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Biosensors based on membrane organisation to replace animal testing

Final Report Summary - BBMO (Biosensors Based on Membrane Organisation to Replace Animal Testing)

Five illustration projects with several subprojects were initiated during the first year, i.e. 2005 and successfully run during the whole project period. All partners were active in one or more projects, which lead to new collaboration projects within the consortium. This did indeed initiate an ongoing discussion between the partners leading to an enhanced integration between the research groups.

The five illustration projects did proceed successfully during the whole project time and resulted in several scientific contributions. So far five articles are published and at least eight more are expected as a direct consequence of the BBMO project. A similar amount of conference contributions has also been accomplished. The integration between the research groups in the consortium has resulted in new research collaborations that will certainly continue after the project end. This will have a large impact on those partners both in industry and academia that found new collaboration partners within the framework of BBMO. These excellent results were accomplished after a well planned kick-off meeting and an intense first period with scheduled internet conferencing and frequent e-mailing. Once the collaborations were initiated and started to become fruitful the work continued without much effort.

The strategic meeting was organised in June and attracted all partners. The meeting was held at a beautiful conference site, Stromback, at the Botnic Gulf close to Umea, Sweden. The participants were all well prepared. Posters were made to show the progress of the illustration projects and external speakers were invited to add some extra value to the seminar. The invited speakers were proposed by consortium members to become new partners in the consortium. Before the meeting a synopsis of the bearing ideas within the consortium had been sent out to them. The speakers were urged to focus on trying to show how their excellence could contribute to a future research project. The strategic meeting did lay the basis for a future grant application to the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

A prospective analysis was developed to support the future developments in membrane-based biosensing technology to be validated by comprehensive inter-calibration techniques. A general approach was initially applied that would be relevant to any biosensing system to replace animal testing. The excellences within the consortium were surveyed were all the competences and skills were identified. In this process some missing partners were also recognised.

A work programme consisting of a set of work packages was suggested in Stromback but had to be reconsidered considerably when the call was identified. One part of the old consortium together with invited new partners met in February in Tubingen Germany to finalise the work packages. A research application to FP7 was submitted 19 April 2007 and the name of the new consortium was NANO2MED.

Several new and unique research projects have been initiated throughout the project period although the project did not have any direct support for research. The main reason was the great enthusiasm among the many partners that brought in PhD students and post docs in the illustration projects, but also through the coordinator travelling to all partners, e-mailing and arranging web-conferencing.

The partners contributed to the project with PhD students that were paid from other research project and it was also possible to make use of laboratory facilities at the various locations. Some money from the present project could be used to pay for post docs actually working in the project. This made possible a surprisingly good scientific output.