... and will facilitate their quick translation into clinical practice, with the aim to directly improve patient care.

MIAMI will deliver improved and/or novel methodology for early diagnosis of disease in people at risk, who don’t exhibit clinically relevant conventional indicators (yet). We will establish a list of biomarkers indicating onset and course of inflammation, and we will devise potential strategies for therapeutic intervention, including identification of cellular and molecular targets for treatment of the disease.

With the help of SMEs that have a strong R&D commitment to biomarkers and personalized medicine solutions, assays will be developed that go beyond academic research formats. The aim is to develop proprietary point-of-care tests for easy and unrestricted use in the clinic or at the bedside, and to validate them. Multiplex assays or lateral-flow immunoassays can be developed for simultaneous detection of a variety of proteins and evaluated in a prospective setting. Novel targets such as microRNA will be addressed in innovative assay formats and validated prospectively as well. Finally, pilot data on the applicability of the identified biomarker targets to be used in cutting-edge molecular imaging approaches will be provided. The latter holds great potential of further innovations going beyond the scope of in vitro biomarker determination.

We follow a translational concept:

We will analyse the mechanisms of disease initiation and progression with a special focus on innate immune activation that connects the joint and the gut as well as the skin. This basic research, involving experimental models of the disease in the murine system, will be linked to clinical studies in which we will use markers of innate immune activation for patient identification and stratification. We seek to maximise the opportunity for success by combining this translation of our molecular insights into clinical practise with a biomarker discovery effort to identify novel markers that will enable monitoring of disease activity which a prerequisite for individualised therapeutic strategies. Biomarkers that indicate the extension of disease will be addressed. Finally, we intend to explore how we may further translate our findings into novel technologies including imaging tools, for which the translation process will be bidirectional. So validated markers will be investigated initially by molecular imaging in mice with the longer-term goal of achieving a biomarker imaging strategy in humans.