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Rheumatic Disorders in Siblings

Pathogenic Studies in Families with Twins or Siblings Discordant for Systemic Rheumatic Disorders

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Do you have an autoimmune disease?

A study is being conducted for families with siblings or twins in which one sibling has developed a systemic autoimmune disease and the other sibling does not have an autoimmune disease. The goal of this research study is to understand the genetic and environmental factors that may result in autoimmune diseases. Compensation is available.

Who Can Participate?

  • Participation requires siblings of the same gender — one sibling diagnosed in the last five years with adult or juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, scleroderma, or myositis, and one brother or sister who does NOT have an autoimmune disease.
  • Twins are encouraged to participate, but siblings within five years age difference may also join.

What Is Required?

  • The sibling pair is essential to participate in the study. Biological parents are also encouraged to participate.
  • You may enroll at the Clinical Center at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland; the NIEHS Clinical Research Unit in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina; or your local doctor’s office.
  • There is no charge for study-related evaluations and tests.
  • Patients remain under the care of their personal physicians while participating in this research study.

Who Is Running the Study?

The study is run by physicians at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Lead Researcher

Frederick W. Miller, M.D., Ph.D.

Frederick W. Miller, M.D., Ph.D.

Tel 984-287-3593
Learn More About Frederick W. Miller, M.D., Ph.D.

Frederick W. Miller, M.D., Ph.D. oversees researchers in his group as well as others in national and international consortia that evaluate and conduct a wide range of basic and clinical studies on adult and juvenile autoimmune diseases. His interests are broad and he wishes to understand what triggers these diseases and how to best assess, treat, cure and ultimately prevent them. He obtained his M.D. and Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University, went on to medical residencies at Emory and Stanford, and then did rheumatology and immunology training at the NIH. His work in the field of autoimmune diseases spans over three decades and involves many aspects of the phenotypes, environmental risk factors, epidemiology, immunology, genetics, pathogenesis, evaluation and treatment of immune-mediated diseases. He has focused much of his work on autoimmune muscle diseases.

Research Page

Adult Volunteers

Adam I. Schiffenbauer, M.D.

Adam Schiffenbauer, M.D. is an Associate Research Physician in the Environmental Autoimmunity Group, and an adult rheumatologist with an expertise in myositis. He received his B.A. from The University of Chicago and his M.D. from Pennsylvania State University. He completed an internal medicine residency at George Washington University, and his fellowship in rheumatology at the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD. He then joined Dr. Frederick Miller’s group in NIEHS in Bethesda, MD. Dr. Schiffenbauer’s work has been focused on environmental and genetic risk factors, phenotypes, pathogenesis, advanced imaging, evaluation, and therapeutic trials in myositis.

Pediatric Volunteers

Lisa Rider, M.D.

Lisa Rider, M.D. is Deputy Chief of the Environmental Autoimmunity Group, and a pediatric rheumatologist with an international reputation for her work on juvenile myositis. She received her B.A. and M.D. from Duke University, completed a pediatrics residency at Seattle Children’s Hospital of University of Washington, and her fellowship in pediatric rheumatology at Seattle Children’s Hospital, Children’s National Medical Center, Washington D.C. and the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD.  She then joined Dr. Frederick Miller’s group in the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration and subsequently moved to NIEHS in Bethesda, MD.  Dr. Rider’s work has been focused on environmental and genetic risk factors, phenotypes, pathogenesis, outcomes, evaluation, and therapeutic trials in juvenile myositis and other systemic pediatric rheumatic diseases. She has co-led national and international myositis collaborative research groups, and authored from than 170 research publications, reviews, books, and book chapters. She has received several awards of distinction.

Research Page

For More Information About This Study

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