World Arthritis Day 2018 - I am a University professor researching arthritis-related pain - AMA
I'm Lucy Donaldson, Professor of Sensory Physiology. Ask me anything about arthritis-related pain, pain research in general, and why we use animals in research.
This AMA is being held because it is World Arthritis Day today (12th October 2018) (https://www.eular.org/world_arthritis_day.cfm). I have been researching arthritis-related pain since I was a PhD student, and now I lead a lab of researchers working on various aspects, including some work on new analgesic drug development. Our research focuses on improving our understanding of why arthritis is painful, why some people might get chronic pain and why others don’t, and how the function of the nervous system contributes to this. We use research techniques ranging from study of molecules involved in nervous system signalling, through cells cultured in dishes, to whole animal models which includes mild models of arthritis in rats and mice. Ask me anything about the research methods we use, including why it is sometimes necessary to use animals in scientific research. This AMA has been arranged in conjunction with Understanding Animal Research (http://www.understandinganimalresearch.org.uk/) and Versus Arthritis (https://www.versusarthritis.org/), UK charities that support biomedical research communities in the UK. UAR works to inform researchers and the general public about the good research practice, the humane use of animals and the consideration of animal welfare in research, the role this research plays in the scientific process (http://www.understandinganimalresearch.org.uk/about-us/uar-position-on-the-use-of-animals-in-research/), the 3Rs (https://www.nc3rs.org.uk/the-3rs) , and the principles of openness (http://concordatopenness.org.uk/) around the use of animals in biomedical research.