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Posted: September 30, 2008
150 specialists attended the annual meeting of The European Technology Platform on Nanomedicine
(Nanowerk News) The annual meeting of the working groups of the European Technology Platform on Nanomedicine (ETPN) took place in the headquarters of Pharmamar, a biotechnology company of the Spanish Zeltia Group. The meeting has been organized by Zeltia Group, together with its companies Noscira and PharmaMar and the Spanish Nanomedicine Platform (NANOMED).
The European Technology Platform on Nanomedicine (ETPN) addresses ambitious, responsible research, development and innovation in Nanotechnology for Health to strengthen the competitive scientific and industrial position of Europe in the area of Nanomedicine and to improve the quality of life and health care of its citizens.
150 experts in the field of diagnostics, regenerative medicine and drug delivery systems, along with experts in other fields, such as particle physics and nanoingeneering, have met to discuss challenges ahead.
The main conclusion of this meeting, in words of Joan-Albert Vericat, Director of Preclinical Development of Noscira and a member of the Executive Committee of ETPN, has been the decision of establishing a calendar of priorities to be solved and financed in the short, medium and long term in order to facilitate the development of innovative medicines based in the use of new technologies. An early version of this calendar should be available for the European Commission for future calls for funding of research projects within the current and future Framework Programs.
Heico Frima, of the Nanosciences and Nanotechnologies Unit of the European Commission Directorate-General for Research; Josep Samitier, rector of the University of Barcelona and president of NANOMED; Paul Smith, president of ETPN, Jose Maria Fernandez Sousa, president of the Zeltia Group and the Spanish Association of Biotechnology Companies (ASEBIO), and Belén Sopesén, managing director of Noscira, have participated in the inaugural session.
"It is of common agreement that biotechnology has been instrumental in recent advances in the fight against diseases" said Jose Maria Fernandez Sousa during his speech, in which he welcomed the attendees and referred to the commitment with innovation and health of the companies integrating ASEBIO.
"We need new ways of doing things in the twenty-first century, we need of the interaction of different disciplines and technologies to find new solutions," said Fernandez Sousa. "The European Technology Platform on Nanomedicine has another major stronghold, the participation of scientists with expertise in different areas: basic, applied, clinical and industrial research of the different disciplines". He added: "It is the way to achieve the competitiveness we need in Europe."
In his speech, Heico Frima, of the European Commission, stressed that one of the main commitments of the platform should be promoting industrial development in Europe and facilitating the competitiveness of groups and companies working in this field.
During the meeting, further progress made in three major areas of specialization in which ETPN activity is focused have been shared: diagnosis, regenerative medicine and drug delivery systems. During the meeting, several advances in the diagnosis of cancer and neurodegenerative diseases have been presented, together with valuable results that may be the origin of new treatments and innovative ways of diagnosis in the near future.
Sol Ruiz, a member of the Spanish Agency of Medicines and Health Products (AEMPS) and a member of the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) of the European Medicines Agency (EMEA), urged members of the Platform, especially members of non-industrial SMEs, to establish relationships with the EMEA and the National Authorities to ensure that the results and products derived from the research projects will be available for clinical use as soon as possible.
Members of the ETP are private companies, hospitals, research organizations, and concerned organizations that operate in the area of Nanomedicine.