Our Financial Commitment

The Arthritis Foundation has invested more than $400 million on research to support more than 1,300 scientists, physicians and health professionals involved in cutting-edge arthritis research.


Our Focus

The Arthritis Foundation is the largest private, non-profit contributor to arthritis research in the world. Our Research Program complements government and industry-based arthritis research by focusing on training new investigators and pursuing innovative strategies for preventing, controlling and curing arthritis. The Arthritis Foundation funds three major types of grant mechanisms:

  • Career development and training programs These grants encourage scientists to begin research careers in the arthritis field and then help them nurture their development into independent arthritis researchers.

  • Investigator-initiated These grants support basic, clinical and health services research relevant to arthritis.

  • Special targeted research initiatives These grants focus on promising areas of arthritis research or on specific types of arthritis.


The Arthritis Foundation Research Program funds research with the greatest potential for improving the lives of people with arthritis. Within its focused grant mechanisms, the Foundation funds a broad spectrum of types of research and scientific disciplines.

The research portfolio ranges from

  • basic "bench" research in such areas as genetics, immunology, biochemistry and cell biology to identify the genes that cause arthritis and the underlying disease processes;

  • to clinical "bedside" and behavioral studies that utilize human subjects to develop and test new medical, rehabilitation, surgical and psychoeducational treatments;

  • to research in the "trenches" including epidemiology studies to increase understanding of patterns of disease and health services research to improve quality of care and ensure that scientific advances in treatment are integrated into practice.

The Foundation's research includes studies relevant to many forms of arthritis and related conditions as well as studies that focus on specific conditions.

Much of our progress can be attributed to our effective partnerships. Some have been with other health organizations such as the American College of Rheumatology, and some have been with private donors such as the Segal family and the Charlson Foundation.

As the largest non-profit contributor to arthritis research, we fill a critical role in the big picture of arthritis research. Since our start in 1948, we have funded more than 1,300 researchers with more than $400 million in grants. By supporting researchers in the early stages of their careers, we make important initial discoveries possible that lead to ultimate breakthrough results. However, even with this commitment, we still watch every year as grants that rate “stellar” in our Peer Review Process go unfunded. These are potential cures without the funding to be realized.

When it comes to research, every dollar counts. The Arthritis Foundation is dedicated to finding a cure for arthritis. But we cannot do it alone. We need your help.


Selecting Research Projects

The Arthritis Foundation is consistently investing its research dollars wisely to support only the highest quality research. A rigorous, highly respected and impartial Peer Review Process ensures that only the most promising, relevant and significant research gets funded. Divided into groups by area of specialty, scientific experts review and rank every research application submitted to the Arthritis Foundation. Every year, many promising researchers and highly meritorious research projects go unfunded, because there is simply not enough money to support them.

Your financial support to the Arthritis Foundation is vital if we hope to increase research funding and find a cure for arthritis. Find out how you can help.

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