Volkhard Linder


  • University of Tübingen, 1985; MD, PhD


Dr. Volkhard Lindner is a Senior Scientist at the Maine Medical Center Research Institute, which is part of Maine Medical Center in Portland, Maine. He received his MD and PhD degree from the University of Tübingen, Germany. He trained as a postdoctoral fellow in vascular biology at the University of Washington, Seattle, where he studied the role of growth factors in vascular injury and repair. Dr. Lindner is a member of the Graduate Faculty in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and Engineering at the University of Maine and Professor of Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine. He has served on numerous NIH peer review panels and is currently a charter member of the Vascular Cell and Molecular Biology study section. He has published 89 peer reviewed articles with over 12000 citations and an H-index of 52. Dr. Lindner’s current research focus is on identifying the functions of Collagen Triple Helix Repeat Containing-1 (Cthrc1), a gene discovered in his laboratory.

Research Interests

Function of the Cthrc1 Gene

The focus of our laboratory is on understanding the function of the gene Collagen Triple Helix Repeat Containing-1 (Cthrc1), which was discovered in our laboratory several years ago. This gene is only found in chordates and has interesting developmental expression patterns.

Gain-of-function studies indicate that Cthrc1 inhibits collagen deposition both in vitro and in vivo. We have shown that this inhibition is mediated by an inhibition of the transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-ß) signaling pathway. In addition, we have generated Cthrc1 deficient mice, which develop cardiovascular defects in the adult stage. The cardiovascular phenotype is being analyzed in the laboratory.

Other ongoing research in the laboratory is focused in the biochemistry and mechanism of action of Cthrc1.

Aberrant expression of Cthrc1 has been reported in gene chip array analyses of human cancers. Several collaborations with clinicians at the Maine Medical Center are ongoing to explore the role of Cthrc1 in human heart disease.

Selected Publications

  1. Pyagay P, Heroult M, Wang Q, Lehnert W, Belden J, Liaw L, Friesel RE, Lindner V. Collagen Triple Helix Repeat Containing 1 (Cthrc1), a novel secreted protein in injured and diseased arteries inhibits collagen expression and promotes cell migration. Circ Res 2005; 96: 261-268.
  2. Stohn JP, Perreault NJ, Wang Q, Liaw L, Lindner V. Cthrc1, a novel circulating hormone regulating metabolism. PLoS One. 2012;7(10):e47142. PMCID: PMC3466254.
  3. Stohn JP, Wang Q, Siviski ME, Kennedy K, Jin Y-R, Kacer D, DeMambro V, Liaw L, Vary CP, Rosen CJ, Prudovsky I, Lindner V. Cthrc1 controls adipose tissue formation, body composition, and physical activity. Obesity 2015; 23:1633-1642.
  4. Jin Y-R, Stohn JP, Wang Q, Nagano K, Baron R, Bouxsein ML, Rosen CJ, Adarichev VA, Lindner V. Inhibition of osteoclast differentiation and collagen antibody-induced arthritis by CTHRC1. Bone 2017; 97:153-167.
  5. Toomey BH, Mitrovic SA, Lindner-Liaw M, Leon Vazquez RG, Kacer D, Ryzhov S, Prudovsky I, Lindner V. Activated CTHRC1 promotes glycolysis in endothelial cells: Implications for metabolism and angiogenesis. Vascul Pharmacol. 2023 Dec;153:107246. doi: 10.1016/j.vph.2023.107246. Epub 2023 Nov 29.PMID: 38040222