Diabetes is increasing rapidly from 415 million patients in 2015 to 642 million patients by 2040. As a result, it will become the leading disease worldwide, affecting 1 out of 10 persons globally and 3 out of 4 in low and middle income countries.
The World Health Organisation marked World Health Day 2016 as calling for action on diabetes. Despite successful treatment of the inadequate glucose handling, diabetic patients show long-term effects of the disease such as a progressive loss of multiple organ function, in particular in the cardiovascular and renal systems. About half of the diabetic patients are at risk for renal complications associated with a markedly increased disease burden and death rate, the latter even surpassing the death rate in all treated cancer patients. PROMINENT trains and educates in 4 main pillars (see figure and Research Projects). PROMINENT will contribute to the implementation and optimalisatoin of personalised medicine in all of these societal domains.
The major reason for the lack of treatment efficacy is the large variation in individual response to the treatment. Consequently, we are left with a huge unmet need in the treatment of this chronic disease. A huge step forward in chronic diabetes disease management is personalised medicine. The EC has recognized the importance of personalised medicine and has started initiatives in this regard in 2016. The COFUND PROMINENT programme of the Research Institute for Drug Exploration (GUIDE) brings these fields together and introduces personalised medicine for chronic diabetes disease management.
PROMINENT is focussed at setting up a dedicated doctoral training programme for 16 Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) at the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) and the University of Groningen (RUG). PROMINENT aims to select the best students to become excellently trained researchers, who can perform high quality research, and who subsequently have a major impact on scientific breakthroughs that foster the European society and economy in this field.