Precision medicine – also known as stratified medicine or personalised medicine – is one of the priority themes for Innovate UK’s (IUK) health and life science sector. IUK has now launched a competition to fund innovation projects that support the development of precision medicine technologies, defined as better targeting of treatments for patients by combining clinical knowledge with advances in diagnostic techniques and data analysis.
It is estimated that only 30% to 70% of patients respond positively to any one particular drug, and it is important that companies producing precision medicine technologies avoid focusing too much on technology and not enough on end user needs. This issue can be exacerbated by companies not having the time or resources to explore these issues at an early stage.
This competition seeks solutions to these challenges. Applications can be for feasibility studies to help companies assess the research, development and adoption issues their concept will need to address and the likelihood of success, or research and development to help companies develop and trial precision medicine technology.
Feasibility projects can be up to £100,000 and last up to 12 months. They may be either:
- Single-company SME projects; or
- Collaborative projects led by an SME.
Research and experimental development projects can range from £1 million to £2 million and last up to 24 months. They may be:
- Led by a business or research and technology organisation.
- Collaborative projects.
Collaborations must include at least one other grant-claiming partner, and projects must show an improvement in the competitiveness and productivity of at least one UK SME involved in the project, although the project does not need to be led by an SME.
Applicants must explain clearly how their proposed technology will advance precision medicine. Applications that can provide evidence of engagement with regional precision medicine centres of expertise across the UK are particularly encouraged.
The lead applicant must first register online before completing and uploading the online application. There is a briefing event on 20 September for this call.
The deadline for applications is 25 October 2017.