CoMMiTMenT Consortium holds 5th Progress Meeting

Coordinator Lars Kaestner was pleased to welcome the CoMMiTMenT consortium to the 5th Progress Meeting, which took place on 6th October 2016. This time, the CoMMiTMenT consortium decided to hold their progress meeting via web conference, the platform for which was kindly provided by software partner Arivis AG. This rather unusual way of arranging a progress meeting was chosen in order to allow the consortium to save travel costs so that they can schedule an additional in person meeting adjacent to next year’s European Red Cell Society Meeting, taking place in Heidelberg, Germany, from 27th April to 1st May 2017. This conference is one of the most important conferences in respect to Red Blood Cell Research. It will be organized by CoMMiTMenT Coordinator Lars Kaestner, and most of the consortium members will participate in the meeting by presenting their achievements in CoMMiTMenT.

The meeting was kindly joined during the morning by the project’s responsible EC Project Officer. Also, the Consortium was delighted to welcome Advisory Board Member Stéphane Egée from Station Biologique in Roscoff, who actively contributed to the discussions arising from the work progress presentations.

As the web conference was a one day meeting only, it was tightly packed and had a stringent time schedule for presentation and discussion of the work progress achieved in fine-tuning the µCOSMOS devices for identification, isolation and examination of malfunctioning red blood cells, the collection of data as well as subsequent possible personal treatment approaches.

The work progress presentations showed the remarkable step forward in establishing the final specifications for the µCOSMOS devices. The academic partners’ input gathered from testing the µCOSMOS devices was continuously fed back to the SME partners, who in turn, based on this feedback, adjusted the µCOSMOS devices to better meet the research requirements, an improvement process that will be ongoing during the remaining lifetime of the project. Furthermore, the academic partners presented their significant progress in identifying and examining malfunctioning red blood cells from blood samples of patients suffering from known and novel rare anaemias. They have already succeeded in identifying some hitherto unknown cases of rare anaemia and are confident, with the aid of the µCOMOS devices, to discover not only further new rare anaemias, but also to identify the causes of the malfunctions, thus paving the way to improve life of affected patients by developing appropriate personal treatments.

Coordinator Lars Kaestner was very pleased by the results obtained and the progress made during the first 36 months of the project. Advisory Board Member Stéphane Egée, whose valuable suggestions during the discussions were very well received by the partners, stressed that he was indeed impressed by the tremendous progress made since the last meeting he attended 18 months ago.

The next CoMMiTMenT Progress Meeting will take place on 1st May 2017 at the ISG Hotel in Heidelberg, Germany, adjacent to the 21st European Red Cell Society Meeting.

CoMMiTMenT is a five-year Collaborative Project funded by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme of the European Union. The project aims to develop combined imaging technologies based on optofluidic microscopy and scanning ion conductance microscopy. An integrated, completely simultaneous device named µCOSMOS will be used as a proof-of-principle for therapeutic interventions in rare anaemias.

Eurice is the management partner of CoMMiTMenT and contributes to the successful implementation of the project goals.

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Tags: FP7