Twelve new Medical Delta projects

Medical Delta, the collaboration between TU Delft, Leiden University, LUMC and Erasmus MC Rotterdam, started 12 new projects to develop solutions for sustainable healthcare.

The programmes combine the knowledge and expertise of three universities and two university medical centres to address important societal healthcare challenges such as dementia, helping the elderly stay mobile as long as possible, and the regeneration of tissues with stem cells. They will receive almost EUR 400,000 each. Delta spoke to six of the Delft scientists involved.

Professor Wouter Serdijn of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science is involved in two of the projects. The first is called NeuroDelta: Ambulant Neuromonitoring for Prevention and Treatment of Brain Disease. Brain disorders that involve multiple brain regions are notoriously difficult to treat and impose a huge burden on society. Examples are migraine and autism. The NeuroDelta Consortium will try to tackle these disorders.

Wouter Serdijn: “We will develop a first-of-a-kind arrhythmia-on-a-chip model.” (Photo: Sam Rentmeester)

“One of the main problems is that many patients suffering from these brain disorders are diagnosed relatively late. In the current project, we will develop and evaluate a system for mouse models suffering from these types of disorders, paving the way for clinical applications. More specifically, we will develop a device that will allow us to monitor and modulate activity simultaneously in multiple brain regions of freely-moving animals. This will lead to a better understanding of network phenomena in the brain and the development of better treatment modalities for two disorders that lead to deficits in individual and social behavior: migraine and autism.”

The second project Serdijn works on is the Medical Delta Cardiac Arrhythmia Lab.

Heart arrhythmia is a group of conditions in which the heartbeat is irregular, too fast, or too slow. The mission of the Medical Delta Cardiac Arrhythmia Lab is to decrease the cardiac arrhythmia burden by providing patient-tailored therapy. “To this end, we plan to design and test novel bio-electronic diagnostic tools. We will develop a first-of-a-kind arrhythmia-on-a-chip model to study arrhythmia mechanisms, identify novel therapeutic targets and test innovative therapies.”

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