Collaboration is a vital component of many successful endeavours, including research. Often the focus of researchers and their students becomes narrow over time as the minutia of a single area is explored. Having a number of people analysing the same problem from different viewpoints
will therefore increase the chances for novel insight. In a more practical manner too, no one person or laboratory can be expected to be experts in every experimental technique and methodology, meaning there is often no choice but to reach out to those with varied expertise. While necessary,
collaboration is not easy as multiple interests must be balanced and strong communication developed to ensure everyone is on the right page and working toward the common goal. All of these elements have led to an incredibly successful collaboration between two distinct groups of pathologists
at the Kindai University's Faculty of Medicine, Japan. ?Our department has two distinct groups, the experimental pathology group which consists of basic scientists and the diagnostic pathology group consisting of clinical pathologists,' says Dr Azusa Yoneshige, a member of the experimental
group. This union of groups, one exploring new techniques and knowledge, with the other focused on implementing said knowledge in clinical practice seems a perfect match. 'We believe that this collaboration will achieve outstanding results,' highlights Yoneshige. The two groups meet regularly
and share a working space, leading to strong communication and ideas being shared by the group. They have also begun to see outstanding results. 'The team has recently made several important discoveries surrounding the pathogenic action of a cell adhesion molecule known as CADM1,' outlines
Yoneshige. 'Adhesion molecules are expressed on the surfaces of cells and interact with surrounding cells and the extracellular matrix to help cells adhere to each other and their surroundings.' CADM1 is found in many types of cells in the body. 'Recently our lab has found that CADM1 is cleaved
by a protease in several pathogenic organs such as the lungs of emphysema or interstitial pneumonia patients, the pancreas of those with diabetes, the kidney of nephropathy suffers, and the enteric nerve of dilated colon,' says Yoneshige. They believe that this cleavage and subsequent shedding
is part of pathogenic processes that induce cell death and degeneration.
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