Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) includes Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). Both are increasingly common, chronic illnesses, currently affecting nearly 1 million patients in Europe. CD and UC affect patients early in life, seriously impairing their quality of life and resulting in enormous personal, social, and economic costs.There is evidence suggesting that genetic factors play a key role in IBD pathogenesis, pointing towards a polygenic mode of inheritance for CD and UC. However, to date studies have only addressed the influence of single mutations on IBD, resulting in a poor prediction of clinical course or response to therapy in individual patients. The IBDchip Project will develop an easy to use DNA array. This non-invasive tool will allow the simultaneous analysis of around 100 relevant mutations to predict the clinical evolution, the risk of developing IBD-related complications, and the likelihood of responding to certain drugs of each IBD patient. The project will have four main phases of work: 1. Two main retrospective studies including 1000 CD and 1000 UC patients across Europe. These studies will be aimed at defining the best combination of mutations resulting in an optimal prediction of each clinical outcome. 2. Three prospective studies specifically designed to address prediction of patients' response to immunosuppressive and anti-TNF therapies, which will validate the information provided by the retrospective studies. 3. A technical optimization process of the IBDchip, expected to result in a faster, cheaper, and easier to use tool. 4. Finally, the exploration of pathways to clinical service, ethical and legal issues, and cost-effectiveness of the IBDchip, to ensure its uptake in routine clinical practice. The main outcome of this project will be to provide doctors, for the first time, with a non-invasive, predictive tool to optimize treatment in IBD patients, thus resulting in better clinical outcomes and cost-effectiven'
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