Keloid Research Program

Keloids are benign skin tumors that result from a dysregulated wound-healing process in genetically predisposed patients. Despite their benign nature, keloids constitute a severe aesthetic and, in some cases, functional problems with important repercussions on patients' quality of life. Treatment of keloid is an area of unmet medical need. There are no wholly satisfactory treatments for his disease.

Keloid disorder has not attracted the attention of research community. Unfortunately, due to the social stigma of Keloid and the economical status of the population that is involved in Untied States, mostly African American, this disease has not received the attention that breast cancer or other conditions have received.

I am quite passionate about keloid research. It is only with good laboratory and clinical research that we can find better treatments for keloid. This disease has not captured the interest of research community; as such we have very limited knowledge about it.

My approach to this disease is a broad and comprehensive, spanning from basic science and laboratory work to therapeutic trials, from epidemiological studies to psychological assessment and research of the impact of the disease on patients. Below is list of my current research interests:

1-Genomics research to identify the key driving genes that are involved in pathogenesis of this disease.

2-Research in proteomics, signal transduction pathways and ligands to find druggable targets and innovative treatments.

3-Research in pathogenesis of keloid as it pertains to certain known conditions that trigger development of keloid. This study is in part supported by Rockefeller University's Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences; RUCCTS Grant # 2UL1RR024143 from the National Center for Research Resources, National Institutes of Health.

4-Establishment of a Keloid Tissue Bank which will allow ample access to keloid tissue for laboratory research.

5-Therapeutic Research of investigating the efficacy and of marketed drugs that can have an impact on the pathogenesis of keloid.

6-Epidemiological Research to study the natural history and clinical behavior of this disease as well as true incidence and prevalence of keloid disorder among various ethnic groups.

7-Psychological Research into the impact of the disease on human behavior and limitations caused by keloid in the life of patients.

To achieve the above goals, I have developed seven clinical studies. All these seven studies have been submitted to my local IRB at St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital. Trials 11-01, 11-04 and 11-07 have already been approved and are accruing. The rest are pending review by my IRB.

Trial 11-01: Web Based Investigation of Natural History of Keloid; An Online Survey of Patients with Keloid. The aim of this trial is to conduct a "10,000 patients" survey on the natural history of their keloids, and to explore patterns of clinical presentation, response to treatment and correlation with the ethnic background. This trial will provide valuable information about the prevalence of different keloid phenotypes.

Click HERE for the link to this study's website

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Trial 11-02: A Genomic and Molecular Research to Identifying Molecular Markers and Signal Transduction Pathways in Keloid; and Correlations with the Natural History of the Disease. The aim of this trial is to establish a prospective and on going keloid tissue bank whereby keloid tissue samples and a sample of normal appearing skin will be collected from at least 100 patients. Grant application was submitted to Rockefeller University for partial funding towards whole genome sequencing of keloid tissue as well as mononuclear peripheral blood cells to detect causative mutations which may contribute to keloid tissue formation.

Click HERE for the link to this study's website

Click HERE for the link to this study's listing on ClinicalTrials.gov website

Trial 11-03: A Therapeutic Trial of intralesional bevacizumab in patients with non-pedunculated keloids. The aim of this trial is to establish safety and efficacy of intralesional bevacizumab in patients with flat keloids. Several publications have reported on up-regulation of VEGF pathway in keloid tissue.

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Trial 11-04: Epidemiology Study of Keloid. Aim of this study is to determine the true epidemiology of keloid in general population. This will be a web based as well as paper questionnaire that is intended for mass distribution and collection of data. Sample size of this trial is (minimum of) 100,000. This will be a global trial.

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Click HERE for the link to this study's listing on ClinicalTrials.gov website

Trial 11-05: Phase II trial of sorafenib in patients with extensive keloids. Aim of this trial is to establish safety and efficacy of orally administered sorafenib in patients with extensive keloids. Various biological pathways are dysregulated in keloid tissue, among which are p53/apoptotic pathway, TGF-B as well as VEGF pathways, all of which sorafenib can inhibit and regulate.

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Click HERE for the link to this study's listing on ClinicalTrials.gov website

Trial 11-06: The Study of Psycho-Social Impact of keloid. Aim of this trial is to establish the psycho social impact of keloid disorder on the individual.

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Trial 11-07: Keloid Radiation Registry. Aim of this trial is to establish safety and efficacy radiation therapy in treatment of keloid. Radiation therapy has serious long term side effects, including causation of cancer, etc. This study aims to clarify the role of radiation therapy in keloid disorder.

Click HERE for the link to this study's website

Click HERE for the link to this study's listing on ClinicalTrials.gov website