Autoimmune and Autoinflammatory Diseases

Researchers at TRI are working towards better management and treatment of patients with autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases including:

Rheumatoid Arthritis 

Research in UQ Professor Ranjeny Thomas's team research focusses on autoimmune disease and restoration of tolerance. Their projects span from understanding dendritic cell function through analysis of signaling pathways, in vivo studies of tolerance, through to clinical trials of tolerance in autoimmunity, and clinical studies of risk factors in rheumatoid arthritis and type 1 diabetes. Through this work, Prof Thomas developed and tested the first rheumatoid arthritis vaccine which is now in early stage clinical trials. She has also contributed major insights into the pathogenesis of spondyloarthropathy and autoimmune diabetes, leading to the development of disease biomarkers and therapeutic strategies. 

Professor Thomas is founder and a director of the spin-off company based at TRI, Dendright, which is developing vaccines to suppress autoimmune diseases.

Type 1 Diabetes

UQ Professor Raymond Steptoe and his team are studying behaviour modulation in T-cells in autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes, and immune tolerance.


QUT Professor Tony Kenna's research focusses on systemic sclerosis and systemic lupus erythematosus. He and his team are currently evaluating a new and specific protein for treatment of these conditions, that targets a protein in the immune system that controls inflammation. 

Ankylosing Spondylitis 

Akylosing spondylitis is an immune-mediated inflammatory arthritis that can lead to fusion of the spine and pelvic joints, causing significant pain and disability. QUT Professor Matt Brown and his team is investigating genes that contribute to development of AS.  

Key Researchers
Jessica Whyte
Matthew Arthur Brown
Tony Kenna
Emma Hamilton-Williams
Ranjeny Thomas
Raymond John Steptoe
Show More ...
Professor Ranjeny Thomas explains her research on autoimmune diseases
Study finds link between blood components and brain disorders A Mater Research study, led by TRI-based researchers, has identified a previously unknown genetic link between platelets and Parkinson...Read more
New autoimmune disease and cancer therapeutics edging closer to reality for patients A career dedicated to rheumatoid arthritis has led Professor Ranjeny Thomas AM to the development of a potential...Read more
CSL signs deal for new autoimmune disease therapeutic Biotech leader, CSL has announced a partnership deal to develop and commercialise an autoimmune disease therapeutic developed by The University...Read more
TRI-based researchers from The University of Queensland (UQ) were involved in discovering how joint inflammation evolves in rheumatoid arthritis, and the cells that prolong the inflammatory attack...Read more
Over $5.9 million in NHMRC funding awarded to TRI-based researchers for 2019 In the latest round of NHMRC funding announced this month, TRI-based researchers from UQ, QUT and Mater-UQ have secured...Read more
Early bird registration open for APLAR-ARA 2019 Are you working in research areas relevant to rheumatology such as pain, autoimmune diseases, bone and joint diseases, inflammation, and immunology? Do...Read more
Dendright announces first human dose of DEN-181 in phase 1b Clinical Trial Dendright Pty Limited, a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing a first-in-class immunotherapy for the treatment of...Read more
CONTEMPORARY AND EMERGING APPROACHES FOR THE MANAGEMENT OF FUNCTIONAL GASTROINTESTINAL DISORDERS Department of Gastroenterology & Hepatology at the Princess Alexandra Hospital presents this...Read more
Arthritis Qld - 18th Annual Health Professionals Seminar Join Arthritis Qld at the 18th Annual Health Professionals Seminar to be held at the TRI on the 10th March. Tickets*: Early bird - $160 (...Read more
* PAGE UNDER CONSTRUCTION IN OCTOBER 2016 Translational Research From A Dietitian's Perspective QUT Intern Carly Booth and Clinician Researcher Dr Ingrid Hickman chat about Ingrid's view of...Read more