The first transnational call of ERA PerMed, JTC2018, was co-funded by the European Commission (EC) and in its framework, 25 projects were chosen to be funded with a total of approximately 25 million Euros. These projects involve 133 research groups from 18 different countries.
The overall aim of the call was to fund projects showing clinical feasibility of personalised medicine (PM) in various types of diseases ranging from complex/multifactorial diseases to monogenic diseases, including cancer, rare diseases, psychiatric disorders and more. Clinical feasibility was defined in this call as the demonstration of significant and clinically relevant improvement of current diagnostics and/or therapeutics, based on improved understanding of underlying molecular mechanisms.
This Final symposium, which has taken place in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, is attended by 67 on-site participants, including researchers from the JTC2018 consortia, the ERA PerMed EC policy officer, representatives from funding organisations and scientific experts, as well as ~30 online participants. The symposium aims to provide the project coordinators with the opportunity to present and discuss their work and results, and promote interactions between the various stakeholders attending the meeting.
Furthermore, young researchers from the funded consortia were invited to communicate their research through a poster presentation and ten posters have been shown. ERA PerMed’s support and encouragement of young researchers is also demonstrated in the awards given to the winners of the best video competition and the best poster.
This event also serves as an opportunity to discuss the importance of patient and citizen involvement in PM research. A dedicated patient involvement panel was organised, presenting perspectives of the patients/citizens, the researchers and the funders.
Finally, this event also serves as a great opportunity for networking and fostering new ideas and collaborations, as well as presenting to the researchers the potential funding opportunities in PM field that can be fostered by the future European Partnership on Personalised Medicine (EP PerMed), which it is currently under preparation.
The Symposium provided an excellent opportunity to learn about the outstanding results and outcomes of the JTC2018 EC co-funded projects, who managed to make admirable progress despite being greatly impacted in their work by the Covid-19 pandemic.