One Italian (AMRER) and two Spanish (FEP and LIRE) associations of patients are involved as patient research partners (PRPs). EULAR guidelines for Patient Research Partners (PRP) inclusion have been followed. We have discussed the design of the project and the burden for patients with the PRPs integrating their feedback. PRPs are involved in all phases of the project.
Patients with GCA subjected to a biopsy of temporal artery for diagnosis, performing different kinds of molecular analyses on the inflamed tissue biopsies (RN sequencing, DNA methylation and proteomics) were recruited. Patients receive a therapy with glucocorticoids or glucocorticoids plus tocilizumab according to the physicians' evaluation and clinical practice and are followed up to 78 weeks. Molecular profile is compared between patients who experience relapses and patients who effectively respond to therapy and between patients with different clinical manifestations.
It's expected to provide tools to select the likely most effective therapy for each patient right from the time of diagnosis, with a positive impact on patients' quality of life: lower recurrences of symptoms, less adverse effects from therapy and higher likelihood to achieve remission.