Prof Leonardo Punzi — Chair
Director of rheumatology (University of Padua)
Padua, Italy

Prof Punzi earned a degree in medicine and surgery from the University of Padua, a specialisation in rheumatology at the University of Milan, and a PhD in experimental rheumatology from the University of Rome. He has been a confirmed researcher, associate professor and full professor of rheumatology at the University of Padua, as well as a lecturer in medicine and surgery, and the specialisation in rheumatology and internal medicine, at the University-Hospital of Padua. Since 2003, Prof Punzi has been the director of the operative unit of rheumatology at the University Hospital of Padua. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Société Française de Rhumatologie and a member of several organisations, including the Italian Society of Rheumatology (SIR), Osteoarthritis Research Society International (OARSI), the European Science Foundation (ESF) and the New York Academy of Sciences. He has participated in the creation of guidelines and recommendations for the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) and other European bodies on topics including managing osteoarthritis (in knees, hands and hips), gout, knee swelling, diagnosis of gout, and diagnosis and initial management of calcium pyrophosphate arthropathy. Prof Punzi is the head of research for the department of medicine at the university of Padua. He is a member of the editorial boards for Aging Clinical and Experimental, Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology, Revue du Rhumatisme, Joint Bone Spine, Rheumatological Reviews and Frontiers in Pharmacology. Prof Punzi has authored approximately 250 papers in international journals and 600 papers presented at national and international conferences, focusing mainly on synovial fluid pathophysiology, intra-articular therapy, arthritis, microcrystalline arthritis, spondylarthritis and systemic autoinflammatory diseases.

Dr Tim L Jansen
Rheumatologist/medical Leader (Department of Rheumatology)
VieCuri Medisch Centrum – Venlo, the Netherlands

Dr Jansen trained in internal medicine at Academic Hospital St Radboud, Nijmegen, and Rijnstate Hospital, Arnhem – earning his PhD at the latter. In 1995 he began training in rheumatology and subsequently became a rheumatologist staff member in the Medical Centre Leeuwarden, carrying out research and co-authoring publications on biologicals in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and treatment modalities in gout. Dr Jansen was previously a staff member in the department of rheumatology at the UMCN St Radboud, and in 2014 became the medical leader in rheumatology at VieCuri MC. Dr Jansen is a member of the Dutch Society of Rheumatology. During his tenure as a board member, he participated in inter/national consensus meetings, and co-authored the consumer quality index in RA, national guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of RA, a national set of quality indicators in RA, and the national guideline, “Appropriate use of biologicals in rheumatic diseases”. Dr Jansen was the principal investigator of the TNF-inhibitor (TNFi) stop study (doi: 10.1002/art.39626), the Dutch POET (Potential Optimalisation of Expediency of TNF-i) and the POET-ultrasonography (US) study. Other gout research includes the Study for Updated Gout Classification Criteria (SUGAR) and the updated European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) gout guideline. Dr Jansen has also participated in several advisory boards on optimal pharmacotherapy in RA, psoriatic arthritis and gouty arthritis.

Dr Fernando Perez-Ruiz
Assistant head of the Rheumatology Division
Hospital de Cruces – Vizcaya, Spain

Dr Perez-Ruiz received a medical degree from the Basque Country University in Bilbao, Spain, and a PhD from Barcelona University. He is an assistant head of the rheumatology division at the Hospital de Cruces in Vizcaya. Board-certified in rheumatology, Dr Perez-Ruiz is a member of the American College of Rheumatology and Spanish Society for Rheumatology, and has collaborated with the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) Task Force for Gout and Outcome Measures for Rheumatic Arthritis Clinical Trials (OMERACT) group for chronic gout. He serves on the editorial boards of Arthritis Rheumatism (Care & Research), Bone Joint Spine and Reumatologia Clinica, and serves as a reviewer for more than 20 international journals. He has published more than 80 articles on topics related to rheumatology, with research interests including crystal-induced arthritis(particularly gout and hyperuricemia) lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia.

Prof Alexander So
Professor of rheumatology (University of Lausanne)
Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV) – Lausanne, Switzerland

Prof So earned a medical degree in the UK and completed a PhD in scientific research training before joining the Royal Postgraduate Medical School at Hammersmith Hospital as a senior lecturer in rheumatology. In 1994 he became a full professor of rheumatology at CHUV, directing the department of rheumatology and physical medicine. He was also the head of the musculoskeletal medicine department from 2014–2017. Prof So specialises in osteoarthritis, inflammatory rheumatic diseases, gout and other forms of arthritis, and supervises the rheumatology beds department of the CHUV. Besides his clinical and teaching duties, Prof So participates as an expert in various European (France, Netherlands, United Kingdom) and international (Hong Kong, New Zealand, United States) scientific commissions. He is a member of the peer-review committee of the academic journals Arthritis Research and Therapy and Annals of Rheumatic Diseases, and has published more than one hundred articles on the research he has conducted, including the β-RELIEVED and β-RELIEVED-II trials (doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2011-200908).