Other presentations covered a variety of topics, all of which were aimed at helping improve treatment of and care for people living with rheumatic diseases. Teresa Tarrant, MD, presented updates on a novel technology that could advance treatment options for patients with RA. Directing laser light on inflamed joints could minimize the risks and side effects of current anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive treatments for RA patients. The technology delivers RA medication directly to the joint using wavelengths of light to release the medication. Ultimately, this treatment could facilitate the selective delivery of medications directly to the joint; specifically, red blood cells containing implanted molecular devices (i.e., phototherapeutic RBCs).
Explore this issueAugust 2018
It was exciting to learn more about these projects and see how much progress is being made in rheumatology research. With new discoveries and more treatment options for patients, the combined impact the attendees have in improving the lives of patients with rheumatic disease is profound.
Each year, the ACR hosts the Rheumatology Research Workshop in conjunction with the Investigators’ Meeting. The workshop is designed for rheumatology fellows, junior faculty, medical/graduate students and residents interested in learning more about how to succeed in a research career for rheumatology. The meeting includes scientific lectures, oral abstract presentations, poster sessions and ample opportunity for eager young investigators to network with established senior investigators, as well as to learn the nuances of successful grantsmanship and career development.
Specialized tracks for early and advanced investigators ensure attendees receive relevant information that is applicable and appropriate for their current career stages. The Early Investigators’ track is designed for early fellows, residents, medical and graduate students. Attendees participated in a breakout session discussing the anatomy of grants and common pitfalls of first grants, lectures about the do’s and don’ts of menteeship and questions you didn’t know you needed to ask about Academic Medicine. Established researchers led a question-and-answer session about transitioning from fellow to junior faculty.
The Advanced Investigators’ track is designed for advanced fellows, junior faculty and postdoctoral candidates. Attendees enjoyed lectures about navigating transitions as junior faculty and protecting their time, salary and percent effort. They participated in a breakout session on developing Specific Aims for grant applications and a panel discussion about job offers, relocation and negotiation led by established investigators.
Rheumatology Research Workshop attendees also presented their abstracts to established investigators to gain valuable feedback and guidance. Keynote speaker Timothy Niewold, MD, welcomed the group of eager researchers and shared his perspective on the personal career path of a successful investigator. Each session was designed to help early career investigators advance their careers by providing opportunities to improve presentation skills, obtain one-on-one advice from leading researchers and collaborate in an informal setting.