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Horizon Europe grant for research into personalised treatment for high blood pressure

Professor Thomas Hankemeier and his international research team HYPERMARKER have received a 10m-euro grant from Horizon Europe and UK Research and Innovation. The team is developing a tool that will help clinicians choose the best treatment for patients with high blood pressure.

A woman measuring her blood pressure

High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is a serious medical condition that leads to cardiovascular disease and is a major cause of death worldwide. Although many treatments are available, it is difficult in most countries to keep blood pressure under control. This can result in heart attacks, strokes, kidney diseases and dementia.

Personalised treatment

The HYPERMARKER research team, which comprises 12 partners, is developing a clinical decision support tool that will make it easier for clinicians to personalise the treatment for patients with high blood pressure. The team is using AI, deep learning methods and patient cohort data from 11 European countries. ‘We are developing prediction algorithms that can help clinicians choose the right high blood pressure treatment for individual patients’, project leader Diederick Grobbee from Utrecht University explains. ‘By measuring and analysing small molecules in the blood that communicate with the body’s systems, you can predict the response to medication.’

Potential to change the treatment of many diseases

With his Leiden team, Thomas Hankemeier, Professor of Analytical Biosciences at Leiden University and co-project leader of the HYPERMARKER team, will analyse 4,000 plasma samples from patients with high blood pressure to further improve the prediction algorithms. He is convinced that the team’s ‘pharmacometabolomics’ approach, which involves predicting a treatment’s effect by analysing metabolites such as amino acids, will be the blueprint for the clinical lab of the future. ‘This approach will help personalise treatments not only for high blood pressure but also for other diseases because you look at the body’s full physiological state.’

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