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Clinical therapy research, inflammatory diseases (ClinTRID) is a new unit at Karolinska Institutet with offices at the Karolinska University Hospital. The unit consists of a professor and chief, researchers with clinical and preclinical backgrounds, graduate students and a unit administrator. We have special expertise in registry studies, clinical trials, medicine, nutrition and molecular biology, with experience in the conducting productive collaborations, and an ability to coordinate and maintain long-term projects. In addition, we ensure that we remain at the forefront through continuous education.

Inflammatory diseases

Chronic inflammatory diseases, which can also be called systemic diseases or autoimmune diseases, can cause major damage to body tissues, with effects on individual organ function and sometimes even the whole body. What causes a chronic inflammation is not entirely clear, although there are indications that some genetic backgrounds and/or environmental factors may be a trigger. But it is clear that people with chronic inflammatory diseases tend to undergo great suffering because of symptoms caused by inflammation but also because of constant medication and side effects from medications. Although there has recently been significant progress in the therapy field, even today there are few patients for whom treatment is 100 per cent effective.

Goals and future

We are an innovative unit that intends to achieve our goals through clear focus and targeted partnerships. In the current situation, we have close collaborations with the rheumatology clinic at Karolinska University Hospital and the Rheumatology Unit at Karolinska Institutet, but also with medical specialists in gastroenterology, dermatology, and neurology, and with the Theme Center Inflammation. In time, we look forward to also working with many different specialists in the context of the New Karolinska Hospital (NKS) in Solna. We aim to answer questions in treatment research through professional multidisciplinary collaborations. Our tools are prospective clinical trials and observational, often register-based studies, modern imaging with ultrasound, and access to new laboratory techniques through collaborations with research laboratories and research-oriented companies. We analyze effectiveness and safety of various treatments and treatment strategies, as well as gender aspects of treatments and the increasingly important field of health economics. The long-term objective of our research is to find answers that may help to treat inflammatory diseases in a more optimized and personalized manner, and in due course, to prevent diseases and to approach the possibility of curing some patients.

Research projects

Project Description Contact Person

Nordic randomized clinical trial in early RA. Initial 4-way randomization (conventional vs 3 biologics); re-randomization for patients in remission to immediate vs delayed step-down therapy (800 patients).

Monica Rydén Aulin

NORD-STAR ultrasound

Follow-up of disease activity using musculoskeletal ultrasound in patients with early rheumatoid arthritis Yogan Kisten


Nordic randomized trial in early RA for patients in LDA, immediate vs delayed step-down therapy (400 patients) Monica Rydén Aulin


International registry  (>400).

Monica Rydén Aulin


International prospective registry, Projected: 2.000).

Monica Rydén Aulin

RING trial

European randomized clinical trial with rituximab in refractory SLE nephritis (200)

Peter Westerling


European randomized clinical trial with rituximab in new-onset SLE nephritis 200)

Peter Westerling

MUSCARA: ultrasound support in choice of therapy

Prospective Swedish collaborative project (120)

Hamed Rezaei

RHEUMASCAN (fluorescence optical imaging, FOI)

Feasibility study of new diagnostic tool ( Oblique views and PsA skin imaging), Digital Activity Quantification (DACT-FOI) 

Erik af Klint

RHEUMASCAN (diagnostic utility of FOI)

The diagnostic utility of FOI in early RA

Adrian Levitsky

SWEFOT long-term follow-up

5-year clinical, radiological, and health-economic evaluation

Ronald van Vollenhoven

SWEFOT Biomarkers

Biomarkers in early RA, in collaboration with Crescendo (487).

Karen Hambardzumyan

SWEFOT omics

Biomarkers in early RA, in collaboration with Per-Johan Jakobsson

Karen Hambardzumyan

SWEFOT Auto-antibodies

Investigation of drug influence on autoantibody profile and to reveal predictors of response to different therapies (Collaboration with PROTAGEN and Prof. M Schneider Karen Hambardzumyan


International GWAS collaboration through Mayo Clinic

Ronald van Vollenhoven


Collaboration with Vappu Rantalaiho and colleagues in Finland.

Ronald van Vollenhoven

SWEFOT Adipokines

Adipokines in early RA, extension study.

Adrian Levitsky

ACPA fine specificity/biomarkers

Antibody profiling, 65 markers

Saedis Saevarsdottir

Diet and treatment results in RA and SLE

800 RA cases from EIRA & 114 SLE cases from SLEVIC

Cecilia Lourdudoss

Diet and pain in RA

1.296 RA cases from EIRA

Cecilia Lourdudoss

Dietary changes after RA diagnosis

130 RA cases from SMC

Cecilia Lourdudoss

Diet and plaque in SLE

114 SLE cases from SLEVIC

Cecilia Lourdudoss


Certolizumab in RA, ARTIS registry study(400)

Katerina Chatzidionysiou

Review health-economic registry studies in Nordic countries

Literature review

Heather Miller

Health-economic studies of data from SWEFOT, DOSERA and other trials

Health-economic data analysis and modeling

Heather Miller

Rituximab long-term follow-up

Follow-up of rituximab treated patients with SLE

Ronald van Vollenhoven

SLE pattern study -  Collaboration with Hopkins Lupus Centre

A retrospective descriptive analysis of the Hopkins Lupus cohort to discern and describe SLE disease activity patterns over time. (2000 patients)

Noémi Györi

Kaltenborn mobilization and ultrasound study

Utilization of Kaltenborn manual mobilization for pain and Doppler reduction in patients with RA.

Adrian Levitsky

Definition of Remission in SLE (DORIS).

International consensus finding followed by analyses.

Noémi Györi

Glucocorticoid side effects.

Post-hoc analysis of BLISS dataset.

Ronald van Vollenhoven

MRI in patients with SpA

Analysis of MRI findings in sacroiliac joints of patients with SpA (47 patients)

Francesca Faustini
BASMI predicting therapy respons

Analysis of the role of the BASMI in predicting therapy response in SpA. (77 patients)

Francesca Faustini

HITHARD/Guepard meta-analysis

Systematic literature review and meta-analysis of randomized trials on induction-maintenance strategies for RA.

Sharzad Emamikia








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