- Join IMI for a special event in Krakow, Poland
- Innovation in Action - IMI to highlight successes at European Parliament
- IMI 4th Call – Q&As published
- Watch IMI leaders on TV
- IMI States Representatives Group elects new chair
- New on the IMI website
- News from the projects
- IMI presentations at forthcoming conferences
Join IMI for a special event in Krakow, Poland
IMI is proud to announce that it is organising a session at the IV Congress of Polish Biotechnology and IV Eurobiotech 2011 in Krakow, Poland on the afternoon of 12 October. Eurobiotech runs from 12-15 October. Participants in the special IMI session will learn about IMI's achievements and hear about the many benefits of project participation. The session will also feature a spotlight on the benefits and opportunities offered by IMI to researchers in Poland and elsewhere. The event will close with a networking cocktail.
- Registration is free but obligatory – to sign up, visit the IMI website
Innovation in Action - IMI to highlight successes at European Parliament
IMI will present its latest achievements at a half-day conference in the European Parliament in Brussels on the morning of Thursday 6 October. The aim of the conference is to highlight the impressive achievements of IMI projects and demonstrate to policy makers, the media and others how IMI is helping to speed up the development of safer, more effective drugs.
The IMI conference forms part of a wider event, involving all Joint Technology Initiatives (JTIs), that runs from 4 to 6 October. The joint event will demonstrate the success of the public-private partnership model in driving research and innovation in diverse sectors across Europe.
IMI 4th Call – Q&As published
In order to ensure that the Call process is as transparent as possible, IMI is publishing its responses to questions received from potential funding applicants about the content of the Call 4 topics. The document can be found on the IMI website. Note that applicants may not contact the EFPIA project coordinators directly. All queries should be sent to the IMI Executive Office.
The deadline for submitting Expressions of Interest for the IMI 4th Call is 18 October 2011. The full Call text, as well as details of how to apply for funding, can be found on the IMI website. To find potential project partners, check out the IMI Partner Search tool.
Watch IMI leaders on TV
IMI formed the focus of two recent episodes of ‘Biocentury this week’, a US TV show that discusses some of the hottest topics in biotechnology. In a two-parter entitled ‘Public + Private: Turning Great Science into Medicine - and Jobs’, IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman explained how IMI is creating a new ecosystem for pharmaceutical research in Europe, and IMI Governing Board Member Roch Doliveux talked about the goals of open innovation and patient-driven translation.
Both episodes can be viewed online.
IMI States Representatives Group elects new chair
Gunnar Sandberg of VINNOVA, the Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems, has been named as the new chair of IMI’s States Representatives Group (SRG). The SRG is an advisory body comprising representatives from the EU Member States and other countries associated to the EU’s research programmes. Mr Sandberg will remain in the post for two years.
New on the IMI website
IMI’s projects are already generating a number of scientific publications. A list of these, including links to the articles, can now be found on the newly-created scientific publications page of the IMI website. Another new page includes links to some of IMI’s media coverage highlights.
News from the projects
- IMI experts make major diabetes research breakthrough
Researchers from the IMI project IMIDIA have generated a human pancreatic beta cell line that not only survives in the lab, but behaves in much the same way as beta cells in the body. When pancreatic beta cells malfunction, the result is diabetes. Scientists are therefore keen to study these cells in the lab to determine the underlying causes of diabetes and work out ways of treating and even curing it. Until now, researchers have had to rely on rodent beta cell lines for studies in the lab. Writing in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, IMIDIA researchers explain how they generated the novel human cell line and state: ‘These cells represent a unique tool for large-scale drug discovery and provide a preclinical model for cell replacement therapy in diabetes.’
- IMI team pinpoints molecule that puts the burn in sunburn
Scientists from the IMI project EUROPAIN have identified a molecule that causes the pain of sunburn, raising hopes for the development of new, more effective painkillers. Writing in Science Translational Medicine, the scientists explain how the molecule CXCL5 brings immune cells to the injured tissue, triggering pain and tenderness. ‘This study isn’t just about sunburn – we hope that we have identified a potential target which can be utilised to understand more about pain in other inflammatory conditions like arthritis and cystitis,’ commented King’s College London’s Stephen McMahon. ‘I’m excited about where these findings could take us in terms of eventually developing a new type of analgesic for people who suffer from chronic pain.’
- Read a press release about the findings from King’s College London
- PROactive puts activity monitors through their paces
IMI project PROactive has selected two activity monitors for further use in its studies on people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Activity monitors (small devices worn by the patient that measure activity levels) play a key role in PROactive, which is working to accurately determine the impacts of COPD on patients’ daily lives. The monitors picked by PROactive are the DynaPort MoveMonitor and the ActiGraph GT3X+. In total, PROactive tested 6 monitors on over 100 patients; monitors were scored for both accuracy and usability. According to Thierry Troosters of KU Leuven, the monitors that will be used ‘were considered valid according to our stringent criteria; they were judged as patient friendly by our main stakeholder, the patient; and they were judged as user friendly by investigators. Importantly both vendors of the monitors have pledged to help PROactive integrate data from the monitors into the project’s own, larger databases’. The monitors and a questionnaire will now be used to gain a comprehensive overview of physical activity in 250 COPD patients.
- EMTRAIN joins group promoting quality in higher education
EMTRAIN, on behalf of all of IMI’s Education & Training (E&T) projects, has become an affiliate of the European Association for Quality Assurance in Higher Education (ENQA), a pan-European body that aims to contribute to the maintenance and enhancement of the quality of European higher education. Joining the ENQA is an important move for the IMI E&T programmes, which are jointly developing standards for the quality assessment of continuous professional development courses in biomedical and medicines research. It is also important for the IMI life-long learning/continuous professional development initiative LIFETRAIN, in which the IMI E&T programmes work together with professional and scientific bodies, course providers, and employers across Europe to encourage them to recognise these quality standards. Finally, ENQA affiliate status will enable the IMI E&T programmes to keep abreast of the latest developments, engage with experts, and share experiences with other ENQA members.
- IMI lung disease projects to present findings to press and patients
On 28 September IMI projects U-BIOPRED and PROactive and the European Lung Foundation will hold a special event for patients and the public. IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will open the event with a presentation on how Europe is responding to the needs of respiratory patients. Other talks will explain how patients and scientists are working together in the U-BIOPRED and PROactive projects and Marc Decramer, President of the European Respiratory Society, will discuss the roadmap for respiratory research in the years ahead. There will also be time for attendees to ask questions of some of Europe’s leading respiratory researchers. The event is part of the 2011 European Respiratory Society (ERS) Annual Congress in Amsterdam.
- For more information and to register, visit the event web page
IMI presentations at forthcoming conferences
Below is an overview of some forthcoming events where staff from the IMI Executive Office will present IMI’s work and achievements.
- Pharma IQ Innovation in Phase I Clinical Development 2011
Verona, Italy, 14 September
IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will speak about ‘Precompetitive research in drug development: lessons from the Innovative Medicines Initiative’ and moderate the panel discussion on ‘Driving development through successful industry – academia collaborations’.
Event website: http://www.iqpc.com/Event.aspx?id=501446
- Predictive Toxicology Conference
Berlin, Germany, 14-16 September, Berlin
Maria Teresa De Magistris, IMI Principal Scientific Manager, will give a talk on IMI’s work.
Event website: http://www.marcusevans.com/marcusevans-conferences-event-details.asp?EventID=18068
- European Association for Predictive, Preventive and Personalised Medicine (EPMA) World Congress
Bonn, Germany, 16 September
IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will speak during a round table session on national and international strategies and granting in predictive, preventive and personalised medicine (PPPM).
Event website: http://www.epmanet.eu/index.php/world-congress
- Safety Pharmacology Society Annual Meeting
Innsbruck, Austria, 20 September
During a session entitled ‘Bridging Safety Assessment between Academic Regulators and Industry’, IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will give a presentation on IMI’s role as an interface between industry and academia.
Event website: http://www.safetypharmacology.org/am2011/index.asp
- Open Innovation Practitioners’ Consortium
Eindhoven, the Netherlands, 20-21 September
IMI Policy and Legal Manager Estefania Ribeiro will participate in a working group that will report to the entire consortium at the end of the meeting.
Event organiser: http://www.cfbi.com/index_files/openinnovation.htm
- Societal Impact of Pain symposium
Hamburg, Germany, 23 September
IMI Principal Scientific Manager Elisabetta Vaudano will give a talk entitled ‘Europain – understanding chronic pain and improving its treatment in Europe’.
Event website: http://www2.kenes.com/efic/Pages/Home.aspx
- European Respiratory Society (ERS) Annual Congress
Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 28 September
IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will speak at the ERS Patients and Media Session: Translating Europe’s respiratory research to patients and the media.
Event website: http://www.erscongress2011.org
- World Vaccine Congress
Lyon, France, 10-13 October
Maria Teresa De Magistris, IMI Principal Scientific Manager will give a presentation on ‘Immunosafety of vaccines in the context of Innovative Medicines Initiative’.
Event website: http://www.terrapinn.com/2011/world-vaccine-congress-lyon/
- World Pharma Innovation Congress Europe 2011
London, United Kingdom, 18 October
IMI Executive Director Michel Goldman will give a keynote presentation on ‘Taking the initiative: IMI’s mission to enhance innovation through pre-competitive collaboration’.
Event website: http://www.terrapinn.com/2011/pharma-innovation/
- IMI Workshop
Bonn, Germany, 26 October
IMI’s Legal Manager, Magali Poinot, will give a presentation entitled ‘Intellectual Property: one policy, multiple interests’.
Event organiser: http://www.nks-lebenswissenschaften.de/de/186.php
- Vaccines Europe
Brussels, Belgium, 30 November -1 December
Maria Teresa De Magistris, IMI Principal Scientific Manager will discuss vaccine safety in the context of Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI)
Event website: http://www.informaglobalevents.com/event/vaccines11