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From Target-Breast to Target-Melanoma Prof. William M. Gallagher Vice-Principal of Research and Innovation, UCD College of Life Sciences Associate Professor.

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Presentation on theme: "From Target-Breast to Target-Melanoma Prof. William M. Gallagher Vice-Principal of Research and Innovation, UCD College of Life Sciences Associate Professor."— Presentation transcript:

1 From Target-Breast to Target-Melanoma Prof. William M. Gallagher Vice-Principal of Research and Innovation, UCD College of Life Sciences Associate Professor of Cancer Biology, UCD School of Biomolecular & Biomedical Science Conway Fellow, UCD Conway Institute Co-Founder/Chief Scientific Officer, OncoMark Ltd. Marie Curie IAPP/ITN 29 th September 2010, Royal Irish Academy

2 Intravital Microscopy HT1080 fibrosarcoma tumour cells Courtesy of Prof. Robert Hoffman (Anti-Cancer Inc.) Tumour Growth and Spread

3 Biomarkers in Cancer Management

4 4 Target-Breast: Marie Curie Industry-Academia Partnership ToK Programme (FP6)  3 academic centres  UCD  Lund U.  NKI  2 industrial partners  SlidePath  Agendia  Focus on converting omic datasets into clinically relevant assays

5 Lessons Learned and Comments - I Programme was of considerable value to consolidate and strengthen pre-existing/new industry-academic interactions Provided great opportunities for advanced training of researchers in different sectors Administration of programme complex, with reporting process difficult in parts (e.g. ambiguous nature of online versus hard copy submissions, EC timeline for sign-off of Annual report – delay of funds) Turnover of contact staff at EC (now REA) appears to be quite high; therefore, difficult to maintain relationship Difficult to recruit good candidates for exchanges: ‘best laid plans!’ Support for proposal preparation was key to drive process (Enterprise Ireland), as well as feedback/advice from Marie Curie/FP contact points (Dagmar Meyer/Caitriona Creely) Useful to complement with other large-scale national (HRB Programme Grant, SFI Cluster Grant) and international (EU IAPP and Collaborative grant) initiatives Need to identify key driver in the process for next initiative

6 Marie Curie Industry Academia Partnership and Pathways Programme (FP7) Acronym: Target-Melanoma Title: Molecular Dissection of Melanoma Progression: An Integrated Pan-European Approach Original Partners: 9 partners (4 SMEs, 5 Academics) Current Partners: 7 partners (2 SMEs, 5 academics) Funding: 1.73 M euro One of the fastest rising cancers Poor prognosis for advanced disease Current therapeutic strategies modestly successful Insight into molecular basis of this disease is lacking Why TARGET-MELANOMA?

7 Partners 1. UCD, Ireland (Coordinator) 2. University of Maastricht, Netherlands 3. University of Leuven, Belgium 4. IDIBELL, Barcelona, Spain: 5. University of Upsalla, HPR, Sweden 6. OncoMethylome, Belguim 7. Slidepath, DCU, Ireland 8. Cellix, St.James, Ireland 9. OncoMark, UCD, Ireland Academic SME

8 LEUVEN

9

10 ER1(18-36) Methylation profiling of Melanoms

11 Time-Line Dec 07 Initial contact with Partners Jan 08 First meeting Feb/Mar 08 1 st draft & feedback Mar 25th 08 Submit full application July 08 Results: On reserve list 2 nd Life Sci 3 rd overall Nov 08 1 st Life Sci 2 rd overall 19 Dec 08 Invitation to negotiate Jan/Feb 09 Annex1, Gantt Chart & GFPs Feb 09 Negotiate with Commission June 09 Grant Agreement Signed Aug 09 Start of Project Oct 09 Kick Off meeting....

12 Lessons Learned and Comments - II Driver was indeed key; in this case, Dr. Mairin Rafferty (formerly Senior Research Fellow in UCD; now Chief Operations Officer in OncoMark) Need complete buy-in from prospective partners – interactions need to make sense Template information forms can facilitate retrieval of necessary data from prospective partners Preferable to keep number of partners to a modest level for this programme; can be complex to arrange secondments Useful mechanism to progress spin-out activities (e.g. OncoMark) and create new product opportunities Face-to-face meetings, preferably as a group, are highly recommended – people need time to bed down concepts/format of grant

13 Products Services R+D Products IHC-MARK RATHER Angiotox Target Melanoma TMA Construction Slide Scanning Automated Analysis Pre-clinical Studies FP7 Consultancy Mr. Stephen Penney Dr. Mairin Rafferty Current Activities Dr. Dara FitzGerald


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