Lund University has a long tradition of studying connective tissue and patients with osteoarthritis have been studied at the Department of Orthopedics at Skåne University Hospital (SUS) since long. This has created a unique mix of researchers with complementary expertise. By bringing together research groups with expertise in the osteoarthritis field to jointly plan and implement projects, research issues can be addressed from a broad perspective. LOAD is a network in which senior researchers in orthopedics, radiology, medical radiation physics, physical therapy, biochemistry, epidemiology and biomechanics are included.
Within the LOAD network we have access to the currently most advanced MRI technology for examining cartilage quality as well as to mass spectrometry for studying both cartilage and meniscal tissue at the molecular level. Availability of non-invasive and highly sensitive cartilage analysis methods as well as of clinical expertise and patient cohorts, in addition to expertise in various disciplines, provides LOAD with unique opportunities to answer questions at the molecular as well as at the clinical level in the field of osteoarthritis. The common overall goal of the network is to develop better ways to diagnose, prevent and treat osteoarthritis and thus provide better quality of life for patients living with the disease.