Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

DCU world class “early-warning” research on cancer, diabetes and heart disease gets €22.5m boost

19.10.2005


Revolutionary new self-diagnostic devices to provide early warning of deadly and debilitating illnesses like cancer, diabetes and heart disease are the aim of a €22.5m Science Foundation Ireland research facility to be established at Dublin City University.



The Biomedical Diagnostics Institute will carry out cutting-edge research to develop this range of next-generation biomedical devices that will directly affect the quality of people’s lives worldwide over the next decades.

SFI will provide funding of €16.5m - the largest SFI funding ever granted in this kind of project - and six industrial partners will provide a further €6m through a scientific collaboration, positioning Ireland to make a major breakthrough in the €20 billion global diagnostics market.


The diagnostic devices and sensors will aim to detect minute concentrations of disease related molecules in biological samples like blood, saliva, and breath.

The programme led by DCU Professor Brian MacCraith will include top research scientists from Dublin City University, the Royal College of Surgeons, National University of Ireland, Galway and University College Cork.

They will use novel “markers” for human disease that can be detected by special consumer home-testing devices “well in advance of the onset of clinical symptoms,” says Professor MacCraith. “All the elements for a successful research environment have been put together. An exciting blend of scientists, teams, and industrial partners lends itself to a high probability of success.”

“Ultimately, the combined scientific challenge lies primarily in creating reliable, miniaturised systems in which the presence of very low concentrations of disease–related molecules in a sample of blood, urine, sweat, saliva and breath, can be detected with exquisite sensitivity, ” he added.

Launching the new research centre, the Minister for Enterprise and Employment Micheal Martin said: “These devices will detect life–threatening events long before a critical stage is reached. They will allow chronic diseases to be controlled more effectively, thereby reducing hospital stays and saving lives. In many cases, the devices will be linked via advanced communications technologies to monitoring services which will provide speedy expert assessment.”

The Medical and Device and Diagnostics sector represents a vibrant growth area within the Irish economy already, with over 40 companies in the field, including 13 of the top 25 medical device and diagnostics companies in the world. The sector now employs 22,000 and has been highlighted as of the areas in which Ireland can grow significantly.

At the launch, Dr William C Harris, Director General of SFI said this initiative would have far- reaching implications for the Irish economy. “The medical device and diagnostics sector represents a vibrant growth area – one in which Ireland can develop a position of competitive strength and critical mass.”

More than 50 scientists will be involved in the programme, the majority based at DCU with an additional 10 from the industrial partners.

There are five core scientific programmes led by three DCU Professors, Brian MacCraith, Robert Forster, and Richard O Kennedy, Professor Dermot Kenny of RCSI, and Professor Luke Lee from UC Berkley who will carry out an SFI funded research Professorship at DCU over the next five years.

The research will focus on the use of high sensitivity biochips for cancer detection and cardiac “wellness” as well as novel (blood) coagulation monitoring systems. This critical research programme has six industrial partners, Becton Dickinson and Company, Hospira Inc, Inverness Medical Innovations Inc, Analog Devices Incorporated, Amic AB and Enfer Technology Limited.

In 2004 Professor MacCraith’s research group won €5.6m from SFI to establish the initial team and carry out development work. Today’s announcement is for €16.5m from SFI initially, with the potential of further substantial additional SFI funding.

During the initial phase Professor MacCraith’s team has already made substantial progress giving Ireland a recognised leading role in sensor research. A new set of Intellectual Property principles has been developed to cover the commercialisation of discoveries. The new approach is based on an “inventor owns” model, with arrangements for shared discoveries, and a model which incentivises all parties.

Professor MacCraith says the IP principles fully protect DCU and partner interests as well the interests of Irish taxpayers who are ultimately providing most funding for the new centre.

Change in the way clinical services are delivered and in laboratory services as well as better-informed patients have resulted in a move to patient-centred care. These factors and pressure on costs have brought about a greater emphasis on primary care and reduced focus on hospitals to deliver clinical care.

In the longer term, the proposed research programme will lead to miniaturised devices that can be inserted inside the body for long periods to provide important information about the patient’s well-being using advanced e-health communications technology.

Another emerging area is the field of personalised medicine with tailored medical therapies devised after specific diagnosis of the genetic variation of the patient. The centre programme also includes key educational and outreach developments from primary to third level with health starter programmes for children, second level teacher and student internships, special undergraduate courses and a new postgraduate MSc in diagnostics.

Shane Kenny | alfa
Further information:
http://www.dcu.ie

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

nachricht What does congenital Zika syndrome look like?
24.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Argon is not the 'dope' for metallic hydrogen

24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>