ResearchMatch, a U.S.-wide, disease-neutral, volunteer research recruitment and engagement platform, is partnering with the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA), a volunteer-driven organization dedicated to curing Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and improving the quality of life of children and adults affected by those diseases.
Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), which includes Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, affect as many as 1.6 million Americans. The exact cause of these chronic, life-long conditions is not entirely understood, but is known to involve an interaction between genes, the immune system and environmental factors. Currently, IBD can only be treated but not cured.
Although great strides have been made to improve treatment of the condition, research volunteers are needed to help find a cure and improve the quality of life for those affected by IBD. Clinical trials are a crucial tool in the fight against these diseases. The partnership with ResearchMatch will help expand the number of IBD patients who can be reached with valuable information about clinical trials.
"Participating in research is one of the best ways to expedite the search for cures for IBD. New research helps both doctors and patients develop greater understanding of IBD," said Caren Heller, M.D., MBA, chief scientific officer for the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America. "For patients, the benefits of participating in research trials and studies may include access to new treatments, including diet, medication and surgical procedures, and helping others by contributing to medical research."