Over 7000 allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplants (HSCT) are carried out each year in Europe alone, as a treatment for leukaemia and lymphoma. Techniques and cure rates are improving but the overall survival rate remains between 40-60%. This project will develop new proteomic, biological and genomic tests and tools for early diagnosis and monitoring of patient response to novel therapeutics for the most severe complication of HSCT; graft versus host disease (GvHD) and will bring to the clinic a new generation of diagnostics that will significantly improve HSCT therapy and patient outcome. The Consortium unites 5 European SMEs with expertise and markets in genomic and proteomic testing, diagnostic assay development and biochips, with clinical partners selected for their world leading research in HSCT and access to clinical samples and patient groups. The project will focus on the role of relevant genes and biomarkers associated with acute and chronic GvHD, using retrospective samples from established biobanks and prospective clinical trials to: 1) Identify novel bio and genomic markers for diagnostics 2) Develop novel diagnostic tools using genomics, proteomics, in vitro bioassays and biochips 3) Test the new diagnostics in animal models & on clinical samples 4) Exploit the new tools for commercial use The above will be realised by: ' Development of diagnostic tests using single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) analyses (SME IMGM), based on results from previous EC funded research (EUROBANK, TRANSEUROPE). - Using proteomics via mass spectrometry (evaluation/development of diagnostic patterns (SME MOSAIQUES), ELISA kits (SME APOTECH) and protein biochip prototypes (SME ORLA), for the development of fast high throughput technologies. - Development of novel reagents for monitoring graft versus leukaemia, GvHD and targeted therapy (SME MULTIMUNE; SME NASCACELL). - Comparative studies in an autoimmune disease model of inflammation; rheumatoid arthritis.
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Funding SchemeSTREP - Specific Targeted Research Project
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