Scientific research of the Diagnostic Center
The Diagnostic Center conducts scientific research and education in eight specialties of clinical laboratory medicine and medical imaging. Our research activities and product development is innovative.
Diagnostic Center is Finland’s leading provider of clinical laboratory and medical imaging services in eight medical specialties. In addition, the Diagnostic Center is responsible for the statutory research and education obligations of university hospitals for these specialties, in cooperation with the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Helsinki.
Thanks to active research work, the Diagnostic Center represents up to 20% of the research output of the entire HUS Helsinki University Hospital annually. Likewise, in cooperation with the university, a large number of doctoral degrees (20) are completed each year.
The science project unit of Diagnostic Center manages all the laboratory sampling, sample preparation and analytics services needed for clinical research projects in the HUS area.
Hannele Kangas, Chief Clinical Chemist, tel. 050 428 6180
Anna Klemetti, Clinical Laboratory Specialist, tel. 040 353 2685
Hilkka Kärkkäinen, Research Coordinator, tel. 050 427 0494
The purpose of the Diagnostic Center’s research panel is to promote the high quality of research. At the request of the researchers, the research panel evaluates pharmaceutical, nursing and health science studies from the perspective of the research subjects.
Senior Medical Director Päivi Tissari grants a research permit for research conducted at the Diagnostic Center.
Research permit applications are made through the Tutkijan työpöytä (researcher’s desk) application.
What are we currently studying?
The main research topics in bacteriology and immunology include:
- immunological identification mechanisms and their errors
- pathogenesis and diagnostics of autoimmune diseases
- microbial and host interactions, microbial virulence mechanisms, bacteriophages
- utilization of genome opening (genomics, proteomics, systems biology, functional studies)
- pathogenetic mechanisms of infectious diseases, the role of infections in systemic diseases
- threats of new infections
- immunotoxicology and allergies
- microbial diagnostics
- the development of new treatment methods and the study of vaccination options
Principal investigator: Professor Seppo Meri
Principal investigator: Professor Hannu Sariola
BioMag is a state-of-the-art research laboratory for medical, technical and psychological research located in the main building of Meilahti Hospital.
The laboratory is also conducting clinical research to study details related to brain diseases, cardiac arrhythmias, and electrophysiology. Research objectives include, for example, the development of monitoring and rehabilitation of patients with cerebral infarction, brain injury, and spinal cord injuries.
The main research topics in clinical pharmacology include:
- drug interactions
- drug safety
1–5 doctoral dissertations are completed annually. In its field of research, the unit is at the top of international results, as evidenced by the fact that the unit’s research group IndiViDrug received maximum scores in the category “Research of the participating community represents the international forefront in its field” in the international evaluation of research and doctoral education conducted by the University of Helsinki in 2005–2010. The department also offers advanced projects.
Principal investigator: Professor Janne Backman
The focus areas of clinical chemistry and hematology research include translational cancer research, coagulation disorders, myocardial damage research, and laboratory diagnostics of biomarkers.
Principal investigator: Professor Kari Pulkki
Medical physics is a field of research in applied physics that aims to improve the quality of medical and clinical applications. The aim of research is to ensure that medical professionals have the best possible knowledge and tools to improve diagnostics and treatments.
Principal investigator: Professor Sauli Savolainen
The main research topics in medical genetics include:
- identification of new hereditary diseases and the hereditary component of the diseases
- identification of the heredity of diseases and their gene mutations and/or risk alleles
- study of the interaction between genes and environmental factors
- study of the function and regulation of genes, epigenetics
- genetic diagnostics
- tumor genomics
- study of molecular pathogenesis
Principal investigator: Professor Päivi Peltomäki
As a field of research, pathology focuses on investigating the causes and mechanisms of diseases and developing new morphological and molecular biological diagnostic methods. The pathology department at Haartmaninkatu 3 conducts strong cancer and neuropathology research.
The facility at Haartmaninkatu 3 also houses the HUS pathology laboratory, which is one of the largest pathology diagnostic laboratories in Europe. Cooperation with the laboratory provides an optimal framework for translational research, in which the aim is to develop the basic research in pathology into new diagnostic methods.
The main research topics in pathology include:
- new tumor markers and their utilization in cancer diagnostics
- the origin and spreading mechanisms of cancer
- movement of normal malignant cells
- tumors and angiogenesis
- brain diseases (neurodegenerative)
- muscle diseases and healing of muscle injuries
- chromosomal changes and mutations in cancers
- signal transmission in normal and malignant cells.
Principal investigator: Ari Ristimäki
Radiology has research groups and doctoral candidates in the fields of neuroradiology, cardiac imaging, musculoskeletal radiology, pediatric radiology and metabolic imaging, among others.
Principal investigator: Professor Taina Autti
The main research topics in virology include:
- zoonotic viruses, in particular those spread by rodents and arthropods (such as hanta and flaviviruses) and their diagnostics, molecular epidemiology, evolution, disease associations, and pathogenesis
- pathogenesis and innovative diagnostics of new DNA viral diseases
- papillomaviruses and cervical cancer
- molecular diagnostics and pathogenesis of chlamydial infections
- molecular interactions between viruses and their host cells, especially in relation to cell communication, avoidance of viral defenses, and the effects of micro-RNA
Principal investigator: Professor Kalle Saksela