The Vascular Physiology Group studies the blood vessel wall with respect to cellular signalling mechanisms, contractility, and cell differentiation. Cell types that are particularly investigated are the smooth muscle cells that cause vasoconstriction and the endothelial cells on the inside of the vascular wall that are important for its permeability and interaction with blood components. The differentiation and functional properties of smooth muscle cells depend on the cellular environment. Any disturbance of this, such as inflammation, lipid infiltration or damage to the endothelium, will lead to reactions that can initiate atherosclerotic lesions. Furthermore, we focus on the mechanisms and endogenous factors behind other inflammatory diseases such as periodontitis.