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Using patient data to enable personalized healthcare, ATHENA shows us how!

Personalized healthcare is characterized by tailoring treatments to each individual patient’s needs. Despite evident benefits, implementing such a system is not straightforward. The ATHENA project consortium has successfully devised a set of building blocks to address the challenges associated. Both technological and governance tools were developed that can now be used on a larger scale to catalyze the transition towards personalized medicine and care.
Belgium is one of the top countries in the world for in vitro fertilization (IVF). Despite the high cumulative success rates of these interventions, disproportionally little attention has been given to the health of both mother and child during and after pregnancy. With the HEART (High risk for pre-Eclampsia after Assisted Reproductive Technology) project, Belgian researchers strive to understand why some women have an increased risk for pre-eclampsia after IVF and whether biomarkers can be identified to estimate these risks early in pregnancy or even before conception. They aim to raise the standard from successful conception to improved child and maternal health.
While the life sciences environment is adjusting to be able to foster female talents in the workplace, there is still a long way to go to achieve truly egalitarian work conditions. From the ‘motherhood penalty’ to unconscious bias, women can still be made to feel unwelcome in their daily work life. This is what motivated Veroniek Vermeulen to launch Silatha, a company with the goal of creating an environment where everyone can thrive.
While a vast majority of women experience vaginal yeast infections, research has fallen short in providing an effective treatment approach. However, hope has emerged recently with the development of new model systems that allow exploration of the complex vaginal environment. Organ-on-chip models enable researchers to examine the interactions between human cells and microbes in a more accurate manner, offering the potential for the development of new therapies.
Innovative Smart Contact Lens Developer Awarded €2.5M in Funding for Groundbreaking Ocular Health Technology
The patient’s journey in a healthcare setting is influenced by factors beyond the mere medical aspects of the case. Local variations in care procedures among hospitals and caregivers enable benchmarking and adaptation of practices to optimize outcomes. For effective process modeling, it’s essential to collect data and extract insights. To optimize this process efficiently, collaborative efforts should explore alternative data sources and implement novel tools.
Barely any people stick to a three-meals-a-day plan. Snacking is part of our culture and can even contribute to a healthy diet when choosing the right snacks. But your appetite doesn’t always agree about what’s the “right” snack. Your hands automatically reach for those candy bars, instead of a handful of nuts. Therefore, we investigated whether two different nutritional labels – calorie labels and the Nutri-Score – can nudge you in the right direction.
Gluten-free dietary products contain more sugar and fats but fewer nutrients and are generally more expensive. A gluten-free diet can even lead to social isolation and stigmatization. Scientists are thus looking for a way that allows people with celiac gluten intolerance disease to enjoy the benefits of gluten in a safe manner.
In December 2023, Azalea Vision announced the first test of their smart contact lens on a real person. This demonstration showcased the first functional prototype of their smart lens, known as the ALMA lens, which was developed by the company to address ocular disorders characterized by the inability to effectively filter light.
In a significant milestone, Azalea Vision, pioneering start-up on a mission to revolutionize the treatment of ocular disorders, announces the successful demonstration of ALMA Lens, the first functional prototype of the Azalea smart contact lens’ platform.
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  • Regional News

Personalized healthcare is characterized by tailoring treatments to each individual patient’s needs. Despite evident benefits, implementing such a system is not straightforward. The ATHENA project consortium has successfully devised a set of building blocks to address the challenges associated. Both technological and governance tools were developed that can now be used on a larger scale to catalyze the transition towards personalized medicine and care.
Belgium is one of the top countries in the world for in vitro fertilization (IVF). Despite the high cumulative success rates of these interventions, disproportionally little attention has been given to the health of both mother and child during and after pregnancy. With the HEART (High risk for pre-Eclampsia after Assisted Reproductive Technology) project, Belgian researchers strive to understand why some women have an increased risk for pre-eclampsia after IVF and whether biomarkers can be identified to estimate these risks early in pregnancy or even before conception. They aim to raise the standard from successful conception to improved child and maternal health.
While the life sciences environment is adjusting to be able to foster female talents in the workplace, there is still a long way to go to achieve truly egalitarian work conditions. From the ‘motherhood penalty’ to unconscious bias, women can still be made to feel unwelcome in their daily work life. This is what motivated Veroniek Vermeulen to launch Silatha, a company with the goal of creating an environment where everyone can thrive.
While a vast majority of women experience vaginal yeast infections, research has fallen short in providing an effective treatment approach. However, hope has emerged recently with the development of new model systems that allow exploration of the complex vaginal environment. Organ-on-chip models enable researchers to examine the interactions between human cells and microbes in a more accurate manner, offering the potential for the development of new therapies.
Innovative Smart Contact Lens Developer Awarded €2.5M in Funding for Groundbreaking Ocular Health Technology
The patient’s journey in a healthcare setting is influenced by factors beyond the mere medical aspects of the case. Local variations in care procedures among hospitals and caregivers enable benchmarking and adaptation of practices to optimize outcomes. For effective process modeling, it’s essential to collect data and extract insights. To optimize this process efficiently, collaborative efforts should explore alternative data sources and implement novel tools.
Barely any people stick to a three-meals-a-day plan. Snacking is part of our culture and can even contribute to a healthy diet when choosing the right snacks. But your appetite doesn’t always agree about what’s the “right” snack. Your hands automatically reach for those candy bars, instead of a handful of nuts. Therefore, we investigated whether two different nutritional labels – calorie labels and the Nutri-Score – can nudge you in the right direction.
Gluten-free dietary products contain more sugar and fats but fewer nutrients and are generally more expensive. A gluten-free diet can even lead to social isolation and stigmatization. Scientists are thus looking for a way that allows people with celiac gluten intolerance disease to enjoy the benefits of gluten in a safe manner.
In December 2023, Azalea Vision announced the first test of their smart contact lens on a real person. This demonstration showcased the first functional prototype of their smart lens, known as the ALMA lens, which was developed by the company to address ocular disorders characterized by the inability to effectively filter light.
In a significant milestone, Azalea Vision, pioneering start-up on a mission to revolutionize the treatment of ocular disorders, announces the successful demonstration of ALMA Lens, the first functional prototype of the Azalea smart contact lens’ platform.