About Us

The Chronic Pain Research Alliance (CPRA) is the country’s first and only research-led collaborative advocacy effort dedicated to changing the lives of those with Chronic Overlapping Pain Conditions (COPCs).  Chronic Pain Research Alliance Initiative,
The TMJ Association, Ltd.


Our Mission

With the ultimate goal of advancing timely diagnoses and effective evidence-based medical management for individuals affected by COPCs, the CPRA works with invested stakeholders:

  1. Promote high-quality research on chronic overlapping pain conditions
  2. Translate research findings into information for patients and educational training programs for clinicians
  3. Drive the development of safe and effective treatments for these conditions   


Our Vision for the Future            

With the advancement of CPRA programs, we envision a future where individuals with COPCs will receive a timely and accurate diagnosis, followed by high-quality, comprehensive medical care and safe and effective treatment that is informed by the latest and most innovative scientific evidence.

In the process, these future goals will also be attained:

  • Increased federal and private investment in COPCs research that is coordinated, standardized and collaborative
  • Informed and educated health care providers
  • Informed and empowered patients
  • Development of safe and effective therapies specific to COPCs
  • Maximized taxpayer dollars and decreased costs


CPRA’s Major Achievements & Milestones 

May 2015: CPRA releases its second white paper, Impact of Chronic Overlapping Pain Conditions on Public Health and the Urgent Need for Safe and Effective Treatment

March 2015: CPRA meets with members of U.S. Congress to discuss and prioritize FY2016 federal research priorities for COPCs

January 2015: The NIH Office of Pain Policy develops a Working Group to guide the process of creating a Common Data Elements program and data-sharing repository for COPCs. CPRA Scientific Advisory Council member serves as co-chair and CPRA co-founders serve as members of the Working Group.

September 2014: With the goal of maximizing the federal research investment in COPCs, the NIH convenes the second federal meeting on COPCs, specifically to develop a NIH Common Data Elements program and federal data-sharing repository. This was called for in FY2015 U.S. Senate report language and included several CPRA Scientific Advisory Council members and CPRA co-founders.

September 2014: Co-sponsored by the NIH, The TMJ Association focuses its 7th Scientific Meeting on the genetic and epigenetic basis of COPCs

June 2014: NIH releases the first federal research Funding Opportunity Announcement on COPCs, co-sponsored by six NIH Institutes, Center and Offices

2013: CPRA obtains 2013 Senate Appropriations LHHS Report language for Chronic Overlapping Pain Conditions in the NIH Office of the Director and HHS Office of the Secretary

March 2013: NIH releases the Overlapping Conditions Workshop summary report. CPRA also provides a brief written summary of Overlapping Conditions Workshop for patients and the public.

August 2012: NIH holds the first federal workshop on COPCs and subsequently publishes the resultant research recommendations

August 2012: Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) sent a letter to the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Dr. Francis Collins, to commend the upcoming NIH Workshop on Chronic Overlapping Conditions (including Temporomandibular Disorders) and to urge the NIH to "lay out clear and concrete recommendations for an aggressive, trans-NIH research agenda..." to accelerate scientific progress on these conditions.

February 2012: U.S. Senate holds the first hearing on chronic pain, Pain in America: Exploring Challenges to Relief, which includes the testimony of CPRA co-founder Christin Veasley and Scientific Advisory Council members Drs. William Maixner and Philip Pizzo  

September 2011: Co-sponsored by the NIH, The TMJ Association focuses its 6th Scientific Meeting on the mechanism, diagnosis and treatment of COPCs

Fall 2011: The NIH establishes a Trans-NIH Overlapping Chronic Pain Conditions Working Group, which includes 12 NIH Institutes/Centers and whose purpose is to assure coordination of research efforts across NIH on COPCs

June 2011: CPRA co-founded testifies before the Institute of Medicine (IOM) Committee on Advancing Pain Research and Education Committee and submits [CPRA’s 2010 white paper – add crosslink] for review. As a result, the historic IOM report, Relieving Pain in America: A Blueprint for Transforming Prevention, Care, Education and Research, includes vital information on COPCs.

May 2010: CPRA kicks off the Campaign to End Chronic Pain in Women with a standing room only event on Capitol Hill, releases its first white paper, Chronic Pain in Women: Neglect, Dismissal and Discrimination, and launches website featuring a newly developed video, Through the Maze. The campaign, which continues through 2012, raises awareness of chronic pain conditions that disproportionately impact women, as well as the neglect, dismissal and discrimination faced by women suffering from chronic pain.

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