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Weekly Briefing - September 10, 2021

Welcome to the OARSI Weekly Briefing - the single resource you need to stay up to date with OARSI & World Congress news, membership announcements, and happenings within the OARSI & OA community.

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September 10, 2021 Briefing-at-a-Glance
Abstract Submissions Now OpenSave the Date: OARSI CTS| Member Spotlight: Francis Berenbaum OARSI Discussion Group OARSI Live Call for Presenters | OARSI Connect '21 Recordings | Important Dates | Weekly Briefing Archive

Abstract Submissions Now Open!

The Osteoarthritis Research Society International invites you to submit your research for an in person or virtual oral or poster presentation at the 2022 World Congress to be held in Berlin, Germany. The submission period will close on November 12, 2021. Click HERE to read additional information on the submission process and to ensure your abstract is submitted to the appropriate category.

SAVE THE DATE: OARSI Clinical Trials Symposium - Wednesday, October 20th

The OARSI Clinical Trials Symposium is scheduled for Wednesday, October 20th at 9 am EDT. This symposium is envisioned as a debate continuing the discussions held with OARSI, the FDA, and the Arthritis Foundation (AF) in June of 2021. The debate “How can we design clinical trials for regulatory approval in OA” will feature OARSI members and individuals from the FDA. More information and registration to follow.


Member Spotlight: Francis Berenbaum

Over the course of the next few weeks, we will spotlight the past Clinical Research Award Winners. This week's Member Spotlight is 2017 winner, Francis Berenbaum. 

How long have you been a member of OARSI and why did you join?

I have been a member of OARSI for over 20 years now. I remember attending my first conference in Barcelona in 2000 and I found a fantastic scientific community that had the same reason for being here: learning and sharing the cutting edge research in the field of osteoarthritis in order to find solutions for patients. I especially remember the presentation of my first poster. I was very impressed to have to present my work in front of renowned researchers, fearing criticism, but I could instead see the kindness that encouraged me to become a member of OARSI.

What do you enjoy most about OARSI?

What I like most about this scientific society is its conviviality and its ability to bring together basic scientists and clinicians in the same room for a common agenda. I have experienced this conviviality and this capacity to meet all together for a common goal during my 12 years on the board (first board of directors then executive board) as well as in each of the annual congresses. 

Tell us a little bit about your research?

Since the beginning of my career, I have been at the frontier between clinical research and basic/translational research. The profession of professor of rheumatology imposes it: if you want to pass on the passion you have for rheumatology to your students, you have to immerse yourself in the world of research on a daily basis while keeping in mind that the only objective of this research is to find new treatments for our patients. I started with very biochemical studies devoted to the role of inflammatory mediators in the different tissues of the osteoarthritic joint with the support of Mary Goldring, Leslie Crofford, and Steven Abramson who have been my mentors in the field. In parallel, the first breakthrough studies on low-grade metabolic systemic inflammation came out. I decided to test the hypothesis on a link between systemic inflammation and osteoarthritis, both in clinical and in basic/translational research.

What does winning the Clinical Research Award mean to you?

For me, this recognition by the OARSI scientific community represented the culmination of work accomplished by dozens of people: researchers, post-doctoral and doctoral fellows, undergraduate students, technicians, engineers, rheumatologists, orthopedists, and patients. Having ideas, hypotheses, projects, is good. But being able to concretize them is a much higher challenge. And alone is impossible. I consider that this Award was first and foremost a consecration for them. 

What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

Unfortunately (or fortunately!), I have very little free time left since I very recently decided to launch a start-up dedicated to the development of new treatments for osteoarthritis. It is an extraordinary adventure to start from a patent filed by my own academic laboratory to arrive now at discussions on how to design the first-in-human study! However, I still try to keep time for my family including my wife, 4 children, and 4 grandchildren during weekends and vacations, and also some times for sports (mainly road cycling) because otherwise, I would no longer be credible I tell to my patients that the main curative and preventive treatment for their disease today is physical activity!

OARSI Discussion Groups

OARSI's Discussion Groups bring together individuals with a focus on specific OA-related specialty areas. To make the Discussion Groups easier to join we have updated our database. Now OARSI members can log in to their profile and select the Discussion Group(s) that they would like to join. By updating your profile with your Discussion Group preferences, we will be able to send targeted emails to each Discussion Group and maintain an official roster for each group. To update your profile, follow these steps.

  • Log in to
  • Click on the menu button in the top left of the screen
  • Select ‘My Profile’
  • Select ‘Edit'
  • Select the ‘My Account’ tab
  • Scroll to Discussion Groups and select your group(s)

OARSI Live Call for Presenters

The OARSI Live webinar series is currently on hiatus and will resume this fall. We are looking to schedule our fall program and are seeking webinar presenters. If you would like to present on an OARSI Live webinar, please contact Vincenzo Nelli with a brief summary of your proposed presentation.


OARSI Connect '21 Recordings

Did you know that all of the recorded sessions from OARSI Connect ‘21 are available to registered attendees through April 2022!? If you missed a session because you attended another session or it occurred at a time that was inconvenient for you, you can view it by logging into the virtual meeting website. Just navigate to the Agenda page and select the session(s) you want to view.

If you missed OARSI Connect ‘21, you can still register and have access to the recordings. It simple, just register HERE.


Important Dates & Upcoming Deadlines

  • October 20, 2021 - OARSI Clinical Trials Symposium
  • November 12, 2021 - Abstract Submission Deadline
  • 2021 Membership Dues: Be sure to renew your OARSI dues. Renew.
  • April 7 - 10, 2022 - OARSI World Congress in Berlin, Germany


Past OARSI Weekly Briefings

Featured Resources

OARSI White Paper- OA as a Serious Disease

By Various

Patient Summary- Non Surgical Treatment of Knee Osteoarthritis

By Multiple Authors