AiDA – a new method for the diagnosis of COPD
The lung disease COPD, according to WHO, is the fourth most common cause of death worldwide, and its prevalence is increasing. Of the more than 200 million people suffering from COPD, three million die annually. The diagnostic method that is most specific for emphysema is computed tomography (CT scan) – a costly measure that requires a separate hospital visit and X-ray radiation of the patient. The new prototype instrument for diagnosing pulmonary emphysema is called Airspace Dimensional Assessment (AiDA). Each AiDA measurement takes about 1 minute and the cost is a fraction of a CT scan. Operation of the instrument is so simple that it only takes one hour of training to learn how to use it. Moreover, it has been found that the AiDA measurements provide exceptionally high precision and repeatability.
Technical development/drafting of depot-implant to prevent relapse of breast cancer
Breast cancer is according to WHO the second most common cancer in the world. Treatment is usually surgery in combination with chemotherapy and / or radiation and for the majority of patients followed by a 5-year anti-oestrogen therapy to prevent relapse. The project intends to develop a unique p-rod-like implant with the well-known substance (aromatase inhibitors – anti-oestrogen drugs) used to treat and reduce the risk of recurrence of breast cancer. This will be done with the help of unique new pharmaceutical technology, which provides a steady release of the drug for 6-12 months. No such drug is at present available on the market.
New sampling instrument for prostate biopsies
The project received a grant from the Sten K. Johnsson Foundation in 2015. Since then, the following has happened: 1) a needle prototype has been developed with JOIN in Lund. 2) A study of the needle at the Centre of Bacteriology at Lund University has shown that: a) the needle works b) it provides temperature-sensitive killing of bacteria c) it has a very good effect on E. coli, which is the bacterium that usually causes clinical infection. The needle works well in a laboratory environment. The goal is to reduce the number of infections associated with prostate biopsies. As a side effect of safer biopsies one can be more liberal with conducting biopsies and logically detect more prostate cancer than before. The technique should also reduce bleeding after the biopsy.
Improved personalised cancer treatment using single patient tissue
In order to achieve the vision of personalised cancer treatment, clinical pathology must develop better tools to be able to “predict in the tissue”, i.e., identify biological properties, known as biomarkers, in individual tumours, which are of significance to disease progression (prognosis) and the effect of different treatments (prediction). The concept means that, for every cancer patient, tissue samples are collected and organized from diagnostic biopsy, primary tumour and all metastases in a handy ‘single patient tissue chip “. The aim is to improve the accuracy of the biomarker analysis that needs to be made and therefore the choice of treatment.
Mathematical mapping of streptococcus in different environments
Several of the most deadly bacteria in the world alternate between causing symptomatic infections and acting as asymptomatic carriers, where they do not harm their host. One of these is the group A streptococci (GAS). GAS has a control system which switches off or on the virulence factors, that is, the molecules that cause the symptoms and do harm to the patient. The project aims to understand the behaviour of this control system focusing, especially, on the control molecule, Mga as it has a direct effect on several important virulence factors.
Innovative treatment of the autoimmune disease multiple sclerosis: Verification of a vaccine
BTB Pharma AB/ Thomas Bäckström
The goal of this project is to develop an initial verification of a new method for the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS), an autoimmune disease. About 900-1000 people are diagnosed with MS every year in Sweden. Current treatments are ineffective and often not specific for MS, and can lead to undesirable consequences, sometimes fatal. A vaccine that inhibits the development of MS, or even cures the disease at an early stage, would be revolutionary for Swedish and international drug development.