Osteoarthritis and Crystal Arthritis

Image of Abhishek Abhishek

Abhishek Abhishek

Professor of Rheumatology, Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences



Abhishek is a Professor of Rheumatology at the University of Nottingham, UK, and Honorary Consultant Rheumatologist at the Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, UK. He qualified in 1999 from Seth GS Medical College in Mumbai (India), and completed residency in internal medicine from NSCB Medical College in Jabalpur (India). After initial medical training posts in Rhyl, Cardiff and Liverpool, he joined the Rheumatology and General Medicine Specialist Registrar training programme in Nottingham, UK (2005-2013). Here he developed a clinical and research interest in crystal arthritis. He completed a PhD on Calcium Pyrophosphate Deposition (CPPD) in 2012. He completed higher specialist training in February 2013, gaining dual Certification in General Internal Medicine and Rheumatology. His higher specialist training was interspersed with post-doctoral clinical research fellowship experience at The University of Birmingham.

After completing his clinical and research training in January 2013, he took up a substantiative NHS Consultant Rheumatologist post in Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, UK, where he worked till August 2014. He moved back to the University of Nottingham in September 2014 when opportunity arose, to take up a Clinical Academic appointment as Clinical Associate Professor of Rheumatology, and pursue his research interests. He was promoted to full Professor in August 2020.

Apart from crystal arthritis, his other research interests include epidemiology of autoimmune rheumatic diseases, osteoarthritis, clinical trials and clinical effectiveness studies using big-data, and evidence-based medicine. He has published over ninety-five research articles and contributed over fifteen book chapters in the field of rheumatic diseases.

He is currently the co-PI of American College of Rheumatology/European League Against Rheumatism CPPD classification criteria project, and co-Chair of the OMERACT CPPD working group.

He has diverse research interests including epidemiology of rheumatic diseases, clinical studies in crystal arthritis, osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia. Over the last 4 years he has had research funding as a principal investigator to the tune of £5.4 million from Arthritis Research UK, National Institute of Health Research, Medical Research Council, Rosetrees Charitable Trust, AstraZeneca, Oxford Immunotech, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust Charity, and the European League Against Rheumatism. He was previously the lead for musculoskeletal diseases and disability (MDD) module for undergraduate medical education at the University of Nottingham.

He is also the Founding co-convenor of British Society for Rheumatology Crystal Arthritis Special Interest Group, and on the editorial board of Rheumatology (Oxford). He is part of the European League Against Rheumatism Undergraduate School of Rheumatology and have given invited lectures at the British Society for Rheumatology, Gout crystal and hyperuricemia network (G-CAN), and European League Against Rheumatism annual meetings on several occasions.

He has supervised or co-supervised 10 PhD students to completion.

Expertise Summary

Diseases: Rheumatoid Arthritis, Crystal arthritis, Osteoarthritis, Pain

Methodologies: Clinical Trials (Pragmatic and Efficacy studies), Big Data Epidemiology (using Clinical Practice Research Datalink, UK Biobank), Systematic review, Classification criteria development, Outcome measure development, Ultrasound imaging,

Teaching Summary

Previous lead MDD Module Nov 2016 - May 2018

Lectures to medical students

Small group teaching in CP3

MSc and BMedSci/BScMPT students

Research Summary

Current research grants (Value, Dates (from-to), Funder)

  • Influenza and pneumococcal vaccination in adults with common inflammatory conditions treated with immune suppressing drugs: a study of vaccine uptake, clinical effectiveness, vaccine safety, and facilitators and barriers to vaccination. (£149,948, July 2021 - Dec 2022, National Institute of Health Research).
  • The development of risk-stratified, cost-effective, and acceptable blood-test monitoring strategies for inflammatory conditions treated with commonly used immune suppressing drugs: a multi-method study using evidence synthesis, modelling and qualitative research. (£413,069, Sept 2020 - Aug 2022, National Institute of Health Research).
  • ACR/EULAR classification criteria for CPPD. ($130,000, July 2019 - June 2021 ACR/EULAR)
  • Ultrasonography in Hyperuricaemia and Gout. (£20,000, Feb 2020-Feb 2022, British Council)
  • A primary care-based cohort study evaluating the utility of indefinite regular monitoring blood tests in detecting asymptomatic toxicity from long-term methotrexate and leflunomide prescription. (£149,653, Dec 2019 - July 2021, National Institute of Health Research).
  • What is the clinical and cost-effectiveness of using a goal-directed allopurinol-based treat-to- target protocol in people with recurrent gout attacks? (£1,584,590, Jan 2019 - July 2025, National Institute of Health Research).
  • Beta blocker use, osteoarthritis pain and total joint replacement in the general population: a prospective cohort study using data from the Clinical Practice Research Datalink. (£145,541, Sept 2018-June 2020, National Institute of Health Research)
  • Does increased expression of inflammatory genes influence gout onset and severity? (£21,516 , Oct 2017 - Mar 2021, Rosetrees Trust)
  • Omega-3 fatty acids for the prophylaxis of acute attacks of gout on initiating urate lowering treatment - feasibility study for RCT. (£162,618, June 2017 - Dec 2020, Arthritis Research UK)
  • Harnessing the potential of 17-HDHA a novel biomarker of OA pain status. (£394,952, July 2019 - June 2021, Arthritis Research UK)
  • Developing a complex package of care for knee pain - package development and feasibility RCT. (£255,000, Nov 2016 - Oct 2021, National Institute of Health Research)

Current PhD students: Title of thesis (Research Methodology, Year Registration)

  • Gene expression, polygenic risk score, and risk of gout (Gene expression, risk-prediction, 2017-2021*)
  • Developing and evaluating the feasibility of a nurse led non-pharmacologic complex package of care for knee pain (Clinical Trial, qualitative research methods, systematic review, 2017-2021*)
  • Morphological features associated with knee osteoarthritis (Imaging, Epidemiology, 2016-2020) - minor corrections

  • Development of a non-pharmacological treatment package for fibromyalgia (Systematic review, meta-analysis, Delphi exercise, 2017-2021)

  • Association between ultrasonographic assessed structural and inflammatory changes in hand osteoarthritis and hand function. (Systematic review, meta-analysis, imaging, 2018-2021)

  • Safety of paracetamol and NSAIDs (Systematic review, epidemiology 2017-2021)

  • Individualised exercise intervention for hip and knee osteoarthritis: A mixed method study (Systematic review, meta-analysis, Delphi, 2017-2021)

  • Exercise intervention for patients with knee osteoarthritis (Clinical trial, 2018-2021).

Selected Publications

Past Research

Completed Grant funded research:

  • Effectiveness and uptake of the seasonal trivalent influenza vaccine in autoimmune inflammatory rheumatic disease patients (£99,973, Feb 2017-Nov 2018, Arthritis Research UK).
  • Identifying patients at risk of frequent gout attacks- a prospective study (£19,530, July 2015 - Dec 2016, Oxford Immunotech)
  • Prospective study of benefits of a nurse led package of care in gout (£11,133 , Dec 2015 - Nov 2017 Nottingham Hospitals Charity)
  • Sons of gout study - Hour early in life does MSU crystal deposition actually begin? (£125,608, Dec 2015 - Nov 2017, AstraZeneca)
  • The development of EULAR Hand OA classification study (EULAR)

Completed PhD Students:

The epidemiology and natural history of ANCA Associated vasculitis in the UK: a response to The UK Strategy for Rare Diseases Epidemiology (2015-2018).

Academic Rheumatology

The University of Nottingham
School of Medicine
Clinical Sciences Building
Nottingham, NG5 1PB

email:Group Administrator