Friday, May 22, 2015
Sometimes when I'm having a day that's less than stellar autoimmune-wise, it's easy for me to descend into a seriously grumpy mood. This is due to lots of reasons: frustration with my body; frustration with my disease; and always frustration that there is not a cure for Sjogren's Syndrome and autoimmune diseases. Inevitably I fixate on the latter cause, since it's much easier to put blame and anger on a faceless scientific community that I assume must be sitting on their duffs not doing much of anything about our disease.
Which is not accurate. Seriously. While it is true that other diseases garner more attention and research dollars, many knowledgeable and dedicated scientists and physicians from all around the globe are working toward better treatment and hopefully a cure for Sjogren's syndrome.
Case in point: This week in Bergen, Norway, physicians, researchers, and Sjogren's patients are participating in an international gathering to share information, research, and experiences. This truly is an international event. Check out the advisory board and committee members:
Abstract topics sought during this conference include:
1. Classification criteria and new diagnostic tools
2. Preclinical disease and Sjögren’s syndrome in younger patients
3. Extraglandular manifestations
4. Classical sicca symptoms
5. Personalized and cell-based treatment
6. Patient panel (representatives for patient organizations)
7. Autoantibodies and autoantigens
8. Immune cells in Sjögren’s syndrome
9. Type I Interferons in Sjögren’s syndrome
10. Cytokine networks in Sjögren’s syndrome
11. Genetic aspects of Sjögren’s syndrome
12. Animal models for Sjögren’s syndrome
13. Systems Biology and bioinformatic approaches
14. New Biomarkers for Sjögren’s syndrome
15. Biobanks, registries and international networking
I am assuming that some kind of summary of conference presentations and abstracts will be made public, hopefully in an upcoming Sjogren's Syndrome Foundation publication such as their Sjogren's Quarterly. I'd love to learn more about personalized and cell-based treatment in particular.