Diamyd Medical and Partners are Awarded SEK 40 Million in VINNOVA Funding for the Prevention of Autoimmune Diseases
The Swedish governmental innovation agency VINNOVA provides SEK 40 million in financing for an innovation milieu in sustainable precision health that will be led by Diamyd Medical. The project aims to develop and evaluate new algorithms based on artificial intelligence (AI) for preventive precision medical treatments for type 1 diabetes and other autoimmune diseases. The innovation milieu also includes Mainly AI AB, Lund University, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, the National Diabetes Register and the Leading Healthcare Foundation. Diamyd Medical’s part of the five year grant amounts to approximately SEK 18 million.
“This is an incredibly exciting and potentially groundbreaking project in type 1 diabetes and autoimmune diseases,” says Ulf Hannelius, CEO of Diamyd Medical. “We know that the autoimmune attack on the body’s insulin-producing cells begins years before the patient is diagnosed with type 1 diabetes – and we know that we have a great opportunity to change the course of the disease with, among other things, the diabetes vaccine Diamyd. If we can develop new algorithms that can more accurately predict who is at risk and when in time diagnosis is expected to occur, we have the opportunity to make individualized preventive healthcare a reality.”
The innovation milieu ASSET (AI for Sustainable Prevention of Autoimmunity in the Society) will develop and evaluate new algorithms based on AI to be able to assess the individual risk of developing type 1 diabetes. Data to be used come from the cohort study TEDDY (The Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young), from Diamyd Medical’s clinical trials with Diamyd® and from the National Diabetes Registry. Other autoimmune diseases that are strongly linked to type 1 diabetes, specifically celiac disease (gluten intolerance) and autoimmune thyroiditis (inflammatory disease of the thyroid gland), will also be investigated. The prediction algorithm will be evaluated in two smaller prevention trials where individuals at high risk for type 1 diabetes will be treated preventively with the diabetes vaccine Diamyd®. In parallel, ASSET will study the health care system implications/effects in terms of organizational, economic, and legal prerequisites and consequences of applying the suggested precision health approach in the Swedish health care system. The goal is to proactively address obstacles that may slow down implementation and spread of the innovations in the healthcare system.
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