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Content archived on 2024-05-29

European Lipidomics Initiative

Final Report Summary - ELIFE (European Lipidomics Initiative)

The primary aim of the 'European lipidomics initiative' (ELIFE) was to mobilise and organise key stakeholders, researchers and end-users in the area of metabolomics, especially lipidomics research, and to further define this field of research in terms of participants, scientific contents and strengths.

Objective 1: To network the field of metabolomics and to seek alliances with relevant stakeholders
The consortium should network and position the field of lipidomics. Other areas of metabolomics research like glycomics and signalomics (signalling lipids, lipid hormones) would be involved in all activities. Researchers, stakeholders from the health care profession and from industry with special emphasis on SMEs would be invited to join ELIFE activities at the earliest possible stage.
Objective 2: To link the field of metabolomics to the genomics and proteomics initiatives
One special challenge was to adapt bio-informatics as devised for genomics and proteomics to the field of metabolomics. The choice of the technology to be used would define the type of bio-informatics approaches necessary to deal with the large body of data expected from lipidomics and in a wider sense metabolomics.

Objective 3: To define a strategy for metabolomics research, using lipidomics as example
Lipidomics was subdivided into three areas of development: i) technology, ii) cell biology, and iii) health. Experts in these areas were to be joined in a series of workshops to define where these areas would gain most from a European collaboration and what direction of research would most likely bring breakthroughs. The topic of lipid rafts would be taken as a theoretical test case to define the kinds of experimental data that can be generated by high-throughput approaches in this field, and to determine how these data sets could be most useful for medical application.
Objective 4: To initiate an expertise platform on lipidomics
As a first step to fully mobilise the field, an awareness of the strength and expertise was to be created. Via a survey of expertise, to be published on the web and via a specific workshop on lipidomics and technology, a virtual expertise platform would be initiated and linked to the Euro Fed Lipid organisation. It was to become a test centre for bench marking of new lipidomics technology.
Objective 5: To hold both science-related as well as policy meetings
A series of scientific and strategic meetings had to be organised.
(a) Workshops with a focus on technology and terminology, on basic science and on medical applications of metabolomics and of lipidomics in particular.
(b) Networking meetings and applications meetings should join academic scientists across the life sciences, clinical laboratory scientists, clinicians and industrial representatives.
(c) The concluding conference should be open to policy makers as well as the above mentioned representatives, and specific round tables were to be organised for this purpose.