£14m Cash Boost for Adverse Drug Reaction Research

drug reactions
Blanca Rodriguez

Oxford Computer Science is one of the partners of the TransQST project on adverse drug reaction research funded with £14 million by the European Innovative Medicines Initiative and with the participation of Prof Blanca Rodriguez and her team.

The new research project has been launched which aims to improve the understanding of adverse drug reactions and the approach of systems modelling approaches to drug safety.

Adverse drug reactions (ADRs) are the unwanted side effects of medication. They can contribute significantly to patient morbidity, mortality and hospitalisation costs.

Funded by the Innovative Medicines Initiative 2 Joint Undertaking (IMI 2 Joint Undertaking) the five-year project, called Translational Quantitative Systems Toxicology (TransQST), aims to develop novel computational approaches using the best available data from the public and private domains to address the problems of drug safety.

TransQT is a partnership between ten academic institutions, three Small and Medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and eight pharmaceutical companies, with a total budget of £14m. The project will be coordinated by the University of Liverpool, and the pharmaceutical company AbbVie is the Project Leader.

One of the main focuses of the project are “off-target reactions” which cannot be predicted from the known pharmacological properties of the drug. The main organs of concern for such reactions are the liver, the kidney and the cardiovascular and gastrointestinal systems.

Professor Kevin Park, co-ordinator, said: “The fear of ADRs is a major impediment to the development of new, safe and effective therapies.

“This project will enable us to leverage the best available data and expertise from both public and private domains to generate and validate novel computational models that will help to address the problems of safe drug development.

“Our ultimate aim is to maximise the benefits of medicines and minimise the harm.”

The focus of the TransQST project will be to provide innovative methodologies and software tools for systems toxicology modelling.