Tackling Rheumatoid Arthritis & Beyond

In the fall of 2021, the Arthritis Foundation’s Medical and Scientific Advisory Committee assembled a working group of experts from government and academia to help refine and focus our priorities in rheumatoid arthritis research. Additional discussions about RA research gaps and unmet medical needs will occur during the Virtual Science Symposium on Nov. 18, 2021, at 6:30 p.m. ET.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Working Group 

Mary (Peggy) Crow, MD (Chair)

Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS)

Jennifer Anolik, MD, PhD

University of Rochester

Laura Cappelli, MD

Johns Hopkins University

Stanley Cohen, MD

Metroplex Clinical Research Center, Dallas

V. Michael Holers, MD

University of Colorado

Yvonne Lee, MD, MMSc

Northwestern University

Ted Mikuls, MD, MSPH

University of Nebraska Medical Center

David Pisetsky, MD, PhD

Duke University

William H. Robinson, MD, PhD

Stanford University

Jeffrey Siegel, MD, PhD



Areas of opportunity for rheumatoid arthritis research being discussed by the working group include: 

Initiation and Evolution of Disease 

-Genetic risk and contributions of rare variants 

-Environmental triggers – e.g., microbial, metabolic 

-Regulation of protein modification 

-Lessons from early-/pre-RA 


Pathogenic Mechanisms 

-Transition from biologic risk to breaking immune tolerance 

-Transition from systemic to joint-localized disease 

-Adaptive immune system-stromal interactions 


Disease Phenotypes 

-Mechanisms of seronegative RA 

-Biomarkers of severe disease/prognosis 

-Lessons from Accelerated Medicines Partnership – synovial endophenotypes 



-Mechanisms of cardiovascular disease 

-Mechanisms of bone resorption 

-Implications of comorbidities for patient management 


Therapeutic Response 

-Refractory RA – responders vs. non-responders 

-Strategies and biomarkers for response, remission and de-escalation 

-Stratification for therapeutic trials 

-Contributions of pain to treatment response 


Patient Management 

-Comparative effectiveness of current therapies 

-Patient compliance 

-Management of residual pain 

-Sleep and diet  

-Point of care ultrasound and wearable technology 

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The Arthritis Foundation is focused on finding a cure and championing the fight against arthritis with life-changing information, advocacy, science and community. We can only achieve these goals with your help. Strong, outspoken and engaged volunteers will help us conquer arthritis. By getting involved, you become a leader in our organization and help make a difference in the lives of millions. Join us and become a Champion of Yes.

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By taking part in the Live Yes! INSIGHTS assessment, you’ll be among those changing lives today and changing the future of arthritis, for yourself and for 54 million others. And all it takes is just 10 minutes.

Your shared experiences will help:

- Lead to more effective treatments and outcomes
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- Shape a powerful agenda that fights for you

Now is the time to make your voice count, for yourself and the entire arthritis community. 

Currently this program is for the adult arthritis community.  Since the needs of the juvenile arthritis (JA) community are unique, we are currently working with experts to develop a customized experience for JA families. 

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By sharing your experience, you’re showing decision-makers the realities of living with arthritis, paving the way for change. You’re helping break down barriers to care, inform research and create resources that make a difference in people’s lives, including your own.

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As a partner, you will help the Arthritis Foundation provide life-changing resources, science, advocacy and community connections for people with arthritis, the nations leading cause of disability. Join us today and help lead the way as a Champion of Yes.


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