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Non-invasive clinical markers for diagnosis of endometriosis

Project description

Proteins and pathogens in endometriosis

One in ten women of child-bearing age suffer from endometriosis, a painful uterine condition causing pain and even disability. It can also lead to infertility. Despite its prevalence and serious consequences, the medical community does not know what causes it nor are effective treatments available. To make matters worse, definitive diagnosis requires invasive surgery. The EU-funded GLYCOMENDO project hopes to elucidate disease processes, leading to simpler diagnosis and potentially more effective treatments. The focus is on changes in levels of certain sugars on proteins and microbes in samples with mild and severe stage of endometriosis compared to controls. Outcomes could lead to biomarkers for non-invasive and accurate diagnosis of this disease and to lower rates of infertility.


Endometriosis is a chronic disease that affects 10% of all women of reproductive age. It is characterized by the ectopic growth of endometrial tissue outside the uterus and is a major cause of pelvic pain and disability. Endometriosis also has an adverse effect on fertility, with almost one third of patients failing to conceive. The aetiology of endometriosis is unknown and a definitive diagnosis of endometriosis requires invasive laparoscopic surgery, and treatment options are limited in number and efficacy. This research proposal will adopt an integrated, systems biology approach to finely characterize how circulating and local uterine glycoprotein profiles are altered in endometriosis, and how such profiles may be influenced by dysbiosis of the uterine microbial ecosystem including possible intracellular pathogen infection. Using our combined multidisciplinary expertise in glycomics, microbiome and gynaecology, we will use findings from this study to define how changes in glycosylation pattern and microbial profile that are associated with endometriosis may be developed as novel, non-invasive diagnostic markers for the disease. It may also provide insight into disease pathogenesis. Accurate diagnosis and effective treatment of endometriosis has the potential to significantly reduce the healthcare cost burden associated with current strategies and may increase success rates of pregnancy and live births in these patients. This collaborative translational research project will be primarily based at NIBRT (SME, host institution), with secondments in APC Microbiome Institute, University College Cork (UCC), and also at the Merrion Fertility Clinic (MFC) and University College Dublin Centre for Support and Training in Analysis and Research (UCD CSTAR).



Net EU contribution
€ 196 590,72
Fosters avenue mount merrion
4 Blackrock dublin

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The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Ireland Eastern and Midland Dublin
Activity type
Research Organisations
Other funding
€ 0,00