Irene Norstedt talks about rare disease’s grant situation in Europe and IRDiRC

Watch online the Deput Head of Unit Personalised Medicine at European Commission

May 22, 2014

European Commission is determined to support research and clinical trials focused on rare diseases. Irene Norstedt, Deput Head of Unit Personalised Medicine at European Commission, offered recently a talk to summarize the Grant frameworks for rare diseases available in Europe. You can view on Youtube the presentation that took place during the Worldwide Orphan Medicinal Designation Workshop held in London last March.

Rare diseases are a big challenge. The small patient populations, added to the scarce and scattered research resources and expertise around the world, make it hard to fight them. According to Irene Norstedt’s data, we only have therapies for around 2% of rare diseases today. When it comes to research, 150 new rare diseases-related genes are being identified per year, a rate that makes necessary at least 10 more years to identify the estimated 1.500 genes pending to be found.

IRDiRC project, an European initiative devoted to deliver 200 new therapies for rare diseases and means to diagnose most rare diseases by the year 2020, centered an important part of the talk. According to the speaker, omics and clinical trials are topics relevant to rare diseases research. The talk ends with a brief revision of the funding opportunities promoted by the European Commission.

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