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Helena Filipsson Nyström
Photo: Johan Wingborg
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Helena Filipsson Nyström Group

Research group
Active research
Project owner
University of Gothenburg

Short description

Helena Filipsson Nyström, PhD, Associate Professor and Senior Consultant University Physician at Sahlgrenska University Hospital.

About Filipsson Nyström Group

Helena Filipsson Nyström, PhD, Associate Professor and Senior Consultant University Physician at Sahlgrenska University Hospital with specialist competences in internal medicine and endocrinology is a Wallenberg Clinical Researcher. She does translational clinical research on the patient group she also manage clinically – patients with hyperthyroidism, especially patients with the autoimmune form – Graves’ disease. She is also regional process-leader for this patient group, leader of the national working force for patients with hyperthyroidism, and the national representative in the Iodine Global Network.

The popular press has been filled with thyroid patient testimonials of their oft ignored and yet persistent mental challenges. Patient organizations highlight the need for research; they want acceptance of these thyroid-related mental symptoms, require biomarkers, and more specific treatments both for Graves’ disease (GD) and autoimmune hypothyroidism (HT) patients. But little is being done. Patients report feeling neglected by the health-care system, and health-care staff are frustrated, as persistent mental symptoms after treatment is not an acknowledged outcome. These symptoms may concern one-third of the 2100 patients diagnosed with GD, the most common form of hyperthyroidism, every year in Sweden. It is important for patients and physicians to gain an understanding of some of the mechanisms behind sustained MF, as there is currently no other option for patients than adapting to living with the condition.

The ultimate goals of her project are to define the persistent mental symptoms in GD and HT, and to identify biomarkers for diagnosis and prediction of persistent mental fatigue, so as to open a door for personalized treatment strategies. The objectives are to explore mental symptomatology, brain-related autoimmunity in blood and cerebrospinal fluid, and structural and functional brain changes in hyper- and euthyroidism (normal thyroid function), in those with persistent mental symptoms in comparison to mentally healthy GD patients and controls.

Her projects link the clinical and laboratory sides of our university and combines the available expertise around the autoimmune system, imaging specialists and knowledge related to the needs of the patients with persistent mental symptoms. This is particularly important because of the rapid development of novel therapeutic targets related to the immune system. Through a deeper understanding of the brain effects of the immune system in hyper- and euthyroidism (before and after treatment), she may find therapeutic targets for better designs of clinical trials, as well as molecular therapeutic follow-up. 

She is also the principle investigator for the SWIDDICH study- a randomised controlled study of iodine and selenium supplementation (important compounds for thyroid hormone production) during pregnancy with a children follow-up until school-age. This study will include 1264 women from four health care regions: Region Västra Götaland, Region South East, Region North, and Region Stockholm. The aim is to be able to show an IQ difference of at least 3 points in a sample of 788 children. This study may lead to changed recommendations to women living in countries with mild iodine deficiency during pregnancy world-wide.

Helena Filipsson Nyström - portrait
Photo: Johan Wingborg

Contact Information

helena.filipsson@medic.gu.se

Group Members

Erik Olsson

PhD, Imaging Specialist, PhD, Dept of Internal Medicine, University of Gothenburg, MedTech West

Mats Holmberg

PhD, endocrinologist, Department of Internal Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, and ANOVA Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm

Karin Tammelin

PhD student, ST-physician, Department of Internal Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, and Department of Medicine, Sahlgrenska University Hospital/ Östra

Sofia Manousou

PhD student, endocrinologist, Department of Internal Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, and Frölunda Specialist Hospital, Göteborg

Janna Eriksson

PhD student, AT-physician Department of Internal Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, and Skaraborg’s Hospital, Skövde

Agneta Lindo

Research coordinator, Department of Medicine, Sahlgrenska University Hospital

Prof em Helge Malmgren

MD and cognitive expert Department of Internal Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg

Prof em Robert Eggertsen

General practitioner, Department of Internal Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg,

Prof em Lena Hulthén

Nutritionist, Department of Internal Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg,

Collaborators

Prof Rolf Heckemann

Department of Radiophysics, University of GU, MedTech West

Ass Prof Hanna Augustin

Nutritionist, Department of Internal Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg,

Simon Skau

PhD student, MedTech West

Prof Justin Schneidermann

MedTech West

Ass Prof Birgitta Johansson, neuropsychologist, 

Associate Prof Anna Lundgren, Department of Clinical Immunology, Sahlgrenska University Hospital

Clas Malmeström

(Neurologist and PhD), Department of Neurology and Department of Clinical Immunology, Sahlgrenska University Hospital

Associate Prof Mats Bemark

Department of Clinical Immunology, Sahlgrenska University Hospital

Prof Magnus Domellöf

Pediatrics, Umeå University

Anna Chmielewska

Pediatrics, Umeå University

Ass Prof Caroline Lilliecreutz

Gynecologist, Linköping Unviversity Hospital

Ass Prof Carl-Johan Törnhage

Pediatrics, Skaraborg’s Hospital, Skövde

Erik Kindberg

PhD student, Pediatrics, Skaraborgs Hospital, Skövde