Funding opportunity: Asthma UK/Innovate UK diagnostics

Category: Calls

1 February 2018

Asthma UK and Innovate UK have collaborated to create a £1.25 million funding scheme for development of new technology in asthma diagnosis.

Technology should be at a fairly early stage of development: funding is capped at £50,000-£250,000 per project, to be spent over up to three years.

The funders have recognised that asthma is often diagnosed in conventional, older ways, and can often be misdiagnosed leading to inappropriate treatment. The aim of this call is to develop a 'low-cost, non-invasive diagnostic tool that can accurately diagnose asthma and precise types of asthma'. Eventually, the funders hope to save the huge amounts of public money lost through funding inappropriate treatments and misdiagnoses, but they emphasise that: 'Preference will be held for proposals that will achieve impact for people with asthma in the short to medium term.'

In order to help refine your ideas, the funders have created a list of suggested topic areas, but acknowledge that this is non-exhaustive. Projects could address ideas that:

  • develop quick, accurate, reliable, low cost, non-invasive tools capable of differentiating between different and changing asthma phenotypes in order to target treatment effectively
  • develop simple, reliable, low cost, non-invasive ways of differentiating between different asthma phenotypes in the under 5s in order to predict those at risk of persistent asthma and help direct therapy accordingly
  • prevent over-, under-and mis-diagnosis of asthma in all ages through the development of composite tools (e.g. comprising biomarkers, lung function tests, ‘omics technologies) that are scalable in primary care
  • take advantage of emerging technological innovations to ‘mechanise’ diagnostic processes in primary care and provide decision support for non-experts.

In order to succeed in this call, you will need partners and input from both academia and industrial sectors, as well as insights from health professionals. You will be required to demonstrate a real need for the technologies you propose, and the feasibility of using them to benefit patients.

More information on the opportunity is available on the call page.

The deadline for applications is 1pm on 27 March 2018.

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