Research Associate - MODRAS Study

Job Reference : M&HS-07599
Location : Oxford Road, Manchester
Closing Date (DD-MM-YYYY) : 24/04/2016
Salary : £30,738 per annum
Employment Type : Fixed Term
Faculty / Organisational Unit : Medical & Human Sciences
Division : Musculoskeletal
Hours Per week : full time
Contract Duration : 1 March 2016 to 30 April 2017

Applications are invited for a Research Associate for the Arthritis Research UK funded project on identifying distinct trajectories of important clinical and patient reported outcomes in early and established rheumatoid arthritis populations with moderate disease activity. The MODRAS study aims to identify distinct trajectories of important clinical and patient reported outcomes in early and established rheumatoid arthritis populations with moderate disease activity. In addition, the aim is to identify disease specific phenotypes associated with membership of each trajectory.  Identifying and validating these trajectories, and the factors which associate with different trajectories, across observational studies is likely to provide useful information for developing and applying treatment strategies in clinical practice for patients with rheumatoid arthritis having moderate disease activity thus leading to better care in the long-term.

Inflammatory Polyarthritis (IP), and its subset Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), follows a progressive course characterized by persistent inflammatory synovitis and erosive joint damage that subsequently results in functional disability. Currently the aim of treatment is to control the disease by early and aggressive therapy, aiming for remission, with the long-term goal of maximizing the patient’s quality of life and physical function, limiting joint damage and increasing life expectancy. In the UK, the use of biologic therapies in RA is restricted to those patients with high disease activity despite treatment with synthetic disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs. However, the long-term outcomes, including important outcomes for individual patients such as functional disability, psychological well-being and remaining in paid work, in the group of patients who have moderate disease activity but fail to reach the threshold for biologic therapy are not well-known.  The aim of the MODRAS study will be to gain a better understanding of these outcomes in this patient population which may help to apply better treatment strategies in the future.  The MODRAS study will be performed using data from three large real-world cohorts of patients with rheumatoid arthritis in the UK, including: the Norfolk Arthritis Register (NOAR), Early Rheumatoid Arthritis Network (ERAN), and the BSR Biologics Register for RA (BSRBR-RA).

You will be analyzing longitudinally collected data in these three separate cohorts including patients with moderate disease activity.  To identify distinct trajectories of important clinical and patients reported outcomes Latent Class Growth Models (LCGM) will be applied.  You will further apply appropriate statistical techniques to validate the different models in line with the publication plan including developing an understanding of the limitations of the datasets and appropriate statistical/epidemiological techniques to address these. The primary analysis will be done using M-Plus, STATA or SAS.  You will work collaboratively with leading investigators, based in Manchester and London, of the three different cohorts who are leaders in the field of epidemiology research. 

The Institute of Inflammation and Repair is committed to promoting equality and diversity, including the Athena SWAN charter for promoting women’s careers in STEMM subjects (science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine) in higher education. The Institute received a Bronze Award in 2013 for their commitment to the representation of women in the workplace and we particularly welcome applications from women for this post. Appointment will always be made on merit. For further information, please visit

Enquiries about the vacancy, shortlisting and interviews:

Dr Suzanne Verstappen, Senior Research Fellow


Tel: 0161 275 5663

General enquiries:


Tel: 0161 275 4499

Technical support:


Tel: 01565 818 234

Date of external posting:     Wednesday 13 January 2016

This vacancy will close for applications at midnight on the closing date.

Further particulars


This position is now closed. We are no longer accepting applications for this position.