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Research recommendations following the discovery of pain sensitizing IgG autoantibodies in fibromyalgia syndrome

Goebel, Andreas, Andersson, David, Barker, Chris, Basu, Neil, Bullock, Craig, Bevan, Stuart, Bashford-Rogers, Rachael J M, Choy, Ernest, Clauw, David, Dulake, Debra, Dulake, Richard, Flor, Herta, Glanvill, Marcia, Helyes, Zsuzsanna, Irani, Sarosh, Kosek, Eva, Laird, Jennifer, MacFarlane, Gary, McCullough, Hayley, Marshall, Andrew, Moots, Robert, Perrot, Serge, Shenker, Nick, Sher, Emanuele, Sommer, Claudia, Svensson, Camilla I, Williams, Amanda, Wood, Geoff and Dorris, Emma R 2022. Research recommendations following the discovery of pain sensitizing IgG autoantibodies in fibromyalgia syndrome. Pain Medicine 23 (6) , pp. 1084-1094. 10.1093/pm/pnab338

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Background Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is the most common chronic widespread pain condition in rheumatology. Until recently, no clear pathophysiological mechanism for fibromyalgia had been established, resulting in management challenges. Recent research has indicated that serum immunoglobulin Gs (IgGs) may play a role in FMS. We undertook a research prioritisation exercise to identify the most pertinent research approaches that may lead to clinically implementable outputs. Methods Research priority setting was conducted in five phases: situation analysis; design; expert group consultation; interim recommendations; consultation and revision. A dialogue model was used, and an international multi-stakeholder expert group was invited. Clinical, patient, industry, funder, and scientific expertise was represented throughout. Recommendation-consensus was determined via a voluntary closed eSurvey. Reporting guideline for priority setting of health research were employed to support implementation and maximise impact. Results Arising from the expert group consultation (n = 29 participants), 39 interim recommendations were defined. A response rate of 81.5% was achieved in the consensus survey. Six recommendations were identified as high priority- and 15 as medium level priority. The recommendations range from aspects of fibromyalgia features that should be considered in future autoantibody research, to specific immunological investigations, suggestions for trial design in FMS, and therapeutic interventions that should be assessed in trials. Conclusions By applying the principles of strategic priority setting we directed research towards that which is implementable, thereby expediating the benefit to the FMS patient population. These recommendations are intended for patients, international professionals and grant-giving bodies concerned with research into causes and management of patients with fibromyalgia syndrome.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Additional Information: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (
Publisher: Wiley
ISSN: 1526-2375
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 26 January 2022
Date of Acceptance: 16 November 2021
Last Modified: 22 Jun 2022 13:44

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