The Arthritis Biology Program covers basic as well as patient-relevant clinical research in a number of arthritic diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, Lyme arthritis, and viral arthritis. The mission of the program is to better understand the molecular mechanisms underlying disease pathogenesis and translate early evidence into developing treatments and improving patient outcomes.
Areas of focus include:
- Involvement of synovium, cartilage and bone in disease initiation and perpetuation;
- Role of the innate and adaptive immune systems and associated signaling pathways in the initiation and propagation of arthritis;
- Role of stromal cells and their interactions with immune cells in joint tissue remodeling pathways in arthritis;
- Contribution of dysregulated cellular processes (e.g., metabolism, cell cycle, autophagy, etc.) to the etiology and pathogenesis of arthritis;
- Identification of critical cellular and molecular pathways involved in pathogenesis to facilitate identification of potential therapeutic targets;
- Design, development and execution of clinical trials and longitudinal cohorts in arthritic diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, Lyme arthritis, and viral arthritis;
- Execution of research to effectively test the comparative efficacy and safety of new and existing therapies (drugs, biologics, devices);
- Elucidation of mechanisms of extra-articular organ involvement and the development of co-morbidities;
- Development of animal models that adequately reflect human disease to study the mechanisms of arthritis;
- Use of non-invasive methodologies and technologies for functional studies of disease prognosis and disease course.