The National Psoriasis Foundation announces new sources of help for researchers and physicians

April 30, 2003

PORTLAND, Ore. - The National Psoriasis Foundation today announced the granting of $220,000 to researchers studying the immunology and genetics of psoriasis; and the publication of Therapy of Moderate-to-Severe Psoriasis, a guide for medical professionals who treat the more than 1 million U.S. adults who have moderate-to-severe psoriasis.

Grants Awarded

The National Psoriasis Foundation has granted $150,000 to Tasha Sims, Ph.D., of the Mount Sinai School of Medicine of New York University. Sims, a research associate at the Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine, has shown previously that new psoriasis drugs work because they deplete and alter overactive T-cells. Now she will explore the role of a molecule on the surface of the T-cell that helps it communicate with other cells.

The Psoriasis Foundation has also awarded a two-year, $70,000 fellowship to Elizabeth Jones, Ph.D., of Yale University. Jones is a postdoctoral associate in the department of immunology who will use the grant to investigate the genetic origin of a cell called IL-10 and its role in psoriasis.

"We are pleased to be able to fund such qualified researchers with promising projects," said Gail Zimmerman, president and CEO of the National Psoriasis Foundation. "We look forward to results of these important efforts."

The Psoriasis Foundation gives out grants each year. In the past 20 years, the Foundation has awarded grants from $1,000 to $280,000.

New Clinical Manual

Therapy of Moderate-to-Severe Psoriasis, the Psoriasis Foundation's recently updated clinical manual, is now available to medical professionals who treat psoriasis. This second edition is designed to help doctors more quickly diagnose this serious and debilitating disease. It's also a reference for the safest and most effective treatments. It includes chapters on how to manage the disease in children, the immunological aspects of psoriasis, how to use biologics, and recent advances in understanding the clinical manifestation, epidemiology and development of psoriasis.

"This is an essential tool packed with comprehensive treatment and dosing information that doctors won't find anywhere else," said Fred Castrow, M.D., immediate past president of the American Academy of Dermatology.

The first manual came out in 1993. This second edition features new and fully revised chapters drawing on the expertise of leading physicians in the fields of dermatology and rheumatology. It was edited by two members of the National Psoriasis Foundation Medical Board, Gerald Weinstein, M.D., professor and chairman emeritus of the Department of Dermatology at the University of California, Irvine and Alice Gottlieb, M.D., Ph.D, professor of medicine and W.H. Conzen Chair in Clinical Pharmacology at the UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

Therapy of Moderate-to-Severe Psoriasis is published by Marcel Dekker and is available for $45 for the Foundation's professional members and $65 for all others by calling 800.723.9166. Bristol-Myers Squibb Dermatology, Centocor, Genentech, Roche and Schering Corporation supported the publication through unrestricted educational grants. The Psoriasis Foundation was solely responsible for all development and content.

About Psoriasis

Psoriasis is an immune disease that typically first strikes people between the ages of 15 and 35. Psoriasis occurs when faulty signals in the immune system cause skin cells to regenerate too quickly -- every three to four days instead of the usual 30-day cycle. Extra skin cells build up on the skin's surface forming red, flaky, scaly patches called plaques that can itch, crack, and bleed and be extremely painful. Psoriasis generally appears on the joints, limbs and scalp but it can appear anywhere on the body, covering some people from head to toe. More than 4.5 million U.S. adults have psoriasis.

About the National Psoriasis Foundation

The National Psoriasis Foundation is the leading nonprofit organization fighting to improve the quality of life of people with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis and their families. It receives its support from public donations and companies interested in supporting the psoriasis community. Its mission is to educate people about these diseases and their treatments, raise public awareness, and support ongoing research. The organization is headquartered in Portland, Ore., and serves the millions of men, women and children diagnosed with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. For more information, please call the Psoriasis Foundation at 800-723-9166 or visit http://www.psoriasis.org.
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National Psoriasis Foundation

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