Project

Dr Christopher Hall
University of Auckland
Targeting crystal-driven macrophage activation to suppress gouty inflammation
$1,185,170
36 months

Lay summary

Gout is the most common inflammatory arthritis in New Zealand. Of significance, Māori and Pacific people have the highest prevalence of gout worldwide. Inflammation associated with gout leads to extreme pain, disability and poor health related quality of life. Current anti-inflammatory treatments for gout are non-specific and can lead to severe adverse effects. As such there is an unmet need for new, more targeted therapies to alleviate gouty inflammation. Acute gouty inflammation is driven by monosodium urate (MSU) crystals deposited in and around joints that directly activate macrophages. This proposal will leverage off a unique model of gouty inflammation that we developed to further understand how MSU crystals activate macrophages and to identify new uses for existing FDA-approved drugs as inhibitors of MSU crystal-driven macrophage activation. We anticipate this drug repositioning approach will lead to new anti-inflammatory therapies for preventing and treating acute gout flares and potentially other crystallopathies.

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