15 February 2019

Researchers from the University of Copenhagen Join Large EU Research Project on Liver Diseases

Liver Diseases

Together with 21 other universities, companies and organisations across Europe, the University of Copenhagen (UCPH) will be doing research into deadly liver diseases in order to find better treatment options. The project is supported by the EU Horizon 2020 programme with just over DKK 112 million.

The leaders of the 10 work packages. (Front row, left to right) Dr. Minneke Coenraad, Dr. Maria Papp, Prof. Jonel Trebicka, Dr. Itziar De Lecuona, Dr. Sabine Klein, Dr. Christophe Junot. (Back row, left to right) Prof. Matthias Mann, Prof. Aleksander Krag, Prof. Peer Bork, Associate Prof. Manimozhiyan Arumugam. Photo: MICROB-PREDICT.

A new, large EU research project – with participation by the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, UCPH – will conduct research into the microbiome and liver diseases such as cirrhosis of the liver which are the cause of more than one million deaths annually. EUR 15 million – equivalent to approximately DKK 112.5 million – have been allocated for the project called MICROB-PREDICT.

The goal is to develop better methods for diagnosing and treating decompensated cirrhosis and acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF). Manimozhiyan Arumugam, Associate Professor at the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Basic Metabolic Research, will be leading the work package, i.e. the part of the project which is called ‘Data management, integration and systems modelling’, from UCPH.

Together with his colleagues, Manimozhiyan Arumugam will integrate and analyse data from blood, urine and biopsies and from the microbiome, including bacteria, viruses and fungi. Among other things, they will investigate and model the role of the microbiome in patients receiving two different kinds of treatments.

‘We will use systems modelling to find biomarkers for decompensated cirrhosis and ACLF. The biomarkers that we find and validate will be passed on to other partners in the project who will then develop them into a so-called diagnostic kit. If the project succeeds in developing a kit for early diagnosis of the liver diseases, it will have a major impact within the healthcare system,' says Manimozhiyan Arumugam, who is also a member of the project's steering committee.

The duration of the research project will be just over six years. It is an extensive collaboration between 22 different European partners such as universities, hospitals, research organisations and companies.

The work package controlled by UCPH will be awarded just over EUR 1.2 million, corresponding to DKK 9.3 million, out of the total grant. There will be a total of 10 individual work packages. In addition to UCPH, there will be one more participant from Denmark, i.e. Odense University Hospital (OUH) which will lead another work package.

The project is supported by the EU Horizon 2020 programme. Click here for more information about MICROB-PREDICT.

Associate Professor Manimozhiyan Arumugam
Email: arumugam@sund.ku.dk
Telephone: +45 35337581

Communications Consultant Cecilie Krabbe
Email: cecilie.krabbe@sund.ku.dk
Telephone: +45 93565911