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EU prioritises allergic diseases in the Seventh Framework Programme for Research

GA²LEN welcomes the vote of the European Parliament on the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) on 30 November that acknowledges allergic diseases as major chronic diseases to be addressed in European research during the coming 7 years (2007 - 2013).

The European Parliament adopted the report of Prof. Jerzy Buzek that recognises “respiratory diseases including those induced by allergies” as health priorities to be addressed by translational research. This will allow respiratory allergic diseases (including asthma) to be covered by the research programme under the health theme.

In the first drafts, only food allergies (8% of all allergies) were covered. Allergic diseases will now be tackled under both the health and food themes of the research programme which should allow scientists to progress towards the overall understanding that is needed to help control this epidemic through effective prevention and treatment.

“Allergic diseases” in all their different aspects – from hay fever to fatal attacks of asthma or reactions to peanuts – are taking lives daily and creating huge financial costs. According to the World Health Organization, asthma kills someone in Europe every hour. One child in three is allergic today and by 2015, half of the European population may be suffering from one or more allergic condition.

The European Union’s next research programme known as the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) begins on 1st January 2007 and will run for seven years until 2013 with a total budget of €54.6 billion.

Noélie Auvergne | alfa
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