IMI 5th Call Open Info Day
IMI will hold its 5th Call Open Info Day in Brussels, Belgium, on Monday 27 February. The day will include an overview of IMI’s funding and intellectual property (IP) rules, tips and testimonies from people involved in ongoing IMI projects, and a presentation of the 5th Call topic ‘European lead factory: Joint European compound library and screening centre’ by the Project Coordinator. After the event, IMI will make the presentations and videos of the sessions available online. The 5th Call for proposals will be launched in the coming days. All information about the 5th Call is indicative, pending approval by the IMI Governing Board.
Sign up for the IMI 5th Call webinar
If you can’t make the Open Info Day but still want to learn more about the 5th Call topic, then IMI’s 5th Call webinar is for you. The webinar will be held on Monday 5 March at 10:30 CET and will last around an hour. It will feature a presentation of the Call topic ‘European lead factory: Joint European compound library and screening centre’ by the Project Coordinator, followed by a question and answer session.
IMI Executive Director in Nature journal on innovation challenge
‘The experience gained from ongoing IMI projects provides evidence that the sharing of know-how and data sets among pharmaceutical companies academic teams, and small businesses delivers results that could not have been obtained otherwise,’ writes IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman in a new paper published in Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics, a journal of the Nature Publishing Group. ‘IMI offers unique opportunities to foster collaborative innovation in the pharmaceutical sector,’ he concludes. ‘Besides its role as a funding source, the IMI provides the neutral platform that is essential for fruitful and transparent exchanges between the various stakeholders who can then combine their efforts to reinvigorate the development of innovative therapies.’
Catch up with IMI at DIA
IMI will have a strong presence at the forthcoming DIA (Drug Information Association) Annual EuroMeeting in Copenhagen, Denmark from 26 to 28 March. On 27 March, IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will chair sessions on IMI’s role in stimulating innovation, and translational medicine. That day will also see the launch of the IMI project EUPATI (European Patients Academy on Therapeutic Innovation) in a special satellite session. In the exhibition, IMI will have a stand (booth 233, near the main DIA information booth), as will IMI’s Education & Training projects (booth 220).
- Read the full programme of IMI’s involvement in DIA
News from the projects
- Eu2P online training programmes – applications now open for autumn intake
IMI Education& Training project Eu2P is now accepting applications for the next academic year for its certificate programmes and for Year 2 of its joint Eu2P Master in pharmacovigilance and pharmacoepidemiology. The deadline for applications is 24 June 2012. The courses are delivered online and qualifications are awarded jointly by the academic partners in the project. The Eu2P Master course covers medicines risk identification and quantification; medicines and public health; medicine risk communication; assessing the benefits of medicines; and regulatory processes. Currently, 10 students are following the Year 2 Master programme that began in autumn 2011; the students, who come from all over the world, are mostly already working in the pharmaceutical sector. Scholarships have been awarded to four of the students to facilitate access to the course.
- SafeSciMET launches courses on clinical safety
IMI Education and Training project SafeSciMET is launching three new courses in the area of clinical safety. The course ‘Clinical safety: pre-approval’ will run on 21-25 May in Basel, Switzerland; ‘Clinical safety: post-approval’ will run on 11-15 June in Lyon, France; and ‘Stratification, pharmacogenetics and drug safety’ will run on 27-31 August in Stockholm, Sweden. Applications for the new courses are now open via the project website. Meanwhile, the deadline for applications is looming for two other SafeSciMET courses: ‘Toxicogenomics and systems toxicology’ (deadline 12 March) and ‘Pathology interpretation in drug development’ (deadline 16 March). SafeSciMET courses feature lectures by experts from both academia and industry, with case studies drawn from industry. Courses can be taken individually or combined to work towards a diploma or Master degree in safety science.
- MARCAR demonstrates new way of tracking tumour development over time
IMI project MARCAR has demonstrated that magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be used to reliably detect liver tumours in mice when they are just 1 mm across – previously more invasive techniques were needed to pick up tumours of this size. The findings, published in the journal Toxicological Sciences, are important for two reasons. Firstly, because MRIs are non-invasive, they can be repeated at different stages of the study, meaning that fewer animals are needed to obtain reliable results. This will therefore help to reduce the number of animals used in experiments. Secondly, the fact MRIs can be used to detect tumours at an early stage and monitor their reversibility makes them an invaluable tool in assessing the cancer risk of potential drugs. Looking to the future, the work will ultimately help MARCAR achieve its goal of discriminating between spontaneously occurring liver tumours, and tumours that represent the unwanted side effect of a drug candidate.
- Open PHACTS tool shows early promise
A prototype of a novel data mining tool developed by IMI project Open PHACTS has proven its worth, identifying relevant information in just seconds, while a traditional human search took days. Open PHACTS is using semantic web technology to develop a tool called the Open Pharmacological Space (OPS). The OPS will allow scientists to analyse diverse databases and texts from both public and private sources in their hunt for new drugs and drug targets. A prototype platform is now ready, and when challenged with a simple query (to find compounds that block a given drug target), it delivered the information in a matter of seconds. In contrast, a traditional search took two scientists three working days each. ‘The OPS system not only correctly identified all compounds, it also found one additional drug, which was later on confirmed in a manual search,’ commented Open PHACTS academic coordinator, Gerhard Ecker of the University of Vienna. The team hopes to have a more advanced version ready for the full consortium to test by March.
CDISC European Interchange - discount for IMI consortium members
Non-profit organisations and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) involved in IMI consortia benefit from a 40% discount on registration and educational courses at the CDISC (Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium) European Interchange 2012 event, which will be held in Stockholm, Sweden on 16-20 April. The event provides participants with the opportunity to share progress, implementation experiences, and strategic ideas on worldwide data interchange standards across the global healthcare industry. The discount is offered through the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between IMI and CDISC, which was signed last year. Under the MoU, partners in IMI projects gain access to CDISC education and materials, among other things. To obtain information on how to take advantage of this offer, contact your project coordinator.
IMI presentations at forthcoming conferences
Below is an overview of some forthcoming events where staff from the IMI Executive Office and other IMI stakeholders will present IMI’s work and achievements.
- IMI 5th Call Open Info Day
Brussels, Belgium, 27 February 2012
IMI will present its rules and procedures as well as the 5th Call topic on the creation of a joint European compound library and screening centre.
Event web page
- IMI 5th Call webinar
Online, 5 March 2012
IMI will present the 5th Call topic on the creation of a joint European compound library and screening centre.
Event web page
- EORTC celebrating 50 years of progress against cancer
Brussels, Belgium, 6 March 2012
IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will give a presentation on IMI and cancer research during a session on ‘integrating biology in novel clinical trials’.
- Europharm SMC 10th International Partnering Meeting
Barcelona, Spain, 8 March 2012
IMI Senior Scientific Manager Hugh Laverty will give a lecture entitled ‘Incremental Research for SMEs – Critical Success Factors’ during the opening session of the event.
- DIA (Drug Information Association) Annual EuroMeeting
Copenhagen, Denmark, 26-28 March 2012
DIA's Annual EuroMeeting will feature a number of sessions on IMI and/or featuring speakers from IMI governance bodies and projects.
Event web page
- Innovation in Healthcare without borders
Brussels, Belgium, 16-17 April 2012
Representatives of IMI projects and governance bodies feature in the session on ‘EU research and innovation funding, a tool to remove borders within the EU and beyond’. IMI will also have a stand at the event’s exhibition.
- 49th European Renal Association – European Dialysis and Transplant Association (ERA-EDTA) Congress
Paris, France, 24 May 2012
IMI will hold a special symposium on ‘Drug-induced renal injury: the quest for sensitive biomarkers’ on the opening day.
- Societal Impact of Pain 2012
Copenhagen, Denmark, 30 May 2012
IMI Principal Scientific Manager Elisabetta Vaudano will give a presentation during a workshop entitled ‘Benchmarking, education and research programmes on Pain management in the European Union’.