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Doctor examining hand of patient with rheumatoid arthritis © SHUTTERSTOCK

Inflammation Across Tissues recognises that people often have multiple overlapping conditions which could be best treated by looking at the big picture.

Many people have more than one inflammatory condition. If you have arthritis, a gut condition, and a skin condition, you might have to have appointments with  a rheumatologist, a gastroenterologist and a dermatologist; sometimes at three different hospitals. Similar treatments like steroids are often used to treat these different conditions yet they are still investigated separately.

NDORMS researchers take a more holistic view of inflammation and aim to find common causes of the overlapping conditions that a person might have. This approach could better reflect how people experience their conditions and could lead to better treatment options. You can read more about this approach on the NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) Inflammation Across Tissues (IAT) theme page.

As we work towards a more holistic view of inflammation, in 2023, we have expanded the scope of our patient partnerships to welcome people with broader conditions. As well as partnering with patients with bone, muscle and joint conditions, we now invite patients with inflammatory joint, gut and skin conditions and their carers to bring their voices to medical research at NDORMS.

Consistent with the IAT theme, we value participation from people with multiple, overlapping musculoskeletal and/or inflammatory conditions.

case studies

The approach of looking at inflammation across tissues has led to successful projects and some really helpful outcomes. You can read about them in the following case studies: 

Finding the right treatments for different people with IBD

A-TAP: finding more uses for new drugs

TrueColours IBD: reducing hospital visits for patients in clinical trials