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Fibrogenesis: Cellular and Molecular Basis (Medical Intelligence Unit)

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This book is written to provide in-depth and current information on the molecular basis of fibrotic diseases in various tissues and organs. Why do we need a new book on fibrosis? Several currently available books on fibrosis are mostly devoted to specific tissue or organ systems; in contrast, this book is especially designed to provide integral and comprehensive information on fibrogenesis. Individual chapters of this book present up-to-date information on the cellular and molecular basis of fibrosis or sclerosis in heart, lung, liver, kidney, and blood vessels. Chapters present the effects on fibrogenesis of inflammation, oxidative stress, lowdensity lipoprotein, ischemia, apoptosis, and aging. The chapter authors who are actively involved in clinical and basic research have outlined the emerging therapies that can eventually treat fibrotic diseases. The future therapeutic potentials of matrix-degrading enzymes on the reversibility of fibrotic disorders are also included. The wide range of topics that are covered in this book will provide the reader with a comprehensive and detailed understanding of fibrogenesis. Recent molecular studies have changed the commonly held view that the extracellular matrix proteins are biologically passive, i.e., they mosdy act as glue between cellular elements. Extensive research on matrix biology in the last decade or so has identified numerous essential dynamic fiinaions for the extracellular matrix proteins, ranging from fetal development to tissue repair. Extracellular matrix proteins play crucial roles in determining the microenvironments and fiinctional activities of the surrounding cells. However, excessive accumulation of extracellular matrix proteins in chronic inflammatory, immunologic, or metabolic diseases can lead to functional impairment of the affected tissues and eventual end stage organ failure. Irreversible fibrotic diseases are a major clinical problem, with high morbidity and mortality. The clinical importance, and significance of the fibrotic diseases in various tissues and organs have led me to conceive of this book. Leading experts in the field of matrix biology have contributed chapters containing essential information required to have an in-depth understanding of the cellular and molecular basis of fibrogenesis. This book will be important reading for all those involved in basic and clinical research on matrix biology. My utmost hope is that, amongst the readers, some will be inspired to take up the challenge and excitement of research to fiirther enhance our knowledge and understanding of the complex biomechanistic pathways of fibrotic diseases. Such intellectually challenging efforts will help in developing new therapeutic strategies to treat fibrotic diseases.

I extend my sincerest thanks and gratitude to each of the contributing authors for his or her time and efforts. I acknowledge Dr. R. Landes of Landes Bioscience for his cooperation in publishing this book. Finally, I wish to acknowledge my mentor, and teacher. Prof T. Taguchi of Nagasaki University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences for his help and guidance. Particularly, I would like to thank the Razzaque family (Rafi, Yuki, Zahid, Ayesha, Amina, Abida, Muhit, Newaz, Tahiti, Karima, Shahid, Diane, Lisa, and Amma) for their encouragement, support, and help during my many hours of writing and editing. I hope that scientists and clinicians who need a quick update on fibrogenesis in their research and practice will find this a useful reference book.
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