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BritPACT

British Psoriatic Arthritis Consortium



joined 2 years, 10 months ago

Neil McHugh

Consultant Rheumatologist, Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases (RNHRD), Bath, UK; Professor of Pharmacoepidemiology, University of Bath, UK

Professor Neil McHugh graduated from Otago University Medical School, Dunedin, New Zealand, and completed physician training before specialising in the subspecialty of rheumatology. He has undertaken research fellowships at the Walter and Eliza Hall in Melbourne, Australia (1985), Yale University Medical School, USA (1990–1991), and the National Heart and Lung Institute, UK (2002–2004).

Professor McHugh has been a Consultant Rheumatologist at the RNHRD since 1991, and Professor of Pharmacoepidemiology at the University of Bath since 2013. His current interests include the serology of idiopathic inflammatory myositis, scleroderma, lupus and juvenile idiopathic arthritis. His laboratory group offers specialist autoimmune serology at the University of Bath, leads on a major European study of adult and juvenile idiopathic myositis, and has identified a number of novel diagnostic autoantibody biomarkers.

Professor McHugh also leads a programme of work related to psoriatic disease, including a National Institute for Health Research programme grant related to the early detection and optimisation of outcome measures in psoriatic arthritis. He has led on successive British Society for Rheumatology guidelines for biologics in psoriatic arthritis, and has been involved in National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and other international guidelines for psoriatic disease.


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joined 2 years, 11 months ago

Jon Packham

Honorary Senior Lecturer in Rheumatology, Keele University, Stoke on Trent, UK; Consultant Rheumatologist, Haywood Hospital, Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Partnership (SSoTP) NHS Trust,

Dr Jon Packham BM, FRCP, DM is currently honorary Senior Lecturer in Rheumatology at Keele University, Stoke on Trent UK and Consultant Rheumatologist at the Haywood Hospital for the Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Partnership (SSoTP) NHS Trust, with specialist interests in spondyloarthropathy and juvenile idiopathic arthritis.

Previous and current appointments include: member of the Heberden Committee at the British Society for Rheumatology (BSR), member of BSR Council, West Midlands regional BSR chair, vice chair for the BSR biologics registries subcommittee, member of the National Integrated Care working group, medical advisor for JIA to National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society, member of NICE guideline development groups ‘Spondyloarthropathies’ and ‘Depression in chronic disease’, BSR national gout audit co-lead, secretary for the British Society for Paediatric and Adolescent Rheumatology (BSPAR) and rheumatology regional specialist advisor for the Royal College of Physicians.

Dr Packham is a member of Arthritis Research UK Spondyloarthropathy clinical studies group and founder member of BRIT-PACT. He is associate medical director of research for SSoTP NHS trust and an active member of the Keele Haywood Rheumatology Academic Group, working closely with the Arthritis Research UK Primary Care Centre at Keele University. Current and past research: psychological outcomes in inflammatory arthritis, quality of life and fatigue in spondyloarthropathy, long term outcomes in juvenile arthritis, treatment paradigms for psoriatic arthritis and spondyloarthropathy, biomarkers for disease outcome in inflammatory arthritis and community based studies of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.


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joined 2 years, 11 months ago

Bruce Kirkham

Consultant Rheumatologist, Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, London, and Professor of Translational Rheumatology, Kings College London

Professor Kirkham is a Consultant Rheumatologist at Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, London, and Professor of Translational Rheumatology, King's College London.

Professor Kirkham qualified as a doctor in New Zealand, then undertook his postgraduate rheumatology training at Guy’s Hospital, London. After working at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research in Melbourne, Australia, in 1991 he became a Consultant Rheumatologist in Adelaide and Sydney. His work focussed on clinical trials of new treatments and investigation of immune mechanisms, in particular IL-17 pathways, in inflammatory arthritis.

He was appointed to Guy’s & St. Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust in 2000. In 2001 he was co-CI of the first study of infliximab in psoriatic arthritis. He set up a dedicated service to optimise care of patients with rheumatoid and psoriatic arthritis which received the British Society of Rheumatology inaugural Outstanding Best Practice Award in 2013. A close working relationship with the St John’s Institute of Dermatology, the largest centre for psoriasis in southern England is integral to this service, with a large patient group. In 2016, his team was named by GRAPPA as one of seven international best practice centres. His translational research is focussed on IL-17/23 immunology and best practice in inflammatory arthritis.


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joined 2 years, 11 months ago

Ellie Korendowych

Consultant Rheumatologist and Clinical Lead for Rheumatology

Dr Korendowych is a Consultant Rheumatologist and Clinical Lead for Rheumatology at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases in Bath. She undertook her medical training at Cambridge and Oxford Universities. She was appointed as a Consultant at the RNHRD in Bath in 2005. She became Clinical Lead for the Rheumatology Unit in 2007 and was appointed as Medical Director of the RNHRD in 2014. Dr Korendowych’s main clinical and research interests are in Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) and the Autoimmune Connective Tissue Disorders especially Lupus.

Dr Korendowych was awarded an Arthritis Research Campaign Travelling Fellowship to undertake a PhD in Australia in 2001-2003. In 2004 she was awarded her PhD by the University of Bath for ‘An Immunogenetic Study of Psoriatic Arthritis’. She has published widely on PsA and has led national workshops on the clinical assessment of PsA. She is a member of the International Consortium of experts in PsA known as GRAPPA (Group for Research and Assessment of Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis). She is a member and former Steering Group founding member of PAGE (PsA Genetics European Consortium) which facilitates collaborative research across Europe into the Genetics of PsA. She is a founder member of BRIT-PACT (British PsA Consortium). She is a medical advisor for the Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis Alliance. She undertakes Clinical trials in PsA and contributes to a number of non-commercial research programmes at the RNHRD in Bath on outcome measures, genetics, biomarkers and biologics in PsA. She is the National Expert for NICE appraisals for biologics in PsA for the British Society of Rheumatology. In 2007, she established one of the first dedicated PsA biologics clinics in the country which attracts referrals from around the UK. Her main areas of expertise are in biologic therapy, outcome measures and assessment, co-morbidities and the immunogenetics of PsA.

Dr Korendowych also leads the Lupus service at the RNHRD and developed a dedicated Lupus clinic to assess outcome measures and co-morbidities in patients with Lupus. In 2015, Dr Korendowych and her team were recognised as a Lupus Centre of Excellence by Lupus UK.


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joined 2 years, 11 months ago

Philip Helliwell

Associate Professor in Rheumatology, University of Leeds, UK; Honorary Consultant Rheumatologist, Leeds Teaching Hospitals and Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Philip Helliwell is currently Associate Professor in Rheumatology at the University of Leeds, UK, and Honorary Consultant Rheumatologist for the Leeds Teaching Hospitals and Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.

Dr Helliwell qualified in Oxford in 1972 and worked initially in London before returning to work in his native Yorkshire in medical physics. After a period working in Australia and New Zealand he returned in 1985 to Leeds to join Prof Verna Wright and to work on psoriatic arthritis and biomechanics.

Dr Helliwell is a member of ASAS (Assessment of Spondyloarthropathy Society) and co-founder and President of the Group for Research and Assessment of Psoriasis and Psoriatic arthritis (GRAPPA). He established and led the CASPAR study for classification of psoriatic arthritis. He has worked with GRAPPA in developing single and composite outcome measures in psoriatic arthritis and completed the first treat to target strategy study (TICOPA) in early psoriatic arthritis.

He is co-founder and co-lead for the Bradford (University) Diploma in Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Medicine and is an active member of the Bradford and Airedale Musculoskeletal Alliance, a tier 2 service provided to GPs in the designated geographical area.

Dr Helliwell is co-founder of the Leeds foot and ankle studies group and has published widely on foot and ankle problems in inflammatory arthritis including rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis. He has contributed to several guidelines on management of foot and ankle problems in the UK.

Dr Helliwell has published over 300 peer reviewed papers. Current and past research in psoriatic arthritis includes treatment paradigms, clinical features and classification of psoriatic arthritis and community based studies of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. He has also published on biomechanics of joints, gait assessment and foot disorders in inflammatory and non-inflammatory arthritis, and epidemiology of rheumatic diseases.


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joined 2 years, 12 months ago

Oliver Fitzgerald

Newman Clinical Research Professor; Consultant Rheumatologist

Professor Oliver FitzGerald is a Consultant Rheumatologist at St Vincent's University Hospital, and a Newman Clinical Research Professor at the Conway Institute, UCD.

Professor FitzGerald has published over 240 peer-reviewed papers, many on the subject of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. His main research interests in psoriatic arthritis include clinical and therapeutic studies; the development of novel imaging techniques for measuring synovial or entheseal inflammation, including ultrasound and MRI; analysis of synovial and skin cellular and cytokine profiles; and more recently, studies of gene and protein expression in diseased tissue. He currently receives research-funding support from the Irish Health Research Board and a number of pharmaceutical companies.

Professor FitzGerald has served on a number of editorial boards. He is a council member of the Group for Research and Assessment in Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis (GRAPPA) and a member of both the European Synovitis Study Group and the Assessment of SpondyloArthritis international Society (ASAS). As a GRAPPA member and in his work with the Outcome Measures in Rheumatology Clinical Trials (OMERACT) group, he is leading the effort to develop soluble biomarkers in psoriatic arthritis.


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joined 3 years, 6 months ago

Stefan Siebert

Clinical Senior Lecturer in Rheumatology

Dr Siebert is a Clinical Senior Lecturer in Inflammation and Rheumatology at the Institute of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation at the University of Glasgow. He also works as Honorary Consultant Rheumatologist in the Glasgow Royal Infirmary, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde where he runs specialist psoriatic arthritis clinics.

Dr Siebert leads the spondyloarthritis and psoriatic arthritis clinical research programme in Glasgow, and leads on a numbers of national and regional investigator led studies. He is also involved in studies investigating underlying disease mechanisms and new therapies in rheumatoid arthritis. He is the current chair of the Arthritis Research UK Progress Review Committee, on the Executive Steering committees of both BRIT-SpA and BRIT-PACT (British SpA and PsA societies, respectively) and member of GRAPPA and ASAS.


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joined 3 years, 6 months ago

Laura Coates

NIHR Clinician Scientist and Senior Clinical Research Fellow

Dr Laura Coates joined the Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences (NDORMS), Oxford in 2017 as an National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) Clinician Scientist to research optimal therapeutic strategies for patients with psoriatic arthritis (PsA).

Laura is establishing a new psoriatic arthritis service in Oxford to see if a more practical version of ‘treat to target’, an approach where a patient’s treatment is increased regularly until a target was achieved can be run successfully in a routine NHS Clinic. Laura developed this approach to the condition when conducting the Tight Control of Psoriatic Arthritis (TICOPA) clinical study, which found that the ‘treat to target’ improves patients’ outcomes.

Laura is also testing different treatment options in an attempt to personalise care. She expects to discover whether patients with mild (PsA) can be treated successfully without more powerful arthritis drugs, and thereby avoid side effects. And also to discover whether patients with a severe form of the condition, do better if they start on stronger arthritis drugs.

Laura completed her rheumatology training and her PhD at the University of Leeds in the Leeds Institute of Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Medicine. Her PhD focused on the development and validation of the minimal disease activity criteria for PsA, which she established in the TICOPA study.

Laura’s research is clinical and focuses on psoriatic arthritis and the spondyloarthritides including early diagnosis of PsA, development of PsA, specific and validated outcome measures, optimal treatment pathways and strategies in PsA. Laura has developed and validated screening questionnaires to identify PsA. She has experience in outcome measurement, and has been involved in the development and validation of novel clinical and imaging outcome measures.

Laura is the first author of the TICOPA study. This is the first study to address treating to target in PsA, and improved clinical and patient reported outcomes. In 2011 Laura’s publications and their impact was recognized and she was awarded one of eight UK Scopus Young Investigator Awards. In 2012 she obtained the University of Leeds Women of Achievement Award.

Laura is a member of the Steering Committee of the Group for Research and Assessment of Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis (GRAPPA) and the British Psoriatic Arthritis Consortium (Brit-PACT). She is the first author on the 2015 GRAPPA treatment recommendations for psoriasis and PsA, and is also involved in the GRAPPA/OMERACT (Outcome Measures in Rheumatology) initiative to refine the core set of outcome measures for PsA.


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joined 6 years, 2 months ago

Sonya Abraham

Head Clinical and Scientific Strategic planning and process, UCB Celltech

Dr. Abraham is a general physician and rheumatologist. Her clinical interests include inflammatory arthritis namely psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis.

Dr. Abraham has been a consultant physician at Imperial and is the current Head of Clinical and Scientific strategic planning and process at UCB Celltech, which she joined in 2018 as Medical Director, Head of New Treatment Strategies Immunology.

She is an expert in the early diagnosis and treatment of these conditions. Additionally, she has expertise in treating patients whose disease remains active despite conventional disease modifying medication including biologics. Her clinical research interests help to inform her decision making in helping to tailor and monitor response to treatments using clinical, biochemical and imaging measures

She undertook her medical training in London, Oxford and Cambridge.

She was a Clinical Lecturer at the Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology and undertook her PhD, as a Wellcome Clinical Training Fellow, examining the effect of glucocorticoids on pro-inflammatory intracellular signalling.

Her novel finding was that a Dual Specificity Phosphatase (DUSP1) renders partial glucocorticoid resistance (J Exp Med 2006).

Dr. Abraham has successfully co-supervised MD and clinical PhD students in experimental translational inflammatory arthritis. These students presented their work at international meetings and have been awarded prestigious prizes.

She has been the Rheumatology academic clinical fellow (ACF) lead at Imperial and successfully facilitated the creation of the first ACF in London. She was also Lead for Undergraduate Year 5 Rheumatology education at Imperial and an Arthritis Research UK student mentor.

She has been awarded grants from STeLi for “Patient-centric Education” and “Joint examination and injection simulation education”.

Additionally, she is engaged in a number of Public and Patient engagement initiatives to help understanding the needs and value of biomedical research.

Dr. Abraham is committed to nurturing and supporting future academic rheumatologists and training future clinical rheumatologists to help lead/support clinical research.


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