Alopecia areata is a disease characterized by hair loss that affects 6.5 million Americans of all ages, races and ethnicities. It occurs more frequently in people who have affected family members, suggesting heredity and genetics are a factor in disease occurrence. The profound effects of the disease are physical, social and psychological. The National Alopecia Areata Foundation (NAAF) is a nonprofit organization that supports research to find a cure or acceptable treatment for alopecia areata, supports those with the disease, and educates the public about alopecia areata. This summit is central to the research mission of the Foundation: bringing together investigators from relevant specialties around the world to distill learning from previous research advances and determine future priorities. NAAF uses these priorities to evaluate research proposals and make grant funding decisions. The long-term objective is a safe, effective, affordable treatment or a cure for alopecia areata. This research summit is planned for December 4-5, 2014 in Bethesda, MD. The summit will bring together esteemed researchers representing genetics, immunology, related autoimmune diseases like type 1 diabetes, dermatology and other fields including phototherapy. Summit objectives are to: 1) review new knowledge;2) identify and prioritize promising new needed research;3) develop plans and facilitate partnerships;and 4) publish meeting results to share findings. Inclusion of women, minorities, and people with disabilities is a priority so we draw on a broad and balanced field of knowledge. We encourage early-career investigators to join us and bring fresh ideas and new talent. Attendees with alopecia areata will ensure that the patient perspective is heard and considered in the prioritization process. The design of this research summit is two days combining a series of short presentations with expansive discussion facilitated by each participant having a microphone. Key findings are periodically summarized by senior researchers and co-chairs will lead presenters and participants to collectively analyze findings and recommend new research priorities and partnerships. Our method of enabling researchers to hear findings across multiple disciplines and engage in substantive Q&A and discussion fosters innovation and collaboration.

Public Health Relevance

If this research summit achieves the long-term goal of leading to a safe, affordable treatment or cure for alopecia areata, the public health burden for the 6.5 Million Americans living with this disease will be reduced or eliminated.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
Conference (R13)
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Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases Special Grants Review Committee (AMS)
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Cibotti, Ricardo
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National Alopecia Areata Foundation
San Rafael
United States
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Bulock, Karen G; Cardia, James P; Pavco, Pamela A et al. (2015) Diphencyprone Treatment of Alopecia Areata: Postulated Mechanism of Action and Prospects for Therapeutic Synergy with RNA Interference. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:16-8
Frelinger, Jeffrey A (2015) Big Data, Big Opportunities, and Big Challenges. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:33-5
Sundberg, John P; McElwee, Kevin; Brehm, Michael A et al. (2015) Animal Models for Alopecia Areata: What and Where? J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:23-6
Katikaneni, Ranjitha; Seymour, Andrew W; Gulati, Rohan et al. (2015) Therapy for Alopecia Areata in Mice by Stimulating the Hair Cycle with Parathyroid Hormone Agonists Linked to a Collagen-Binding Domain. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:13-5
Kachlany, Scott C (2015) Mechanisms of LtxA (Leukotoxin), a Potent New Anti-Inflammatory Agent for the Treatment of Alopecia Areata. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:19-22
Norris, David A (2015) Overview of AA and Research Progress: What Have We Learned and Where Are We Headed? J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:6-8
Sundberg, John P; Dadras, Soheil S; Silva, Kathleen A et al. (2015) Excavating the Genome: Large-Scale Mutagenesis Screening for the Discovery of New Mouse Models. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:27-9
Bertolini, Marta; Uchida, Youhei; Paus, Ralf (2015) Toward the Clonotype Analysis of Alopecia Areata-Specific, Intralesional Human CD8+ T Lymphocytes. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:9-12
Sette, Alessandro; Paul, Sinu; Vaughan, Kerrie et al. (2015) The Use of the Immune Epitope Database to Study Autoimmune Epitope Data Related to Alopecia Areata. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:36-41
Wagner, Amanda T (2015) Industry Perspective on Alopecia Areata. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc 17:67-9

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