Our Mission


The Arthritis & Chronic Pain Research Institute supports biomedical research directed towards understanding chronic pain and its causes, including arthritis and cancer. We also fund research projects aimed at finding new possible therapeutics for the management of pain.

We aim to educate the public and other scientists about chronic pain with the scientific presentations and publications provided by the scientists we support, foster scientific collaborations in the field, and support high school, undergraduate and graduate students who wish to learn more about pain-related research.

Officers and Trustees

PresidentRichard A. Houghten, Ph.D.

C.F.O.Donald Cooper

Corporate SecretaryPamela Houghten

Assistant Corporate SecretaryMary Holmgren

TrusteeRobert S. Hodges, Ph.D.

TrusteePamela Houghten

TrusteeRichard A. Houghten, Ph.D.

TrusteeLarry L. Pelton

TrusteeGeorge B. Thornton, Ph.D.


We recently awarded a grant to scientists at Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies in order for them to continue their research in pain management.

Their specific focus is on finding compounds (possible drug treatments) which bind to the different types of pain receptors in the brain. These different pain receptors in the brain all are associated with the different kinds of pain relief and different side effects (respiratory depression, physical dependence, etc.).

Their work over the past 10 years has resulted in the discovery of several compounds which are very specifically active at one type of pain receptor. These compounds are being further tested and developed by a pharmaceutical company.

We have also helped to foster the continuing collaboration between these scientists and others whose research is focused on these same pain receptors. One such scientist directs her studies towards understanding the molecular basis of how these various active compounds affect the pain receptors. Her work is leading towards finding analgesics, as well as looking for potential therapies for addiction to narcotic medications.

Over the past three years, there have been 13 publications describing the research of the scientists we support. These publications are read by, and later referenced by, scientists throughout the world.

These same scientists have presented this exciting research at scientific conferences held worldwide. For example, three presentations were made at the 2nd International/17th American Peptide Society meeting in June 2001. This scientific meeting attracted nearly 1,500 scientists from many countries, as well as a Nobel prize winner and several members of the National Academy of Sciences. Over the past three years, this research has been presented in twenty-six (26) oral and poster sessions at similar conferences.