Archive for July, 2015

Organ Donation: European Commission Adopts Two Financing Decisions



On 10 July 2015, the European Commission published two financing decisions: 
  • On the pilot project “The Effect of Differing Kidney Disease Treatment Modalities and Organ Donation and Transplantation Practices on Health Expenditure and Patient Outcomes”.
The Commission adopted the annual work programme for the implementation of the pilot project and the maximum contribution from the EU for 2015 is set at Eur 1 000 000. 
This pilot project will compare, from a micro- and macro-economic perspective, the various treatment modalities for Chronic Kidney Diseases (CKD) in EU Member States (and associated countries). 
The first goal is to provide an overview of the different treatment modalities and the factors that influence the selection of those modalities. A second objective is to support Member States’ efforts in putting in place operational tools (registers) to follow-up living donors and transplanted patients, based on the experience learned and recommendations formulated by previous EU funded projects. The pilot project will be implemented by a call for proposals managed by DG SANTE.
Read the decision here and the annex of the decision for project details and eligibility criteria here
  • For 2015 for the pilot project “Platform for increasing organ donation in the European Union and neighbouring countries: EUDONORG 2015-2016F”.
The Commission adopted the annual work programme for the implementation of the pilot project and the maximum contribution from the EU for 2015 is set at Eur 600 000. The pilot project will focus on training and social awareness to encourage public reflection on organ and tissue donation. It will include training for health professionals and social activists, networks and professionals (for example patients support groups, journalists, communication offices of healthcare establishments or national/regional authorities) who will be trained on how to best identify donors, how to best organise donation activities and how to pass on the main positive aspects of donation within the hospitals and to the rest of society.
In a first phase the selected contractor will develop a “train the trainers” course. The second phase will involve the organisation of several communication events (e.g. awareness or information days, journalist workshops). These events shall include information on deceased and living donation as well as on organ and tissue donation. The project will be implemented through a procurement managed by DG SANTE.
Read the decision here and the annex to the decision here


IMI Launches 5th Call for Proposals under IMI 2 Programme

IMI launches €95 million Call for proposals with focus on Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes,  patient involvement

The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) has launched its 5th Call for proposals under the IMI 2 programme.  IMI 2 – Call 5 has a total budget of €95 million and features 6 topics. Of these, four focus on  different aspects of Alzheimer’s disease, one focuses on diabetic kidney disease, and one addresses patient input on assessments of the benefits and risks of medicines. Four topics focus on Alzheimer’s disease, an area where there is an urgent need for new treatments.
Inflammation and Alzheimer’s disease: This topic aims to identify new drug targets for Alzheimer’s disease focusing on two proteins (called TREM2 and CD33) that are linked to inflammation and are thought to affect people’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Amyloid imaging biomarkers: Many people with Alzheimer’s disease have clumps of protein called amyloid plaques in their brains. This topic will seek to review the usefulness of knowing a patient’s amyloid brain status for diagnosis and treatment, and determine the value of amyloid imaging in drug development. Alzheimer’s disease and patient engagement: Dementia researchers are increasingly focusing their efforts on finding ways to prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s symptoms in the first place.
The goal of this topic is to identify the most effective ways of identifying and engaging with people who are in the very earliest stages of the disease. This will add to our understanding of the early stages of the disease, help patients access support from early on in their disease, and facilitate recruitment for clinical trials. Apolipoprotein E (ApoE) biology: People who have the ApoE4 gene are at greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. This topic will explore precisely how ApoE4 influences the development of Alzheimer’s disease and pave the way for new treatment strategies for Alzheimer’s and better identification of individuals at greatest risk for developing the disease. 
The topic on diabetes is designed to address the need for biological markers of diabetic kidney disease (DKD). DKD is a common complication of diabetes; the biological markers will add to our understanding of DKD and will advance the development and evaluation of new treatments for DKD. In line with IMI’s goal of boosting patient involvement in research, the Call also features a topic that will explore when and how best to gain patients’ input on the benefits and risks of medicines, at all stages of the drug development life cycle, to inform decision-making processes. Irene Norstedt, IMI Acting Executive Director commented: ‘With the launch of this Call for proposals, IMI once again affirms its commitment to tackling some of the biggest public health challenges facing Europe today – Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes. At the same time, the fact that we have two topics dedicated to patient engagement underlines IMI’s role as a platform for multi-stakeholder collaboration.’ 
The deadline for submitting short proposals is 13 October 2015. Half of the Call’s budget (€47.5 million) comes from the European Commission through the Horizon 2020 programme for research and innovation. The other half will be contributed by EFPIA companies involved in the projects as well as other Associated Partners. These groups do not receive any funding from IMI, but contribute ‘in kind’ with their researchers’ time, access to resources and equipment for example.


Health Priorities of the Luxembourg Presidency: focus on patient and innovation

lux presidency
The Luxembourg Presdiency of the Cuncil of the European Union has published its priorities for the term 1 July- 31 December 2015. Regarding Healht, the Presidency will make every effort to facilitate the creation of a strong regulatory framework providing European citizens with quick access to safe and high-quality medical devices, whilst promoting the innovation and competitiveness of the European market. Further, it will initiate a process of reflection on improved access to personalised medicine and on adopting an innovative approach to tackling dementia. The Presidency will assess the management of the Ebola epidemic. Improving the protection of European citizens in the event of a nuclear or radiological emergency will also be addressed.