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BIOTEK2021-Bioteknologi for verdiskaping

KOMM: MicroRNAs for risk assessment and treatment of venous thromboembolism

Alternative title: MicroRNA for risikovurdering og behandling av venøs blodpropp

Awarded: NOK 8.0 mill.

Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a common disease, which affects around 1.1 million individuals in Europe each year, with 540,000 VTE-related deaths. The individual suffering and economic burden caused by VTE are tremendous, and the disease has become a major challenge to public health and health care systems. Today, anticoagulants are the only drugs available for effective prevention and treatment of VTE. However, severe bleeding is a feared side-effect (affects 3-4% of patients per year), and anticoagulants should therefore only be given to those at particularly high VTE risk in order to achieve a positive benefit-to-harm ratio for treatment. In the Thrombosis Research Center (TREC), we have recently discovered two microRNAs (miRs) that are associated with risk of VTE. Targeted intervention on these miRs has the potential to effectively prevent VTE without serious side-effects. In the proposed project, we will (i) perform a study to confirm the association between these miRs and VTE in an external population, (ii) perform randomized controlled intervention studies in mice to test the efficacy and safety of the miRs on the risks of VTE and bleeding, and (iii) test the functional properties of these miRs to reveal their mechanistic role in venous thrombus formation (may reveal new drug targets). The results of the project may introduce a paradigm shift for targeted preventive treatment of VTE. Thus, these miRs will have an enormous potential for commercialization as therapeutic agents for a common and severe disease.

Funding scheme:

BIOTEK2021-Bioteknologi for verdiskaping