Taking Part In Research

See below for opportunities to take part in psoriasis research, or to share your experiences. Please note that these projects are not run by the Psoriasis Association, but by external parties such as academic research departments.

If the opportunities below do not match the type of project you are looking to be involved in, you can also take a look at 'Be Part of Research', which is run by the National Institute for Health Research and will give you lots of information about taking part in clinical trials and allow you to search for a relevant trial in your area.

An online survey for a visual study of psoriasis

Sarah Etty is a Psoriasis Association-funded PhD student at the University of Hull, investigating the cognitive processes behind itch and psoriasis.

She is hoping to recruit participants with a diagnosis of psoriasis for an online survey that will decide on the stimuli she will present to participants in further experiments. This survey requires participants to rate stimuli (words) on how well they represent their experiences of psoriasis, using a scale.

The survey is completely anonymous, participation voluntary, and could help towards the development of interventions for health conditions characterised by itch. Please be aware that in order to take part you must have a diagnosis of psoriasis.

To find out more and to take part, please click here

Alternatively, email s.etty-2018@hull.ac.uk for further information.

An interview study about people's experiences of living with psoriasis

A researcher from the Centre for Appearance Research, based at the University of the West of England, is looking to hear about the experiences of adults (aged 16+) who are living with psoriasis as part of a Psoriasis Association funded study.

If you choose to take part, you would share your experiences with the researcher in an informal one-to-one telephone interview.

Click here to register your interest in taking part

If you have any questions or would like to find out more, please contact Ella Guest, either by phone on 0117 32 87045 or by email at ella.guest@uwe.ac.uk.

Help test an online support programme for people with conditions which affect their appearance

Researchers at the Centre for Appearance Research, based at the University of the West of England, are looking for volunteers to test a new online programme that helps people view themselves more positively.

The online programme is designed for adults with conditions that affect how they look, such as psoriasis, and encourages people to focus on what their bodies can do, rather than how they look. It involves completing three short writing tasks over 5 days.

As a thank you for taking part, participants will be entered into a £150 prize draw.

If you would like to take part, or want to find out more, please contact Ella Guest from the Centre for Appearance Research either by email at ella.guest@uwe.ac.uk or by phone on 0117 32 87045.

Psoriasis & the online support group: An exploration of user experiences

A researcher at the University of Surrey is looking to speak to people who are living with psoriasis and are interested in sharing their experiences as a member of an online support group.

The study aims to explore the self-reported experiences of people with psoriasis who use online support groups as a means of communicating with others.

In order to take part, you must be aged 18 years or over; have a diagnosis of psoriasis; and use an online support group for people living with psoriasis (this includes Facebook groups).

The study will require participants to answer a series of questions in a Skype interview. The interview will last for roughly 40 minutes and your responses will be audio recorded. All participants will need access to Skype, although phone interviews may be conducted for anybody who is not able to access Skype.

If you would like to take part in this study, please contact the Lead Researcher, Simone Mitchell on sm00566@surrey.ac.uk for further details.

The study has been reviewed and received a Favourable Ethical Opinion (FEO) from the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences Ethics Committee at the University of Surrey.  

Optimising Treatment Strategy in Psoriasis

It is important to have ‘patient’ and public input at an early stage of planning a research study. This is so that researchers can be sure that what they are researching, and the way that they are researching it, meets the needs of real people.

This is an opportunity to give feedback on a psoriasis research proposal. The researcher is a Dermatology Specialist Registrar, Dr Satveer Mahil, who works at the St John’s Institute of Dermatology, and was recently awarded the prestigious Royal Society of Medicine’s Wesleyan Trainee of the Year Award. You can read a short description of Dr Mahil’s research proposal by clicking here.

If you would like to learn more about Dr Mahil's research study, and give your feedback, please click here to complete a short survey.

PLUM - A research project looking at the causes of pustular psoriasis

The clinical research team under Professor Catherine Smith at St John’s Institute of Dermatology, Guy’s Hospital, London, in collaboration with Dr Francesca Capon’s group at King’s College London (Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics) are running a research project looking at the potential causes of pustular psoriasis.

The PLUM clinical research team

The observational research study is known as PLUM (Pustular psoriasis, elucidating underlying mechanisms) and is looking for patients with a diagnosis of pustular psoriasis to take part at centres around the country. More info can be found here

The study involves collecting data and clinical samples from patients at one study visit, with the option for recall to a couple of additional visits for further samples within the following 1-2 years. 

Dr Capon explains why they are conducting the study: 

What is the objective of our research? 
The main aim of our research is to identify genetic changes that lead to the onset of pustular psoriasis. We have already identified a small number of genes that are malfunctioning in pustular psoriasis patients and these discoveries have taught us a great deal about the causes of the disease. We therefore believe that identifying additional pustular psoriasis genes will shed further light on disease mechanisms and help the development of much needed treatments. 

Why are we collecting blood samples? 
Blood cells are a source of both DNA and RNA (a molecule that is similar to DNA, but is only produced from genes that are active at a given moment). Comparing the DNA of affected and unaffected individuals can help us uncover genetic differences that are associated with the disease. Likewise, comparing the RNAs of patients and controls can show us which genes are abnormally active in affected individuals. 

Why are we collecting skin samples? 
Pustular psoriasis mostly affects skin. This is therefore the tissue from which we can learn the most about disease mechanisms. For this reason, we are planning to compare blood samples with skin samples from affected individuals and healthy controls. 

PLUM is open at a number of centres around the country. If you are interested in finding out more, please visit our webpage or contact us at dermatologytrials@gstt.nhs.ukb

APRICOT- A clinical trial to test a new treatment for palmo-plantar pustulosis

Palmo-plantar pustulosis (PPP) is a form of pustular psoriasis which occurs on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. Recent research has shown that PPP may be caused by an abnormal pathway in the body's immune system, involving a protein called interleukin-1 (IL-1). The medication being tested - anakinra - specifically blocks this IL-1 pathway, and this clinical trial sets out to test if it therefore improves PPP.

As well as testing anakinra as a potential new treatment for PPP, this trial also hopes to collect information from participants that will help to explain why and how people get PPP. 

The APRICOT study is still looking for new participants to start as soon as possible! APRICOT is currently open at centres in Bradford, Bristol, Broomfield Hospital (Essex), Cambridge, Cardiff, Derby, Dudley, Dundee, Exeter, Glasgow, Harlow, Lancaster, Liverpool, London, Newcastle, Norwich, Nottingham, Poole, and Salford.

Additionally, trial participants who have already completed the 8 week treatment period schedule, as well as the 12 week follow-up visit, can now take part in an optional 8 week period of anakinra treatment, as an Open Label Extension (OLE) to the trial.

For more information on APRICOT, including how to take part in the clinical trial, please visit the study's website.

The Psoriasis Association is the UK's leading national charity and membership organisation for people affected by psoriasis – patients, families, carers and health professionals Read More >

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