We are currently enrolling participants for rheumatology studies. Read about the studies here.
Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) Studies
LEAP: Linking Exercise, Activity, and Pathophysiology in Childhood Arthritis: A Canadian Collaborative Team.
This study is looking at the relationships between physical activity, bone and muscle development and disease activity in Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis. LEAP is a Canada wide study with Dr. Lori Tucker as the principal investigator at BC Children’s Hospital. It is also the first study to look at how active children are at different levels of disease activity. For more information, check out the LEAP website or our Facebook page!
LEAP Exercise Intervention
The LEAP Exercise Intervention is a pilot study headed by Dr. Lori Tucker and Dr. Kristin Houghton at BC Children’s Hospital. The purpose of this exercise intervention is to determine if a home-based exercise program improves bone density and muscle mass in children and teens with juvenile idiopathic arthritis. This study is linked to the main LEAP study and will continue efforts to learn more about how to promote increased activity and well being in children and teens with JIA.
The PREVENT study is being headed by Dr. Dirk Foell at the University of Münster, Germany, and our pediatric rheumatology team at BCCH will be collaborators in the project. In this study, investigators will be looking at a new biomarker in the blood of children with JIA which has promise for predicting disease flares. In particular, we will be trying to determine whether this biomarker will help predict the risk of disease flare after a child with JIA is taken off medications because their disease is felt to be in clinical remission. Click here for more information on PREVENT.
The Treg Study: The Role of T Regulatory Cells in Control and Remission of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA)
Studies show that the swollen, inflamed joints seen in JIA patients may be due to the dysfunction of a certain type of white blood cell called the T regulatory cell (Treg). Tregs produce chemokines (protein signals) which attract immune cells towards them, leading to suppression of the immune response. By analyzing blood and synovial fluid, the study will examine whether this mechanism is dysfunctional in the Tregs of JIA patients and if monitoring of the mechanism could be developed into a new tool that would help predict disease remission versus disease flare. This study is led by Dr. Kimberly Morishita and Dr. Anne Pesenacker.
Cardiopulmonary Comorbidities in Systemic Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (CP in sJIA)
Headed by Dr. Kimberly Morishita, CP in sJIA is a study that examines heart and lung symptoms in children with systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis. Children with sJIA are often affected by symptoms involving other organ systems in addition to their joints. The study hopes to determine the frequency of heart/lung symptoms in children with sJIA, and determine whether these symptoms are a result of disease or a side effect of medication. Results from this study may lead to regular screening for heart and lung abnormalities in children with sJIA.
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) Studies
PedANAM: Studying the Pediatric ANAM in pSLE
Ped-Automated Neuropsychological Assessment Metrics (PedANAM) is a specialized computer program used to measure cognitive function, and has been adapted to be used in children and teens. As SLE can cause impairments in learning, thinking, and memory the PedANAM study is looking at teens with SLE to see if using this simple computer test in the routine clinic visit is feasible and can show changes in brain functioning over time. The PedANAM study is being conducted in approximately 17 hospitals in Canada and the United States. Dr. Lori Tucker heads the PedANAM study at BC Children’s Hospital.
PedVas: The Pediatric Vasculitis InitiativeCAN-Fever Registry
The PedVas study is an international study, headed by Dr. David Cabral, based at BC Children’s Hospital and includes collaborators in Canada, US, and various countries across the globe. The project is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). This study is examining childhood chronic vasculitis, a set of inflammatory diseases affecting blood vessels in body organs such as the kidneys, lungs and brain. Through the PedVas study Dr. Cabral and his colleagues hope to learn more about pediatric vasculitis and improve the diagnosing and treatment of vasculitis in children and adolescents. You can read more about PedVas on the clinicaltrials.gov website.
Compared to other diseases in kids, autoinflammatory diseases are rare and haven't been studied as much. The purpose of this registry is to develop a collection of information about autoinflammatory diseases in kids in order to better understand and better treat these diseases. Researches will be able to use the registry as a tool to help determine what sort of research questions are important to study. Children diagnosed with any type of autoinflammatory disease may be eligible for this study.
Clinical Drug Trials
Rituximab for Children with Vasculitis
This clinical trial is being conducted to learn more about a drug called Rituximab, which is being used to treat children with Granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA; also known as Wegener’s granulomatosis [WG]) and microscopic polyangiitis (MPA). The purpose of the study is to evaluate the safety and efficacy of Rituximab in these children. Children who are newly diagnosed with GPA or MPA, or who are flaring, are eligible to participate in this study. You can read more about this trial on the clinicaltrials.gov site.
The Abatacept Registry study is being conducted at over 90 research centres all over the world to learn more about the long-term safety of the medication Abatacept (Orencia) and to see if it has good or bad effects on JIA. Patients who have been diagnosed with JIA and are taking Abatacept are eligible to participate in this study.
Upcoming Research Studies
Recruitment for these studies will start in the near future. Talk to any member of the research team to find out more information and see if you are eligible to join!Tofacitinib for Children with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis
This clinical trial is being conducted to study a new drug called Tofacitinib. We want to determine how safe and effective it is in children with Juvenile Iidiopathic Arthritis compared to placebo (a compound that looks like Tofacitinib but has no active medicine in it). Children who are diagnosed with Oligoarthritis (extended), Polyarthritis, Systemic JIA, Psioratic arthritis, or Enthesitis-related arthritis may be eligible to participate in this study. You can read more about the study on clinicaltrials.gov.