- Join the new IMI pool of patient experts
- IMI2 – Calls 18 & 19: updated topic texts published
- Sign up for the webinars on IMI2 – Calls 18 & 19
- Countdown to the IMI Stakeholder Forum 2019
- Meet IMI at BIO in Philadelphia
Join the new IMI pool of patient experts
IMI has involved patients in its projects and activities since the very beginning. Now, IMI wants to enhance the involvement of patients in all activities, for example by inviting them to provide input on scientific strategies; review project proposals; and assess the results of ongoing and closed projects. To facilitate this, IMI is establishing a pool of patient experts that is open to a wide range of patients (and family members and carers) with a chronic illness or condition that is linked to IMI’s Strategic Research Agenda. The conditions for being part of the pool are simple and people who are interested in getting involved can submit an expression of interest via the IMI website. When registering their interest, patients will be asked about their knowledge and experience of medical research and drug development, among other things. Whenever IMI has a task or activity that would benefit from patient input, the IMI Programme Office will turn to the pool to find the patient(s) with the most relevant knowledge and experience. For all tasks, patients will act in their personal capacity.
Benefits for patients of getting involved in this new initiative include the opportunity to influence IMI’s activities on both strategic and operational levels; work alongside experts from other sectors (academia, industry, regulatory, etc.); raise the profile of patients as equal partners in research in the IMI community and beyond; and learn first-hand about the latest research developments in their disease area.
Deadline for submitting expressions of interest: 16 July 2019
Find out more:
IMI2 – Calls 18 & 19: updated topic texts published
Updated drafts of the topics scheduled for launch under IMI2 – Calls 18 and 19 are now available on the Future Topics page of the IMI website. IMI2 – Call 18 is a standard two-stage Call with the following topics:
- Central repository of digital pathology slides to support the development of artificial intelligence tools
- Health Outcomes Observatories – empower patients with tools to measure their outcomes in a standardised manner creating transparency of health outcomes
- Improving patient access, understanding and adherence to healthcare information: an integrated digital health information project
- Establishing international standards in the analysis of patient reported outcomes and health-related quality of life data in cancer clinical trials
- Accelerating research & development for advanced therapy medicinal products
- Supporting the development of engineered T cells
IMI2 - Call 19 is a single stage restricted Call for proposals designed to support further research activities to allow existing successful IMI consortia to build on the achievements of their initial action, move onto the next step of the research challenge, and maximise the impacts of the initial action results. As such the Call is restricted to the initial consortia of actions that fulfil the following two conditions:
- funded through topics launched under Calls for proposals in 2014 and of 2015, since only these actions are sufficiently advanced in their implementation to be considered for followup research activities;
- derived from topics where the topic text already informed potential applicants about the possibility of a later restricted Call.
In practice, the consortia that meet these criteria are: ADAPT-SMART, BEAt-DKD, DO-IT, HARMONY, INNODIA, ITCC-P4, MOPEAD, NGN-PET, PRISM, RADAR-CNS, RESCEU, RHAPSODY, TransQST.
Both Calls are due to be launched on 26 June.
Sign up for the webinars on IMI2 – Calls 18 & 19
IMI will hold webinars on IMI2 – Calls 18 & 19 from Friday 14 June to Wednesday 26 June 2019 inclusive.
All webinars on the Call topics will feature a presentation by the EFPIA topic coordinator and time for questions and answers. The webinars represent an excellent opportunity to learn more about the Call topics, interact directly with the topic coordinators, and get in touch with potential project partners.
The webinar on IMI’s rules and procedures will include presentations of IMI's intellectual property policy and tips on the preparation of proposal submissions. IMI will also hold a dedicated webinar for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). This will cover elements of the different Call topics that may be of particular relevance for SMEs, as well as a presentation of IMI’s rules and procedures with a focus on aspects that are most important for SMEs.
The slides presented will be published on the event web page, along with recordings of all webinars and lists of participants who agreed for their details to be published.
Registration is free but obligatory.
Countdown to the IMI Stakeholder Forum 2019
Over 550 people have registered to take part in the IMI Stakeholder Forum 2019, which this year has the theme ’Brain health and disease in the digital era - 2020 & beyond’. The event will be held in Brussels, Belgium on Wednesday 12 June. If you can't make it in person, you still can watch it live and ask questions online - the webstreaming link will be available on the event web page a few days before the event.
Online registration to attend the event in person has closed - please send any queries to IMI_events@imi.europa.eu.
Meet IMI at BIO in Philadelphia
IMI will take part in this year’s BIO International Convention through the organisation of two sessions in the education programme and participation in the exhibition. The convention takes place in Philadelphia, US, from 3 to 6 June 2019 inclusive. An IMI session entitled ‘Getting to grips with data quality issues through international neuroscience initiatives’ will take place on Tuesday 4 June. Featuring speakers from IMI’s EQIPD project, it will discuss efforts made worldwide to deliver tools and resources to improve the quality of research data in neuroscience. A second IMI session, ‘Building a brighter future for children: How will large paediatric trial networks help to deliver safe, effective medicines?’ will be held on Wednesday 5 June. Among other things, it will highlight the work of IMI’s c4c project. IMI will also be present at the European Commission’s booth (no. 2701) at the BIO Exhibition. There will be people on hand throughout the event to answer questions about IMI as well as the European Commission’s wider research programmes. The BIO International Convention attracts 16 000+ biotechnology and pharma from around the world. The programme includes a strong educational programme with over 150 sessions addressing cutting-edge issues in a wide spectrum of life science and application areas. The event exhibition features over 1 800 exhibitors including several international pavilions.
c4c announces first studies on medicines in children
The c4c project has announced its first studies designed to increase our understanding of certain medicines that are commonly used in babies, children and young people. Currently half of all medicines used in children have never actually been tested in children; c4c is working to change this by creating a pan-European network for paediatric clinical trials. The project has now selected four studies that will leverage the fledgling network and implement new ways to integrate children’s and young people’s views in clinical trial design. They will also apply novel ways of evaluating medicines. The four studies address a range of disease areas and age groups. One will assess the effectiveness of paracetamol in premature babies with a serious heart defect called patent ductus arteriosus. Another will investigate the use of steroids in children with Kawasaki disease, which mainly affects the under 5’s and is characterised by a high temperature, rash, swollen glands in the neck, dry, cracked lips, and red eyes, fingers or toes. The third study focuses on posaconazole in children and young people with cystic fibrosis and an Aspergillus (fungal) infection. Finally, the project will run a trial on losartan in children and youngsters with osteogenesis imperfecta, a genetic disorder which results in fragile bones. All four studies will be led by academic institutions. Additional studies led by industry partners are also planned.
ROADMAP Data Cube allows interactive visualisation of Alzheimer’s data
IMI’s ROADMAP project has released its Data Cube, an online, three-dimensional ‘heat map’ that allows users to visualise how different data sources capture different Alzheimer’s disease outcomes at different disease stages. Furthermore, users can switch between the perspectives of people with dementia, carers, and health professionals. The Data Cube makes it easy to see what data sources are available, and where there are gaps. It comprises information from 65 data sources, including electronic health records, clinical trials, and cohorts, but does not provide access to any underlying data. According to the project, ‘Enabling the visualisation of the AD-related data availability in different types of European data sources and the intrinsic gaps has proven to be a powerful tool for the design, planning and validation of the models and strategies used to guide future recommendations to enhance AD research.’ ROADMAP is part of IMI’s Big Data for Better Outcomes programme.
European Lead Factory looking for novel screening programmes again
The European Lead Factory was launched in 2013 and set up a joint collection of half a million compounds and a state-of-the-art high throughput screening centre. By the time the project ended last year, they had delivered results to researchers in universities, small biotechs and large companies across Europe, helping them to identify potential new drug candidates and breathing new life into a range of disease areas. In many cases, the seeds sown by the European Lead Factory resulted in new patents, partnering deals, and two start-ups. Now, a new IMI project, ESCulab will build on the work of the European Lead Factory. This means that researchers with drug targets can apply to screen the project’s compound collection for hits and get help developing any compounds further if they like. Jon de Vlieger, coordinator of the ESCulab consortium at Lygature, said: ‘It’s truly exciting to continue the onboarding of new and innovative proposals for screening and provide high quality starting points for drug discovery to academics and SMEs throughout Europe. In an effort to broaden our scope we are not only looking for target-based approaches, but now also enable phenotypic screens.’
IMI’s vaccine projects in the spotlight
In the run-up to World Immunisation Week 2019, the IMI Programme Office caught up with three projects working in this important area.
- Vaccines are one of the most effective public health measures out, yet public distrust in immunisation programmes is limiting high vaccine uptake, resulting in outbreaks of vaccine-preventable infectious diseases that had almost disappeared. ADVANCE has paved the way for an open system for actively monitoring vaccine coverage, benefits and risks in Europe. Read more
- Zoonoses are infectious diseases that can be transmitted to humans from animals (and vice versa). IMI's ZAPI project is working to create new platforms and technologies that will facilitate a fast, coordinated, and practical response to new infectious diseases as soon as they emerge. Read more
- Every year, pharmaceutical companies develop vaccines designed specifically to combat the strains of influenza (flu) that are most likely to be in circulation the following winter. However, accurately predicting how much protection a new vaccine would actually offer against emerging virus types is far from easy. The FLUCOP project is developing tools to address this challenge. Read more
World Immunisation Week is organised by the World Health Organization at the end of April every year.