Call on sex- and gender-related research projects in RMDs

Many Rheumatic Musculoskeletal Diseases (RMDs) show gender differences with respect to their prevalence, clinical manifestation and disease course. Furthermore, sex hormones and other sex-dependent mediators are known to differentially affect the cells of the immune system as well as the musculoskeletal system, thereby affecting the pathogenesis of RMDs. In addition, sex- and or gender-related issues may affect treatment decisions and the general management of RMDs. To date, little is known about the mechanisms of how sex and gender influence RMDs.

FOREUM seeked to support projects in the following areas:

  • Influence of sex/gender on processes that influence the pathogenesis of RMDs
  • Sex-/gender-related factors that impact on the disease course, prognosis and outcomes of RMDs
  • The role of gender in optimizing the treatment of RMDs
  • Sex/gender-related differences and disparities in the management of RMDs

29 letters of intent were received, peer reviewed and thorougly evaluated. As a result, three projects are being funded.

Exploring the X-linked determinant implicated in the female susceptibility to rheumatic diseases
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Validation of sex-dependent molecular pain mechanisms in osteoarthritis
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Genetic variants associated with Sjögren’s syndrome leading to differential gene expression in males and females and functional impact on the immune system
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