New knowledge and innovation will make it possible to provide the patient with more precisely targeted diagnostics and treatment. Innovation Fund Denmark, the Research Council of Norway, the Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems (Vinnova), the Icelandic Centre for Research (RANNÍS), Innovaatiorahoituskeskus Business Finland, and NordForsk are providing more than NOK 165 million in funding for seven Nordic projects that will target wider implementation of personalised medicine in the Nordic health care sector.
The funded projects will enable Nordic players in personalised medicine to establish links across borders, thereby promoting personalised medicine and increasing Nordic visibility in the field. In addition, this large-scale Nordic initiative will further strengthen Nordic collaboration across institutions, hospitals, health organisations and companies.
"We are facing a shift in the development and distribution of health services. Personalised medicine is rapidly developing internationally and the potential for innovation and business development is huge. With these projects, the Nordic countries have the opportunity to take a leading role internationally", says Norway's Minister of Trade and Industry, Torbjørn Røe Isaksen.
"This is a great day for personalised medicine as a research and innovation field in the Nordic region. The funded projects will promote the development of innovations related to the implementation of personalised medicine for Nordic citizens and health care systems,"says Director of NordForsk, Arne Flåøyen.
"There are many issues that pose obstacles to such implementation and overcoming these obstacles will require close cooperation between the research community, industry and the health care sector – as well as cross-border, cross-disciplinary innovation networks. Above all, this unique Nordic collaboration aims to make a big difference in the ability of patients to get more accurate diagnoses and ideal treatment”, says Flåøyen.
The funded projects that receive a total of NOK 165 million:
Project leader: Henrik Grönberg, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
The overall idea of NorDCaP is to accelerate the cross-Nordic implementation of a new personalised medicine approach that will ensure better and more accurate prostate cancer diagnostics. This will improve quality of life and patient survival, as well as ensure higher quality in patient care and a more cost-effective and sustainable health care system.
Project leader: Juha Töyräs, University of Eastern Finland
This research project introduces novel diagnostic approaches for sleep apnea that utilise minimally sleep-disturbing wearable sensors and state-of-the art artificial intelligence and machine learning solutions. The outcomes of this project can lead to a paradigm shift in the diagnostics and treatment of sleep apnea and have significant positive impact on Nordic health and society.
Project leader: Henning Bundgaard, Copenhagen University Hospital, Rigshospitalet, Denmark
The objective is to develop and clinically implement personalised medicine with the dual purpose of avoiding futile overtreatment as well as undertreatment in ischemic heart disease (IHD). The project hopes to reduce overall use of medication, reduce hospital visits and thus decrease health care expenses.
Project leader: Anna Norrby-Teglund, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
The PERAID project proposes to implement personalised medicine in severe infectious diseases, specifically focusing on the life-threatening necrotising soft tissue infections (NSTI) as well as the large heterogeneous group of sepsis patients.
Project leader: Johan Askling, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
The goal of the NORA project is to develop a personalised medicine approach for the management of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), both by the development of new prediction tools and by digital tools to bring these now insights to patients and to health care.
Project leader: Eline Aas, Norwegian Medicines Agency, Norway
PRECISE will contribute to improved health care decisions that facilitate the implementation of cost-effective interventions for personalised medicine in clinical practice. PRECISE will generate new health economic evidence based on real case studies that address important health care decisions.
Project leader: Jonas Halfvarson, Örebro University, Sweden
The overall aim is to improve the prognosis and quality of life of patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) by introducing a novel personalised medicine algorithm that is based on recently generated -omics data. NORDTREAT will reduce societal costs and improve quality of care for patients with IBD.