Current Research Update

State of Lupus Research (PDF)

Research Funded by Lupus Foundation of America Presented at 2012 American College of Rheumatology Meeting

Groundbreaking research funded by the Lupus Foundation of America was on prominent display recently during the 2012 American College of Rheumatology (ACR) scientific meeting in Washington, D.C.



People with Lupus Deserve Access to Full Range of Medications under Affordable Care Act

The Lupus Foundation of America is calling on the Department of Health and Human Services to ensure that people with chronic diseases, like lupus, get access to a full range of medications under the Affordable Care Act. The Foundation recently co-signed a letter urging HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to throw out guidance in the Department's essential health benefits bulletin that would allow private insurers to limit the number of medications available to patients under each drug class to just one. The letter, signed by 57 health advocacy organizations, was delivered to Secretary Sebelius in September.

Read the full letter here.


Maintaining Your Dental Health

Approximately 95 percent of people with lupus suffer from some form of oral involvement. Disregarding the importance of proper dental care can be a painful and costly error that in some cases may actually be dangerous. Learn more about managing your dental health while living with lupus.

Mouth Maintenance: Fight Tooth Decay and Gum Disease with Proper Dental Upkeep

Oral Issues with Lupus


Coping with Fatigue

As many as 80 percent of people with lupus experience fatigue. For some people with lupus, fatigue is their main symptom and can be debilitating. It is unclear why extreme fatigue occurs in so many people with lupus, but a variety of factors appear to play a role.


Archived teleconference presented by Afton Hassett, PsyD (PDF)


Clinical Trials

Physicians in your area are currently seeking volunteers to participate in two clinical research studies.

As part of the LFA's efforts to Bring Down the Barriers to discovery of more effective and tolerable treatments for lupus, the LFA is working through its Center for Clinical Trials Education and Lupus Research Registry to distribute information about clinical research studies currently seeking volunteers.

Both the ILLUMINATE research studies and the EMBODY research studies will help researchers learn more about investigational study drugs being developed for the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus.

Find out more information about EMBODY.

Find out more information about ILLUMINATE.

Read about another local clinical for cutaneous lupus at the University of Pennsylvania here.


Other Locally Funded Projects:

In partnership with the Lupus Foundation of America and its network of chapters, the Lupus Foundation of America, Philadelphia Tri-State Chapter is committed to accelerating the pace of medical discovery in lupus. Since the primary sponsors of medical research on lupus are the federal government, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, the LFA continues to expand efforts to stimulate increased public and private support of research on lupus.

In addition to these efforts, the LFA, Philadelphia Tri-State Chapter contributes to the LFA’s Five-Year Research Support Program and funds other local projects including student summer research projects through the Goldie Simon Preceptorship Awards Program.

With the support of the PA Department of Health, the LFA, Philadelphia Tri-State Chapter provided funding to Victoria Werth, M.D., for her project entitled Validation of a Cutaneous Lupus Activity and Severity Index (CLASI) Tool for Rheumatologists.


Anna Louise Harmon Memorial Preceptorship Award

Anna Louise Harmon left this world on March 10, 2011. To honor her memory, valuable contributions to the world of clinical research, and strong commitment to the support of those living with lupus, Anna’s family is pleased to present the Anna Louise Harmon Memorial Preceptorship Award. The purpose of the award is to provide funding support for a student to conduct research in lupus in the areas of basic, clinical or psychosocial research under the supervision of an established investigator. Thanks to all who contributed.

2012 Anna Louise Harmon Memorial Preceptorship Award Recipients:

Ana Patricia Costa Reis
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia/University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
MicroRNAs in the Pathogenesis of Lupus Nephritis
Preceptor: Kathleen Sullivan, M.D., Ph.D.

Andrea M. Knight
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
The Association of Depression and Anxiety with Outpatient Medical Services use in Pediatric Lupus
Ron Keren, M.D., M.P.H.


Goldie Simon Preceptorship Award

Named in honor of Goldie Simon, President Emeritus and founder of the former LFA, Philadelphia Chapter, the purpose of the Goldie Simon Preceptorship Awards Program is to foster an interest in lupus in the areas of basic, clinical or psychosocial research under the supervision of an established investigator.

Purpose: to foster an interest in lupus in the areas of basic, clinical or psychosocial research under the supervision of an established investigator.

2013 Goldie Simon Preceptorship Awards Application

2012 Goldie Simon Preceptorship Award Recipients:

Paul Gallo
Temple University
The Dendritic Cell Response to Apoptosis in Lupus
Preceptor: Stephania Gallucci, M.D.

Yunyoung G. Chang
University of Pennsylvania
The Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus Disease Area and Severity Index for Responsiveness in Mild Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus
Preceptor: Victoria Werth, M.D.

William A. Comrie
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
The Role of ICAM-1 Mobility in the Activation of T-Lymphocytes
Preceptor: Janis K. Burkhardt, Ph.D.

2011 Goldie Simon Preceptorship Award Recipients:

Lindsay M. Dittman
Temple University School of Medicine
Measurement of Circulating Levels of Mer Tyrosine Kinase in Patients with SLE
Preceptor: Philip L. Cohen, M.D.

Lisa G. Barnett
University of Pennsylvania
Contributions of Antigen Presenting Cell Subsets to Follicular Helper T Cell Formation and Function in SLE
Preceptor: Terri M. Laufler, M.D.

Irene Chernova
University of Pennsvlvania
Role of Plasma Cell Heterogeneity in Autoimmunity
Preceptor: David Michael Allman, Ph.D.

Peter Morawski
The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Cyclin Dependent Kinase Regulation of Foxp3, tolerance, and Regulatory T Cells
Preceptor: Andrew D. Wells, Ph.D.

Elizabeth R. Ghazi
University of Pennsylvania Hospital
Prevalence of Mood Disorders in Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus Patients
Preceptor: Victoria Werth, M.D.

Isabela Tollini Wieczorek
University of Pennsylvania
Incidence and Severity of System Symptoms in Patients with Cutaneous Lupus
Preceptor: Victoria Werth, M.D.


Top 10 Achievements for 2011

We are very pleased to promote our Top 10 Achievements of 2011, funded through your generous support!


National Research

Bringing Down the Barriers

It is clear that we know more about lupus than we did 10 years ago. Advances in lupus research have provided us with a better understanding of the possible underlying causes of the disease and its progression, and have provided unprecedented opportunities to expand greatly our knowledge base on lupus.

Doors are opening to new approaches for improved treatment and care. We are in a position to answer many of the questions about lupus that scientists have been asking for decades. With new scientific findings, additional pathways have been identified for further study. However, without an expansion of public and private support for medical research on lupus, many of these opportunities will be lost and further progress delayed.
Read more about the LFA's National Research Program, Bringing Down the Barriers™

Find Archived Research Summaries Here


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