas, lung and kidney, is close at hand and will happen at KFSH&RC. KFSH&RC is now recruiting the best Saudi biologist, engineers, and clinicians in the world and we firmly believe that a coordinated program that brings all these talents together will achieve our ultimate goal – the fabrication of vital organs through bioengineering. Achieving this goal will change medicine, as we know it. Importantly, the program is committed to the training, recruitment and advancement of Saudi scientist, physicians, technicians and students.