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TRANSCARD

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Translating disease to cardiovascular health

Coordinator: Jan Albert KUIVENHOVEN
Project Number: 603091
EC contribution: € 5,884,643.00
Project website: http://www.transcard-research.org/

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in Europe and the world. Drugs that lower cholesterol in blood are the most efficient drugs used to date but we are currently still facing a 50-70% residual risk of suffering from CVD. This clearly illustrates an urgent need for the identification, characterization and validation of novel therapeutically relevant targets. Over the last decade, numerous targets have emerged but not led to successful treatment of patients. In addition to missing opportunities of health improvement beyond statins, the 92% failure rate of novel drugs also puts a large burden on the EU economy.

While the causal relation between levels of lipids in plasma and CVD forms the basis of this proposal, the challenge taken up by TransCard is ‘Translating disease into Cardiovascular health’: It means that insight into the molecular origin of disturbed lipid metabolism in patients as well as the identification of lipoprotein phenotypes with causal relationships to atherosclerosis can provide immediate targets for pharmaceutical intervention leading to successful treatment of this disease.

TransCard will prioritize existing and emerging targets and embark on novel unbiased approaches to identify and prioritize novel key regulators of lipid and lipoprotein metabolism. Achieving this aim will be ensured by a multidisciplinary research consortium of two SMEs and four academic partners who use innovative biotechnological and bioinformatics tools and have direct access to unique biobanks and large-scale population cohorts.

This team will also help to translate the basic insight into biology into clinical use by subjecting promising targets from top level basic research to validation of their CVD association in large prospective and patient cohorts. Targets passing these tests will be studied in mice to shed further light on the feasibility of pharmaceutical intervention thereby providing lead targets for further development by other parties.

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