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Building on strong foundations

Our commitment to research continues under the direction of Prof Hans Nossent as Chair of Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Medicine at the University of Western Australia. Research provides the key to further our knowledge of musculoskeletal conditions, improve treatments and management, and ultimately search for cures.

The scholarship for a PhD student was made possible by a substantial and generous bequest by the late Mr John Donald Stewart. Warren Raymond was awarded the scholarship and his PhD research plan was recently approved by the Research Board of UWA. His thesis planned for 2020 will investigate in detail six specific aspects of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) based on WARDER data and report these findings in peer-reviewed journals.

Prof Nossent’s activities in 2017


A WA Health approved project on the epidemiological characteristic of rheumatic disease in WA. The project contains statewide linked data for all patients with rheumatic disease who were in hospital contact over the period 1980 – 2015.
– In 2017, these data sets have been synchronised to include state-wide cancer, ED and mortality registries and the resulting data sets have undergone extensive quality control checking. With the data set now complete, the stage is set for investigations into a number of research questions. Preliminary findings were presented in 2017 at the International Lupus Meeting in Melbourne and EULAR 2017.
– Ms Milica Ognjenovich is a master of Public Health and has taken over the role of Rheumatology Research Officer at UWA. She is investigating the WARDER data for frequency and severity of spinal fractures in patients with Ankylosing Spondylitis.

Perth Lupus Registry

Prof Nossent is founder and chairman of the Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Working Party which is a collaboration between QEII campus-based rheumatologists, clinical and basic immunologists and renal physicians. Its aim is to increase research activity into this disease and coordinate local services to SLE patients.
– The online database has been populated with clinical data for 102 patients and will be regularly updated with new data for included and newly recruited patients.

Busselton Health Study

– In collaboration with Prof Matthew Knuiman at the School of Population Health, two papers were published regarding rheumatic disease markers as a predictor of cardiovascular disease in the Busselton Health Study.

Biopsy Proven Lupus Nephritis

-This local collaborative investigation with Drs B Wong and A Chakera to evaluate the frequency, severity and outcome of renal disease in patients with SLE at SCGH over the period 2000 – 2015 reached the final stage of a closed complete database in 2017.
-Preliminary findings for this project were presented at the 2017 International Lupus Meeting in Melbourne and EULAR 2017.
– A connected investigation into Lupus Nephritis in Aboriginal patients and into rare presentation of Lupus Nephritis has led to two papers in 2017.


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