Academy Fellows

Dr Philip Brown

Dr Philip Brown Image

Overview: I graduated with a BMedSci (Hons) from Aberdeen University in 2011. I undertook an Academic Foundation post at South Tees NHS Trust and Newcastle University before continuing as a NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow with Newcastle University and Health Education North East. During this time, I graduated with a Diploma in Clinical and Health Sciences with Therapeutics from Newcastle University. I am currently a ST4 Rheumatology trainee working at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle.

PhD Title: Investigation of methotrexate metabolites in CD4+ T-Lymphocytes as a predictor of response to treatment in Rheumatoid Arthritis


Brief summary of PhD project: Outcomes for patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) are maximized by early and effective control of the inflammatory process, however at present no robust biomarkers exist to guide therapy decisions. My project aims to recruit a cohort of early drug naïve RA patients starting methotrexate therapy. I will measure changes in methotrexate and folate metabolites and gene expression changes within circulating CD4+ T-Lymphocytes as a key pathogenic cell type to identify predictors of clinical response to treatment.

Supervisors:

Professor John Isaacs (Newcastle University)

Dr Arthur Pratt (Newcastle University)

Prof Ann Morgan (University of Leeds)

Dr Achim Treumann (Newcastle University)

Dr Amy Anderson (Newcastle University)

Progress so farI have recruited over 50% of my target cohort and am continuing to follow them up to gauge clinical response at 6 months. I am optimizing the LC-MS assay to be used for quantification of methotrexate and folate metabolites. I am undertaking analysis of elements of adenosine signaling as a proposed mechanism of action of methotrexate on immune cell subsets by flow cytometry of peripheral blood from these patients. I am developing a panel of gene transcripts for investigation. I am currently applying for a grant to characterize serum microvesicle mRNA expression from samples collected from this cohort to determine if this may have a role in therapy response prediction.



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