NPF-Funded Research

Prediction of Psoriatic Arthritis in New Onset Psoriasis Using Data from the Stockholm Psoriasis Cohort (SPC-PSA)

Axel Svedbom

Principal Investigator: Axel Svedbom, Ph.D.
Karolinska Institutet

Grant Mechanism: Early Career Research Grant
Funding Amount: $49,996
Project Start Date: August 1, 2023
Project End Date: July 31, 2024
Status: Active
Keywords: Psoriatic Arthritis, Psoriasis, Clinical Research, Epidemiology, Multi-omics, Clinical Research

Project Summary:

Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is an inflammatory joint disease affecting approximately 30% of all patients with psoriasis. Early detection and treatment of PsA improves the disease course and a delay in diagnosis by as little as six months results in lower treatment response. However, detection of PsA is often delayed and the average time from onset to diagnosis is 2.5 years. We intend to analyze data from the Stockholm Psoriasis Cohort (SPC), a study that followed patients over ten years from first onset of psoriasis. The study has very detailed data on genetics, biomarkers, skin and joint symptoms, lifestyle factors, and comorbidities for 753 patients. Applying novel statistical learning techniques to data from the SPC affords a unique opportunity to derive a predictive algorithm for the development of PsA at psoriasis onset. Such an algorithm would allow for earlier detection of PsA, improving long-term outcomes for patients with this potentially debilitating disease.

How will your project help improve the lives of the 125 million affected by psoriatic disease?

The primary objective of this study is to identify patients at high risk of psoriatic arthritis (PsA). Currently, PsA is underdiagnosed and undertreated, resulting in unnecessary pain and suffering. Furthermore, delayed treatment is associated with worse long-term prognosis. Developing an algorithm that identifies patients at high risk of PsA would allow the health care system to monitor these patients and act immediately upon onset of the disease, improving quality of life and long-term outcomes for patients. Furthermore, it may also be possible to prevent PsA by intervening before PsA onset and this project would help furthering this hypothesis by identifying candidate patients in which to study this hypothesis.

Why is psoriatic disease research important to you, personally? What role will this award play in your research efforts or career development?

I have worked with psoriasis for ten years and have understood the multi-faceted impact the disease can have on those who suffer from it. Therefore, doing research that can improve management of the disease and its consequences is very important to me. From a research perspective this award will help me start the first phase of a broader research program that aims to use similar approaches to identify patients with psoriasis at high risk of other negative outcomes such as severe skin disease, depression, and cardiovascular disease. Identifying patients at risk of negative outcomes early will help guide prevention efforts and therefore improve long­term outcomes for patients.

Researcher Profile:

Axel Svedbom, Ph.D., MSc, is based in Stockholm, Sweden. Dr. Svedbom completed his Ph.D. in register-based research in psoriasis in 2021. Thereafter his research has focused on understanding the clinical course of psoriasis and the causal mechanisms underlying the associations between psoriasis and other diseases such as cardiovascular disease, depression, and inflammatory bowel disease. In terms of methods, his research focuses on integrating data from the lab, patients, clinicians, and population-based registers. Dr Svedbom has published papers in JAMA Dermatology, Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, Journal of Investigative Dermatology, and the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology. In his spare time, he spends time with his three kids and tries to give input to his wife's novels.

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