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Hope for chronic pain sufferers

Published Fri Apr 1st 2016

A new chronic pain research network co-led by Dr. Ian Gilron has been awarded $25 million in direct and matching funds from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

The new CIHR Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR) Chronic Pain Network represents the largest and most coordinated effort to advance knowledge and patient care for millions of Canadians suffering from this disease.

“In addition to profound personal suffering, the cost of chronic pain to society across a person’s lifespan is greater than that from cancer and heart disease combined,” Dr. Gilron says. “Canada is recognized as a world leader in pain research productivity and training, and per capita produces twice as many pain related publications as the international leader, the United States. This new Chronic Pain Network represents a unique opportunity to further advance our excellence in pain research and greatly expand research capacity in Canada.”

The Network in Chronic Disease is a trans-Canada, multidisciplinary research network that is integrated closely with the Queen’s Department of Anesthesiology & Perioperative Medicine, the Queen’s Faculty of Health Sciences and the Southeastern Ontario Academic Medical Association.

This Chronic Pain Network will conduct a variety of programs involving laboratory and clinical research studies on chronic pain to identify new treatments to manage and prevent chronic pain. The network will also examine the impact of sex, gender, and ethnic differences on chronic pain and develop more effective communication strategies and health policies to translate new research results into improved health-care outcomes.

Several network activities will be coordinated through Queen’s, led by Dr. Gilron in collaboration with Drs. Nader Ghasemlou, Elizabeth Vandenkerkhof, Scott Duggan and other investigators in the Queen’s Faculty of Health Sciences, the chronic pain clinic at Hotel Dieu Hospital and Kingston General Hospital Research Institute.

“Our group at Queen’s brings many assets to this CIHR SPOR Network including expertise in chronic pain patient care and clinical pain research, biochemical and molecular pain research methods and pain epidemiology,” Dr. Gilron says. “We also have closely functioning relationships with the Canadian Pain Society, the IMMPACT Initiative (Initiative on Methods, Measurement, and Pain Assessment in Clinical Trials) and the International Association for the Study of Pain.”

The nominated principal investigator of this multi-investigator network is Dr. Norm Buckley from McMaster University. Read more about the funding on the CIHR website.

Thursday March 31, 2016

By Anne Craig, Communications Officer