OActive: Advanced personalised, multi-scale computer models preventing OsteoArthritis

Project ID: 777159

Funded under: SC1-PM-17-2017 – Personalised computer models and in-silico systems for well-being

OActive is a new Research and Innovation action (RIA) project funded by the EU’s Framework Programme “ Horizon 2020″. It launched on 1st of November 2017, OActive has built a strong case following Osteoarthritis (OA) -related challenges, to design a project covering all aspects of technical, medical and user requirements. To do that a total of thirteen (13) EU-based partners have brought together from seven (8) Member states. The consortium comprises of (i) well known research organisations (LJMU, CERTH, UPAT and RIMED) with wide expertise in OA modelling at various scales (full body, organ, neuromuscular and tissue level), (ii) technology providers in the field of biochemical and inflammatory biomarkers (LEITAT, NIC), (iii) organisations active in Social Sciences and Humanities and behaviour analysis (TIMELEX, KU LEUVEN) being responsible for investigation the effect of socioeconomical risk factors in OA and ethics, (iv) Computer science experts such as CERTH and CETRI , (v) research oriented SMEs with dissemination, exploitation skills (AXIA and CETRI) and (vi) big medical institutions (ANIMUS and HULAFE) acting as the end-users of the project.

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a degenerative disease of the articular cartilage and the most common form of arthritis that causes joint pain, mobility limitation and, thus, reduces independence and overall quality of life. Although the usual population associated with the condition is the elderly (65 years old ranges from 12- 30%), who are mostly inactive, athletes and younger individuals are also susceptible. Whilst the available data have implicated the role of the various modifiable or non-modifiable risk factors in the development and progression of OA, no study has conclusively explored the interaction and integration of other information sets in a patient-specific manner. The current OActive project intents to make a significant leap forward adopting a multi-scale holistic approach where patient-specific information from various levels, including cell, tissue, organ and whole body will be integrated and combined with information from other sources such as biochemical/inflammatory biomarkers, behaviour modeling and social/environmental risk factors to generate robust predictors for new personalised interventions for delaying onset and slowing down progression of OA. The OActive project focuses on the development of computer-based predictive models and simulation for understanding the onset and progression of a major disease like OA. Such patient-specific computer models may be used by clinicians to develop appropriate OA prevention interventions or treatments. Specifically, the project’s goals will be accomplished through:

(a) comprehensive and purposive approaches to data analysis that involves the application of methods and approaches drawn from different scientific areas and domains (for example biomechanics & computer science, mathematics, social and behavioural sciences);

(b) the explanatory capability of the suggested models;

(c) the applied techniques’ capability of efficient modelling and data processing for coping with problems of high-dimensionality.OActive