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Light and Organic Nanotechnology for Cardiovascular Disease

Objective

Cardiovascular (CV) disease is the leading cause of mortality and morbidity worldwide, with an increasing incidence in the aging population and a huge socio-economical impact. Heart failure (HF), the common end point of virtually all CV disorders, displays the greatest negative impact on quality of life, leading to the disruption of daily management and increasing dependence on care-givers. Unfortunately, an effective pharmacological treatment is currently lacking, as it is not possible to reverse disease progression; as a consequence, the long-term survival remains poor, and heart transplantation is the only possibility for end-stage HF patients. Thus, a breakthrough approach to preserve or, at least, restore cardiovascular function and to rescue systemic blood perfusion is urgently required.
LION-HEARTED will demonstrate a novel optoceutic platform, based on synergistic combination of light and organic nanotechnology, to restore cardiac function and vascularization, by modulating fate and proliferation of main cardiovascular cell types. Optical modulation will provide unprecedented spatio-temporal resolution, lower invasiveness, and higher selectivity in respect to traditional electrical and pharmaceutical control methods. Organic semiconductors will act as efficient, highly biocompatible phototransducers, able to trigger biological pathways relevant to cardiac repair, with a minimally invasive and gene-less approach. This strategy will circumvent most of the hurdles currently limiting the efficacy of molecular therapies, by directly stimulating the reparative phenotype of resident cardiac progenitors, cardiomyocytes, and of circulating endothelial cells homing towards the heart after an ischemic insult. The final outcome will be the realization of a proof of concept, implantable device for enhancing cardiac repair in ischemic, aneurysm and stenosis in vivo animal models.

Field of science

  • /medical and health sciences/clinical medicine/transplantation
  • /natural sciences/physical sciences/electromagnetism and electronics/electrical conductivity/semiconductor
  • /engineering and technology/nanotechnology
  • /social sciences/sociology/demography/mortality

Call for proposal

H2020-FETOPEN-2018-2019-2020-01
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Funding Scheme

RIA - Research and Innovation action

Coordinator

FONDAZIONE ISTITUTO ITALIANO DI TECNOLOGIA
Address
Via Morego 30
16163 Genova
Italy
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 509 458,75

Participants (7)

UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI PAVIA
Italy
EU contribution
€ 305 000
Address
Strada Nuova 65
27100 Pavia
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
HUMANITAS MIRASOLE SPA
Italy
EU contribution
€ 450 000
Address
Via Manzoni 56
20100 Rozzano (Mi)
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITAET MUENCHEN
Germany
EU contribution
€ 272 250
Address
Arcisstrasse 21
80333 Muenchen
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
UNIVERSITAT LINZ
Austria
EU contribution
€ 285 250
Address
Altenberger Strasse 69
4040 Linz
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
ALMA MATER STUDIORUM - UNIVERSITA DI BOLOGNA
Italy
EU contribution
€ 279 250
Address
Via Zamboni 33
40126 Bologna
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
UNIVERSIDAD DEL PAIS VASCO/ EUSKAL HERRIKO UNIBERTSITATEA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 313 475
Address
Barrio Sarriena S N
48940 Leioa
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
CHARITE - UNIVERSITAETSMEDIZIN BERLIN
Germany
EU contribution
€ 489 730
Address
Chariteplatz 1
10117 Berlin
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments