Edinburgh Pathology

Professor Donald Salter

Professor of Osteoarticular Pathology



Osteoarticular Research Group

Centre for Genomic and Experimental Medicine

The University of Edinburgh

Western General Hospital

Crewe Road

Edinburgh EH4 2XU

Current Research

We are actively involved in research in a number of diseases and conditions that afflict the musculoskeletal system with the aim to increase the understanding of the pathological processes involved and to identify new targets for translational studies that will improve patient outcomes. Currently we are focussing on the use of mesenchymal stromal cells for bone and cartilage repair and as theragnostic agents in the treatment of cancer. We have developed a novel transgenic approach that allows  mesenchymal stromal cells to produce magnetic nanoparticles. These intrinisically magnetic cells are being assessed in parallel with MSCs carrying engineered nanoparticles  for their effectiveness as delivery systems for a range of clinical applications including  bone and cartilage repair, for in vivo imaging, magnetic hyperthermia treatment or for radio sensitisation for cancer therapy.  Sarcomas, are much rarer with an incidence of 0.1 – 5 per 100,000 depending on the specific type. Sarcomas in bone are most commonly seen in young teenagers and adolescents whilst sarcomas in soft tissue are most common in patients older than 55. We are working as part of a multidisciplinary group in Edinburgh (with Professor Ted Hupp, Professor Val Brunton, Professor Stuart Ralston and Larry Hayward) to develop animal models of sarcomagenesis including osteosarcoma and angiosarcoma to better understand the biology and molecular abnormalities that result in the development of these rare cancers with the aim of identifying biomarkers targetable pathways and immunotherapeutic approaches that will allow specific personalised therapy.

Group Members

Members Name


Telephone Email
Helen Caldwell Laboratory Manager        +44 (0)131 537 3150 Email Helen Caldwell 
Fransiscus Kerans  PhD Student +44 (0)131 651 8754 Email Fransiscus Kerans

Ji Won Park (with Carsten Hansen)          

PhD Student  


Meredyth Griffin (with Val Brunton) PhD Student    


Web Links

Selected Publications

Jamil NS, Azfer A, Worrell H, Salter DM. Functional roles of CSPG4/NG2 in chondrosarcoma. Int J Exp Pathol. 2016;97:178-86

Russo A, Bianchi M, Sartori M, Parrilli A, Panseri S, Ortolani A, Sandri M, Boi M, Salter DM, Maltarello MC, Giavaresi G, Fini M, Dediu V, Tampieri A, Marcacci M. Magnetic forces and magnetized biomaterials provide dynamic flux information during bone regeneration. J Mater Sci Mater Med. 2016;27:51.

Sophocleous A, Börjesson AE, Salter DM, Ralston SH. The type 2 cannabinoid receptor regulates susceptibility to osteoarthritis in mice. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2015;23:1586-94

Roberts SB, Wootton E, De Ferrari L, Albagha OM, Salter DM. Epigenetics of osteoarticular diseases: recent developments. Rheumatol Int. 2015 Aug;35(8):1293-305

Murray E, Hernychová L, Scigelova M, Ho J, Nekulova M, O'Neill JR, Nenutil R, Vesely K, Dundas SR, Dhaliwal C, Henderson H, Hayward RL, Salter DM, Vojtěšek B, Hupp TR. Quantitative Proteomic Profiling of Pleomorphic Human Sarcoma Identifies CLIC1 as a Dominant Pro-Oncogenic Receptor Expressed in Diverse Sarcoma Types. J Proteome Res. 2014 May 2;13(5):2543-59.