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Roland Staud's Profile

Homepage: http://www.med.ufl.edu/rheum/

Research Interests: Chronic musculoskeletal pain, including fibromyalgia, low back pain, irritable bowel syndrome. Etc. In addition, pain in patients with OA, RA, and SLE also will be investigated.

Roland Staud's Projects

Medical - Functional Brain Imaging in FM Patients
Principal Investigator: Roland Staud

Pain is a complex experience and almost always requires acitvation of nociceptors. However, in many pain syndromes such activation is not readily detectable. Low back pain and fibromyalgia (FM) are such pain disorders. This research project will examine the role of tonic nociceptive input on chronic pain in patients with FM syndrome. Age/sex matched participants will be used as normal controls. Tonic pain will be induced by muscle stimulation and reduced by muscle injection with a local anesthetic. Psychophysical testing of the skin and muscle via computerized thermal/mechanical probes will be used to examine the role of tonic mechanical stimulations on pain and pain processing. In a subsequent study the same manipulations will be used during functional magnetic resonance scans (fMRI) to characterize the pain related brain areas related to tonic impulse input.

Requirements: Strong interest in biology, (particularly anatomy) and biochemistry.

Time Commitment: 3 hours x 2 per week

Independent Study: Available
Work Study: Not Available
Salary: Not Available
Volunteer: Available
Medical - fMRI Imaging of Pain Sensitivity
Principal Investigator: Roland Staud

Functional neuroimaging with Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have begun to provide new insights into the cortical and subcortical processing of pain. These techniques can measure alterations in cerebral blood flow, which reflect changes in neuronal activity. The brain areas identified to be relevant to pain processing in human subjects include the thalamus, primary and secondary somatosensory cortex (S1, S2) the anterior insula and the anterior cingulate cortex. Previous results of heat sensory testing in subjects with fibromyalgia syndrome (FM) showed signs of central sensitization as well as abnormalities of pain aftersensations when compared to normal controls. The proposed study will evaluate the brain activation of FM and NC subjects during wind-up testing. FM patients will undergo measurements of clinical pain and heat sensory testing during fMRI. The quantitative methods of evaluation involve the use of a validated visual analogue scale (VAS) for measuring clinical pain as well as repetitive application of brief, non-injurious thermal and mechanical stimulation that normally produces a moderate degree of central sensitization. The subjects will verbally rate the magnitude of early and late sensations elicited by each stimulus, using a numerical scale.

Requirements: Strong interest in biology, anatomy (particularly neuro-anatomy), and biochemistry

Time Commitment: 2 x 3 hours per week minimum

Independent Study: Available
Work Study: Not Available
Salary: Not Available
Volunteer: Available
Medical - Analgesic Mechanisms of Acupuncture
Principal Investigator: Roland Staud

Acupuncture (AP) has been found to be effective for the treatment of postoperative and chemotherapy-induced nausea/vomiting as well as post-operative dental pain. Several recent randomized, controlled trials have provided strong evidence for beneficial AP effects on chronic low back pain and knee pain from osteoarthritis. For many other chronic pain conditions, including headaches, neck pain, and fibromyalgia pain, the evidence supporting AP’s efficacy is less convincing. Furthermore, AP seems to be ineffective in treating addiction, insomnia, obesity, asthma, or stroke deficits. AP’s effects on experimental pain appear to be mediated by analgesic brain mechanisms through the release of neurohumoral factors, some of which can be inhibited by the opioid antagonist naloxone. In contrast to placebo analgesia, AP related pain relief takes considerable time to develop and to resolve. Thus, some of the long-term effects of AP analgesia cannot be explained by placebo mechanisms. Furthermore, repetitive use of AP analgesia can result in tolerance as well as cross-tolerance with morphine. It appears that some forms of AP are more effective for providing analgesia than others. Particularly, electro-AP seems best to activate powerful opioid and non-opioid analgesic mechanisms.

Requirements: Most importantly, interest in human pain research. Biology background, familiarity with computers, and lab experience are helpful but not necessary.

Time Commitment: 2 x 3 hours per wee, minimum

Independent Study: Available
Work Study: Available
Salary: Not Available
Volunteer: Available
Agricultural - Mechanisms of Acupuncture Analgesia
Principal Investigator: Roland Staud

Acupuncture (AP) has been found to be effective for the treatment of postoperative and chemotherapy-induced nausea/vomiting as well as post-operative dental pain. Several recent randomized, controlled trials have provided strong evidence for beneficial AP effects on chronic low back pain and knee pain from osteoarthritis. For many other chronic pain conditions, including headaches, neck pain, and fibromyalgia pain, the evidence supporting AP’s efficacy is less convincing. Furthermore, AP seems to be ineffective in treating addiction, insomnia, obesity, asthma, or stroke deficits. AP’s effects on experimental pain appear to be mediated by analgesic brain mechanisms through the release of neurohumoral factors, some of which can be inhibited by the opioid antagonist naloxone. In contrast to placebo analgesia, AP related pain relief takes considerable time to develop and to resolve. Thus, some of the long-term effects of AP analgesia cannot be explained by placebo mechanisms. Furthermore, repetitive use of AP analgesia can result in tolerance as well as cross-tolerance with morphine. It appears that some forms of AP are more effective for providing analgesia than others. Particularly, electro-AP seems best to activate powerful opioid and non-opioid analgesic mechanisms.

Requirements: Most importantly, interest in human pain research. Biology background, familiarity with computers, and lab experience are helpful but not necessary.

Time Commitment: 2 x 3 hours per week, minimum

Independent Study: Available
Work Study: Available
Salary: Not Available
Volunteer: Available