Full project description ESR 2

ESR 2: Clinical studies of treating-to-target in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus

PhD research


Dr Ronald van Vollenhoven

PI | Professor and Chair | MD PhD

Amsterdam Rheumatology and immunology Center (ARC)

Rheumatology & Clinical Immunology

Location AMC | D3-220 | Meibergdreef 9 1105 AZ Amsterdam

T: +31205668998  |  E: r.vanvollenhoven@amsterdamumc.nl


Duration: 48 months


Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an uncommon chronic autoimmune disease of unknown etiology. In the majority of affected individuals the disease is chronic with a life-long need for treatment, and despite treatment outcomes have been disappointing. An expert panel has recommended that treatment should be based on the T2T principle in order to obtain better outcomes, but to demonstrate this formally, a randomized clinical trial is needed. 


Patients with SLE will be recruited through our outpatient clinics and through referrals. The ESR will work on the design of the clinical trial, including developing the structure of the trial, seeking input from all stakeholders (including patients), formatting according to standard protocols, obtaining the necessary approvals, and developing a recruitment plan. The ESR will actively recruit participants to the trial, obtain informed consent, and liaise with the clinical team to ensure that the study procedures are followed. Participants will also be asked to consent to collecting biomaterials, including synovial and lymph node tissues when applicable.

Our research team

Working together within the Amsterdam Rheumatology and immunology Center (ARC) and being embedded in the Amsterdam Infection & Immunity Institute (AI&II) gives us excellent opportunities to work closely together with both rheumatologists as well as immunologists on clinical and translational research projects. Collaboration with the large group of rheumatologists within the ARC as well as with the funding and patient advocacy organization ReumaNederland provides access to sufficient numbers of patients. For our research program lymph node biopsy procedures are performed in close collaboration with the department of Radiology while synovial tissue biopsies are routinely collected within our department. We are involved in several national and international research projects, allowing excellent possibilities for collaborations with other research groups in academia as well as industry.