On 02 November 2022, Hemme Hijma successfully defended his PhD thesis titled ‘Experimental pain models for the evaluation of next-generation analgesics in clinical pharmacology studies’ at Leiden University!
Within the field of pain but especially neuropathic pain there is still much to be gained, as illustrated by the unmet medical need and limitedly efficacious drug treatments currently available. A key contributor to chronification of neuropathic pain is central sensitization, which may manifest clinically as hyperalgesia, a symptom non-existent in healthy individuals. Models that can induce hyperalgesia and tools that can appropriately assess altered nociceptive functioning in early-phase drug studies are sought-after, as they may aid in examining the potential of drugs as (neuropathic) pain treatment. Continuing efforts are made to expand and improve our knowledge in this field. In his thesis, Hemme describes CHDR' latest contributions that were based on two main objectives. One was to develop and validate methods for early-phase clinical drug studies with improved accuracy or resemblance to clinical pathophysiology, to improve the evaluation of a drug’s mechanism of action and analgesic potential. The other objective was to actually test novel drugs that are proposed to have superior clinical utility, using methods we believed to be appropriate for evaluating those drugs’ analgesic effects.
Read his thesis here.
Hemme was supervised by promotors Prof. dr. G.J. Groeneveld and Prof. dr. J. Burggraaf.