A new public-private initiative brings academic and industry researchers from 15 European countries together in a large-scale effort to understand differences and commonalities in seven immune-mediated and inflammatory diseases, including multiple sclerosis, so to better predict a patient’s likely response to treatment and likely disease progression.
The project, called 3TR (for Taxonomy, Treatment, Targets, and Remission), will run for seven years. It gives 69 scientific and medical “partners” across a range of disciplines access to clinical data and samples, covering more than 50,000 patients who took part in 50 clinical trials, to identify disease biomarkers of importance to patient management and individualized treatment.
Their goal is to bring a more scientific basis to treatment selection, rather than the “trial and error” approach of clinical trials, one expert said in a press release.
Scientists will also be looking into defining molecular pathways and mechanisms across these seven diseases, and how both might be linked to therapy response and non-response in patients.
In addition to MS, targeted diseases are systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease (including ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease), asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
With funding of €80 million (about $88.71 million) over seven years from the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), a joint European Union and European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations undertaking, the project kicked off at a late October meeting in Granada, Spain.
“This consortium is focused on addressing unmet treatment needs for many of the immunological and inflammatory conditions covered in this initiative,” Frank Nestle, MD, head of research in immunology and inflammation at Sanofi, said in the release. “3TR will provide the unique opportunity to investigate a considerable amount of clinical and molecular data across important inflammatory disease categories including treatment responders and non-responders.”
Sanofi is the scientific leader of the 3TR project, which the company expects “will bring valuable insights to help in the discovery of more effective treatment options for people living with chronic inflammatory conditions,” Nestle said.
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