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15 April 2021
Asthma , Allergy

How does the European Commission plan to advance research in personalised medicine in the coming years? And how do allergy and asthma, two of the most common chronic diseases, fit into these plans? Vice-Chair of the EP Interest Group on Allergy & Asthma, MEP Juozas Olekas (S&D – Lithuania) to the Commission back in January tabled these concerns in a Written Question to the European Commission Directorate General for Research.

The Commission responded that investment in personalised medicine will be high on the agenda for the next years, with potential benefits for diseases like allergy and asthma. For example, Horizon Europe’s Health Cluster, a financial instrument for research with a budget of €95.5bn until 2027, will be able to support projects with no disease-specific limitations. In practice, this means Horizon Europe will be accessible for all disease areas, including allergy and asthma.

In addition, the Commission will launch a European Partnership for Personalised Medicine in 2023. In collaboration with Member States, the partnership will aim to address priorities in research and innovation in personalised medicine, to build on the success of the ERA PerMed partnership which is coming to an end in 2022. It will continue its work as key instrument funding research in this area, in the context of the International Consortium for Personalised Medicine (ICPerMed).

Finally, the Commission noted the great variance of individual responses to COVID-19 as a key incentive to explore the co-morbidities linked to infectious diseases, including allergy and asthma.

The EFA patient community sees personalised medicine as one of the most important healthcare trends of our days. It offers a key opportunity to further extend our knowledge into the causes of allergy and airways diseases, while moving towards more targeted treatments and care, which we hope to eventually lead to a better quality of life.

You can access the Written Question and the Commission’s answer here.

To know more about the work of the Interest Group on Allergy and Asthma, visit the website.