- Sign up now for the 2011 IMI Stakeholder Forum
- 4th Call for proposals – indicative topics and Open Info Day
- IMI announces start of eight new projects
- IMI holds symposium on Alzheimer’s disease drug discovery
- IMI 3rd Call enters 2nd stage
- News from the IMI projects
- IMI presentations at scientific conferences
Sign up now for the 2011 IMI Stakeholder Forum
Registration is now open for this year’s IMI Stakeholder Forum, which will be held on Thursday 12 May at the SYMA Centre in Budapest, Hungary as part of the World of Health IT (WoHIT) eHealth Week.
The plenary session will focus on how knowledge and data management can lead to innovation in patient healthcare and drug development. Other highlights of the day include a glance at IMI’s forthcoming 4th Call for proposals and presentations from top scientists of early results from current IMI projects. The day will also feature outlines of IMI’s scientific vision for the future and industry priorities.
For more information and to register, click here.
4th Call for proposals – indicative topics and Open Info Day
IMI has released details of the indicative topics for the forthcoming 4th Call for proposals, which is due to be launched in mid-June 2011. Please note that all information regarding the 4th Call topics is indicative and subject to change. Final information about the IMI 4th Call will be communicated after approval by the IMI Governing Board. Further information on the indicative topics can be found online here.
IMI will hold an Open Info Day featuring detailed explanations of the 4th Call topics and information in how to participate in IMI projects in Brussels in mid-June. The exact date and location will be advertised on the IMI website in the coming weeks.
IMI announces start of eight new projects
IMI has announced that it is funding eight new projects addressing key areas including cancer, immune-mediated diseases, infectious disorders and electronic health. This brings the total number of IMI-funded projects to 23. The 8 new projects, which have a combined budget of €172 million, were selected following IMI’s 2nd Call for proposals.
PREDECT, ONCOTRACK, QUIC-CONCEPT are all developing better tools for diagnosing and treating lung, prostate, ovarian, breast and colon cancers and are covered by IMI's 'efficacy' pillar, as are RAPP-ID and BTCure, which aim to facilitate the development of novel diagnostic tools related to infectious diseases and rheumatoid arthritis. DDMoRe, OPEN-PHACTS and EHR4CR fall under IMI's 'Knowledge Management' pillar in developing new methods dedicated to common standards and sharing data on common platforms for more efficient drug-development and patient treatments for the future.
Detailed factsheets of all IMI-funded projects can be found here.
IMI holds symposium on Alzheimer’s disease drug discovery
On 9 March 2011, IMI held a symposium entitled Public Private Partnerships boost Alzheimer’s disease drug discovery in Barcelona, Spain. The event, which attracted around 75 participants, was an official satellite symposium of the 10th International Conference on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Diseases (AP/PD 2011), one of the most widely-attended scientific meetings in the field.
The event featured presentations showcasing the work of the IMI-funded PharmaCog project. Other presentations discussed biomarkers in Alzheimer’s disease, the EU’s support for Alzheimer’s disease research and the key role of public-private partnerships in boosting the discovery of novel treatments.
The presentations are online here.
IMI 3rd Call enters 2nd stage
IMI received 32 Expressions of Interest in response to its 3rd Call for proposals, the deadline for which was in January. The independent experts evaluated the applications in February and by early March the IMI Governing Board had given its seal of approval to the ranking of the applications.
IMI has invited the coordinators of top-ranked applications to form full consortia with the corresponding EFPIA participants and submit full project proposals. The deadline for this 2nd stage is 15 June 2011 at 17:00 Brussels time.
Meanwhile, the Independent Observers have already compiled their report on the 1st stage of the 3rd Call. The report praises the way the Call was organised, publicised and evaluated, and finds that ‘the Stage 1 evaluations were conducted professionally and fairly’. The observers make some recommendations on how the process can be improved.
More information on the 3rd Call can be found here.
News from the IMI projects
- NEWMEDS advances schizophrenia research
In a remarkable and unprecedented collaboration in schizophrenia research, the companies involved in the NEWMEDS project have pooled their data to create a large collaborative dataset that brings together the data of 23 401 anonymized patients from 67 trials on 11 compounds in over 25 countries. This makes it by far the single largest database of clinical trial data ever amassed in psychiatric research. The academic community will greatly benefit from the partnership, as the exceptionally large and valuable database on schizophrenia will be made available to all participants in the project.
Read the full press release.
- MARCAR tracks down biomarkers
The goal of the MARCAR project is to identify early biological indicators (biomarkers) that can be used to predict the effects of non-genotoxic carcinogens (NGCs). Now scientists from the MARCAR consortium have used genome-wide profiling of changes to DNA methylation to detect early markers of NGC activity in rodents. The researchers have published their findings in the journal PLoS ONE and write: ‘This study contributes to understanding the scale and nature of drug-induced epigenetic changes in an in vivo setup relevant for drug safety assessment.’
More on MARCAR: www.imi-marcar.eu
- U-BIOPRED – new findings demonstrate value of data sharing
Work in the U-BIOPRED project has proven the value of data sharing by generating an important result in asthma research. Both GSK and Pfizer were working on a similar animal model of severe asthma, but when data from both companies was combined, it quickly became clear that the model would not be as useful as was hoped. If they had continued working on their own, it would have taken the companies months to realise this. Data sharing in U-BIOPRED has since been given a further boost by the presence in the consortium of a new partner in the form of pharmaceutical company Centocor B.V., a member of the J&J group of companies. In addition to expertise, Centocor brings to the consortium a knowledge management system called TransMART.
Elsewhere, U-BIOPRED has published research in the journal Thorax that will help to clarify the diagnosis of severe asthma, something that will help doctors to manage these patients more effectively. The paper provides information on what clinicians should check for when considering classifying a patient as having severe asthma. Developing more individualised characterisations of severe asthma contributes to U-BIOPRED’s goal of redefining severe asthma and lays the foundation for personalised treatments for severe asthma sufferers.
Finally, as part of its efforts to connect patients with researchers and clinicians, U-BIOPRED has launched an Asthma Art Contest. Anyone with severe asthma can enter the competition, and all art forms are welcome.
IMI presentations at scientific conferences
Below is an overview of some forthcoming events where staff from the IMI Executive Office will present IMI’s work and achievements.
- Exploratory Clinical Development World Europe 2011
London, UK, 18 May
IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will deliver a presentation entitled ‘Open Innovation in Pharma - un update from IMI’.
Event website: www.terrapinn.com/2011/explor
- Personalised Healthcare & CSF Biomarkers
Stockholm, Sweden, 3 May
IMI Principal Scientific Officer Elisabetta Vaudano will give a talk entitled ‘Examining the importance of research on biomarkers for CNS [central nervous system] with a focus on Alzheimer’s disease’.
Event website: www.labinnovator.com/events/events-lio34.html
- EFIC Symposium - The societal impact of pain
Brussels, Belgium, 4 May
Elisabetta Vaudano will give a keynote speech on IMI’s EUROPAIN project during a workshop entitled ‘Pain care in the future, societal requirements’.
Event website: www.sip-meetings.org/grt-sip/154700556.jsp