ACR study groups provide an excellent forum for networking at the ACR/ARHP Annual Scientific Meeting and are among the most highly sought-after sessions each year. Although study groups are not eligible for CME credits, they provide an opportunity for the exchange of new ideas and in-depth presentations of information. These groups give attendees the opportunity to discuss cases and share experiences with colleagues who share a common interest in one disease, a group of related disorders, or a specialized field of study.
This year, ACR study groups will be held on Monday, October 27 from 6:15–7:30 p.m. and Tuesday, October 28 from 12:45–2:15 p.m. As always, a variety of topics will be offered, providing something for everyone.
Below is a sample of what will be offered at the 2008 meeting.
Monday, October 27, 6:15–7:30 p.m.
Lupus and pregnancy—translating new discoveries to management: This exciting session will focus on translating new discoveries in the bench-to-bedside management of pregnancy in women with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). This year’s session, coordinated by Jill Buyon, MD, professor of medicine in the division of rheumatology at New York University School of Medicine in New York City, will offer four major areas of discussion, each led by an expert in the field. Jane Salmon, MD, co-director of the Mary Kirkland Center for Lupus Research at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City, will discuss novel mediators of antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) associated with pregnancy complications, as well as potential markers to predict those at risk. Dr. Buyon will offer a review on the pathogenesis of congenital heart block, emphasizing a potential role of the fetal cardiocyte and subsequent inflammation and scarring. J. Lee Nelson, MD, professor of human immunogenetics at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Institute in Seattle, Wash., will address the potential influence of microchimerism in a lupus pregnancy. Finally, Joan T. Merrill, MD, program chair of the clinical pharmacology research program at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation in Oklahoma City, will end with a review of the treatments most likely to be used in lupus patients who become pregnant.
Pediatric rheumatology: Pediatric rheumatology is a rapidly advancing subspecialty, and the goal of this study group is to provide a high-quality update on the current scientific methodology being used in the treatment of pediatric patients, as well as to review of the most recent advances in the subspecialty. In addition, Lisa Rider, MD, deputy chief of the environmental autoimmunity group at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., and this year’s study group coordinator, is excited to offer a program that includes an update from Peter Gregersen, MD, director of the Eileen Ludwig Greenland Center for Rheumatoid Arthritis at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research in Manhasset, N.Y., and David Glass, MD, professor of pediatrics at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, on genome-wide association studies using high-throughput SNP array technology. This study group will offer a look at translational research of relevance to pediatric rheumatologists, while offering broad appeal to adult rheumatologists.