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AIR Scientists Publish Findings on NR4A Expression in RA Synovium

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Nida Meednu, PhD, Javier Rangel-Moreno, PhD, Katherine Esclera-Rivera, Jennifer Anolik, MD, PhD and colleagues recently published their article, “Dynamic spectrum of ectopic lymphoid B cell activation and hypermutation in the RA synovium characterized by NR4A nuclear receptor expression” in Cell Reports. The paper describes the role of NR4A in B cell activation in RA synovium. Read the full article.

$10 Million NIH Grant Funds Research on Treatments for Autoimmune Diseases

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

The Allergy, Immunology & Rheumatology division, along with other URMC collaborators, has earned a multimillion-dollar grant for five years to research autoimmune diseases.  Jennifer Anolik, M.D., Ph.D., professor and interim chief of Allergy/Immunology & Rheumatology, and Christopher Ritchlin, M.D., M.P.H., professor of Allergy/Immunology & Rheumatology, will lead rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis/psoriatic arthritis research teams, respectively.

Learn more about this grant.

Dr. Anandarajah Awarded Grant to Reduce Racial Disparities in Clinical Trials

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Allen Anandarajah, M.B.B.S., has been awarded a grant from the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), funded through the US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health. Funding will go towards developing initiatives that will reduce racial disparities in lupus clinical trials. The grant is titled TIMELY, which stands for Training to Increase Minority Enrollment in Lupus trials with communitY engagement. TIMELY is a two-year grant for $500,000, which will be split between URMC and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, both universities leading the efforts on this initiative. The grant will run through September 2023.

Anandarajah and URMC were chosen as leaders for this new program due to the success of a previous two-year program, Materials to Increase Minority Involvement in Clinical Trials (MIMICT).

In the US, lupus is more common in African American and Hispanic populations, however, patients from these populations are currently underrepresented in lupus clinical trials. The goal of the project is to increase clinical trial literacy for physicians and community health workers on phases, functions, and benefits, through educational materials woven throughout a multi-stage, interactive training program. This will lead to raising clinical trial awareness among underrepresented patients living with lupus in our region.

“This project will help us continue to be national leaders in providing high-quality care for patients from minority communities with lupus,” said Anandarajah. “We started a few years ago with the IQ-LUPUS project that was partly funded by the Greater Rochester Health Foundation (GRHF) and have continued to improve our efforts first with the MIMICT and now the TIMELY projects. In addition to serving our patients, these grants will ultimately help build better relationships with our community."

Read the press release from the ACR.

Dr. Looney's Research on Senescent Cells in Lupus Highlighted by the Department of Defense

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Lupus research conducted by R. John Looney, MD and his lab has been highlighted in a Department of Defense publication that features news about biomedical research in the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program.

Read the article: "Therapeutic Targeting of Senescent Cells in Lupus"

Katherine Escalera-Rivera Recognized on the International Day of Women and Girls in Science

Friday, February 11, 2022

On February 11th, International Day of Women and Girls in Science, URMC introduced five inspiring women in science including Ms. Escalera-Rivera, a graduate student in the PhD Program in Pathology – Cell Biology of Disease. She is currently working the lab of Jennifer Anolik, MD, PhD where she is studying the inflammatory processes in osteoarthritis.

Read more about Ms. Escalera-Rivera and the other scientists.