Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

TRANSEURO: An Innovative Approach for the Treatment of Parkinson's Disease

Contributed by: Dando, Weiss @ Colucci Ltd

WHAT IS TRANSEURO?

Transeuro is a European research consortium with the principal objective of developing an efficacious and safe cellular treatment methodology for patients with early Parkinson’s disease. The challenges of Transeuro include the step-by-step optimization of the delivery of fetal dopaminergic midbrain grafts for patients with Parkinson's disease.
The consortium is composed of 14 partner institutions representing hospitals, research institutes, small SMEs and large pharmaceutical companies located in UK, Sweden, Germany France and Austria. They are working together in a new round of experimental work and fetal cell therapy trials in Parkinson's disease. This 5 year research project is funded by the 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission, and was launched in January 2010. The project is coordinated by Prof. Roger Barker from Cambridge University (UK).
We present below some of the Transeuro research highlights from the last 12 months

FIRST PATIENTS TO RECEIVE THE TRANSPLANT IN AUTUMN 2012

For the Transeuro study, patients have been recruited in five clinical centres located in Cambridge, Cardiff, London, Freiburg im Breisgau and Lund. To date 121 of patients have been recruited to the first, observational, part of study (Study 1). These recruited patients undertake a series of cognitive, motor and psychiatric tests. From this cohort 20 patients will randomly be chosen and to be offered a transplant surgery (study 2). It is expected that the first patient will be grafted with fetal VM tissue in September 2012. The outcome from this grafting will then be assessed and compared to the non-grafted patients in the observational study.

TRANSEURO OUTREACH ACTIVITY

Establishment of an appropriate communication strategy within the Transeuro consortium and associations supporting patients with PD and their care givers is an important part of Transeuro’s mission. The Transeuro management team has been developing an outreach programme within the first two years of the project which will be implemented during the next few years. This includes the development of a public web site for Transeuro, a flyer that is distributed at a number of different relevant public events as well as presentations of the Transeuro consortium to local and national patient communities. The first public event organized by Transeuro for PD patients, their families and patient organisations’ representatives took place on June 1st 2012 in Freiburg im Breisgau in Germany. About 170 attendees from the local PD patient community, strongly interested in the Transeuro PD treatment approach participated in this event. The event consisted of lectures given by leading PD specialists from the Freiburg University Clinic, PD Dr Christian Winkler – neurologist; and Prof. Guido Nikkhah – neurosurgeon. These talks were then followed by a talk from Paul Just and Walburg Steurer from the University of Vienna who addressed public perception of fetal cell therapy and related ethics issues in Germany. The research of the Ethical Group in TRANSEURO involves the establishment of a link between science and society by setting up focus groups composed of representatives of different professions, educational levels, interests and age. These focus groups will constitute a “societal observatory” for fetal cell based research and therapy, connecting TRANSEURO with society in a novel way, which will help to feed back social sensitivities into the project, increase its social sensitivity and empirically test the ethical governance strategy of TRANSEURO. Our first impression following this public event was that it has been very well received by the patients and their families. We have furthermore received a large interest from several patients who wish to become a part of the Transeuro clinical study. Following this first successful experience, another public event is now planned in Lund, Sweden for the end of the year.

TRANSEURO ANNUAL MEETING

The 3rd Transeuro Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held in Bellagio, Italy on 20th -23rd April 2012. The meeting was organized jointly with another EU-FP7 funded consortium, Neurostemcell - which focuses on the use of stem cell therapy as an approach to neurodegenerative diseases, especially Parkinson´s and Huntington´s disease. Neurostemcell and Transeuro both share similar experimental and pre-clinical approaches and there is a large overlap of partners. The meeting gathered about 100 participants from both consortia, and promoted lively and constructive discussions on the optimal way to deliver cell based therapies to Parkinson’s and Huntington disease patients.

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    Dando, Weiss @ Colucci Ltd
    Winterthurerstrasse 190
    8057 Zurich
    CH
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Countries (5)

  • Austria, Germany, France, Sweden, United Kingdom
Record Number: 130867 / Last updated on: 2012-06-18
Category: Policy making and guidelines
Provider: WIRE
Revision: 0