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Environmental Factor, December 2015

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LabTV focuses on NIEHS clinical researcher

By Kelly Lenox

In late October, Lisa Rider, M.D., deputy chief of the NIEHS Environmental Autoimmunity Group, was featured on LabTV, a video series created by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  The series highlights the biographies and careers of NIH scientists, as a way to interest young people in pursuing careers in biomedical research.

Rider speaks about her studies of myositis, in particular juvenile myositis (JM), a disease characterized by chronic muscle inflammation and weakness. JM includes both juvenile dermatomyositis and the very rare juvenile polymyositis.

In the video, Rider described myositis and how her interest in it developed. She also shared some clinical aspects of her research, as she works with children to follow their JM progression. She is particularly interested in pinpointing environmental and genetic factors that may contribute to the disease.

Rider noted the importance of collaborations with other researchers, within the United States and internationally, in helping to advance the understanding of these rare diseases. Noting that there are currently no approved therapies for JM, she said, “In my lifetime, I’m really hoping we’ll have approved treatments.”

For those considering a career in research, Rider listed some important steps, including “… getting a solid education and then keeping your mind open to all the opportunities that come through … always asking questions … always trying to be on the cutting edge.”

The video is currently featured on the NIH Clinical Center Researcher Stories: Why We Became Scientists page.

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