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Rosacea Research in Perspective of Funding

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image courtesy of WikiMedia Commons

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) spent $31.3 billion in 2016 according to this report. You may see the list of diseases that the NIH funds research on and rosacea is not on the list. 

Dr. Kligman in a paper he wrote in 2003 mentions the "indifference of the National Institutes of Health, which with an annual budget of nearly 30 billion dollars, has not seen fit to fund a single grant for the investigation of rosacea." Dr. Kligman also says that most research done on rosacea is by the skin industry which is "voluminous literature, mainly focused on treatments sponsored by commercial interests; perhaps not the most credible source of unbiased research.'” 
A Personal Critique on the State of Knowledge of Rosacea32.48 kB · 2 downloads , Albert M. Kligman, M.D., Ph.D.
Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A.

For example, this paper states, "Of the 106 studies, 66 reported that they received funding, mainly by pharmaceutical companies. We were confident funding did not affect the results in 56 of these studies but had concerns about the remaining 10." [1]

The National Rosacea Society, who is heavily funded by pharmaceutical companies or skin industries, i.e., Galderma, Allergan, Bayer HealthCare, Rodan+Fields, Cutanea, has funded over $1.6 million on rosacea papers over a twenty year period. The AARS has funded a little research. 

One paper on demodex was funded by the Irish Health Research Board. 

You have to do some investigative digging on who is funding a research paper on rosacea. Are you into this?  That is what volunteering is all about. 

End Notes

[1] Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2015 Apr; 2015(4): CD003262.
Published online 2015 Apr 28. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD003262.pub5
PMCID: PMC6481562
PMID: 25919144
Interventions for rosacea
Zbys Fedorowicz, Ben Carter, Mireille MD van der Linden, Lyn Charland, and Esther J van Zuuren

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The skin industry, of course, is the primary sponsor of rosacea research papers published in the medical journals, as Dr. Kligman points out and comments that such papers are "perhaps not the most credible source of unbiased research.' It takes a lot of deep investigation to find the source of funding of a clinical paper published in a medical journal but if you have the time and patience you can discover who funded the research paper published. For example if you check out this article published in the Dermatology Online Journal you can find that one of the authors, Eckert M. Mendieta works at the Department of Dermatology, Clínica Dermitek, which is part of the 'skin industry.'

Dermatol Online J. 2016 Aug 15;22(8). pii: 13030/qt9ks1c48n.
Treatment of rosacea with topical ivermectin cream: a series of 34 cases.
Mendieta Eckert M, Landa Gundin N. 

While we have reviewed who is funding rosacea research we are still grateful for ANY rosacea research funding and can glean useful information from these published papers. The status quo research papers are without a doubt funded primarily by the skin industry, included in this are the few non profit organizations for rosacea since with the exception of the RRDi, is funded primarily by the pharmaceutical skin industry. Joel T. Bamford, MD, wrote an article in the Journal of the Rosacea Research & Development Institute, Is it possible for rosaceans to do research?, which encourages his recommendation that Rosaceans should get together and sponsor their own research independent of the skin industry. What a novel idea? And that is why the RRDi was formed so that a non profit organization for rosacea should be established by Rosaceans who suffer from rosacea, and not like the other non profit organizations for rosacea who are established and run by NON rosaceans. If enough rosaceans got together, say 10,000 members, and each donated one dollar, they could sponsor their own double blind, placebo controlled, peer-reviewed rosacea research clinical papers.

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