PhD defense, Jonathan Vela

The Department of Clinical Medicine, Aalborg University and Aalborg University Hospital are pleased to invite to PhD defense by MD, Jonathan Vela, who will defend the thesis entitled: Pain in Psoriatic Arthritis and Hand Osteoarthritis


26.11.2021 kl. 13.00 - 16.00


The PhD defense will take place

FridayNovember 26th at 13:00
In the auditorium, Sygehus Nord
Aalborg University Hospital

and online:

After the defense there will be held a reception. All are welcome.


Main supervisor:
Salome Kristensen, Clinical Associate Professor
Department of Clinical Medicine, Aalborg University

Lene Dreyer, Clinical Professor
Department of Clinical Medicine, Aalborg University

Kristian Kjær Petersen, Associate Professor
Department of Health Science and Technology, Aalborg University

Lars Arendt Nielsen, Professor
Department of Health Science and Technology, Aalborg University

Assessment Committee

Peter Holland-Fischer, Clinical Associate Professor (chair)
Department of Clinical Medicine, Aalborg University

Ester M. Pogatzi-Zahn, Prof. Dr. med
University Hospital Muenster, Dept.of Anesthesiology
Muenster, Germany

Susanne Juhl Pedersen, MD, PhD, Associate professor
Copenhagen Center for arthritis research,
Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Denmark


About the PhD thesis

The topic of the thesis is primarily investigation of pain in patients with psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and hand osteoarthritis (OA) it is based on four studies.

Study 1 it was investigated if pain in patients with PsA were associated with increased mortality. This was done by use of a nested case-control study design based on the data from several Danish national registers and the DANBIO register for patients with rheumatic diseases. A total of 276 cases who died were included and matched with 1.187 controls. Cumulative pain scores and model that include other risk factors for mortality.

Study 2 investigated if patients with PsA and hand OA have altered pain mechanisms in terms of altered pain thresholds, temporal summation, and conditioned pain modulation. This was done in a cross-sectional study design. Patients from the NordCAN study (PsA, n=58 and hand OA, n=74) with chronic pain and Healthy controls (n=20).

In study 3 (NordCAN-study), the efficacy of Cannabidiol (CBD) as an add on of analgesic therapy in patients with hand OA or PsA experiencing moderate pain intensity despite therapy is assessed. To address this, a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled trial was performed; patients received synthetic CBD 20-30mg or placebo daily for 12 weeks. One hundred and thirty-six patients were randomized and 129 were included in the primary analysis. Secondary outcomes were sleep quality, depression, anxiety, or pain catastrophizing scores.

In study 4, a secondary analysis was made from patients data included in the NordCAN study to investigate if CBD could modify quantitative sensory testing (QST) parameters in patients with pain. Furthermore, the study aimed for an identification of potential predictors of an effect related to CBD treatment in patients. To explore potential predictors of treatment effect patients were stratified based on response to treatment. Responders were defined as patients experiencing a reduction of ≥30 % pain intensity.


Department of Clinical Medicine


The Auditorium, Aalborg University Hospital North, Reberbansgade 15

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