The EUPHORIA consortium met for a kick-off meeting at iThera Medical GmbH in Munich, Germany on February 1, 2019. iThera develops and markets biomedical imaging systems based on a novel biophotonics technology, Multispectral Optoacoustic Tomography (MSOT).

The project meeting included representatives from all five partners distributed across four European countries. After a welcome by EUPHORIA Coordinator Philipp Bell of iThera Medical and introductions around the table, Kylie O’Brien of Pintail Limited presented the project management objectives and tasks with attached deadlines. Frédéric Brochin from IMASONIC, a leader in ultrasonic technologies and solutions, facilitated discussion on optimizing the transducer. This process will incorporate the identification of technological and use requirements from clinicians.

Meeting delegates were taken on a facility tour led by Elena Mercep, a Senior Product Engineer at iThera Medical.

Vassilis Sarantos of RAYFOS presented plans for software adaptation. RAYFOS is a UK-based leader in optical engineering and real-time processing systems. Maximilian Waldner of University Hospital Erlangen provided interesting background information about inflammatory bowel diseases including disease complications, non-responders to drugs, the lack of biomarkers, clinical scores and the current standards of treatments. Above all, Max highlighted the clinical relevance of the EUPHORIA project. The University Hospital Erlangen has extensive experience with imaging technologies for medical diagnosis, as well as in the preclinical and clinical research of inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. Their role within EUPHORIA  is to further validate the new MSOT technology in the clinic.  Certification and reimbursement plans were presented by Nina Dahlhaus of iThera Medical, and Danielle Nicholson of Pintail Limited facilitated a discussion which centred on project communication and dissemination. Nina Dahlhaus also presented the plans and procedures for commercialisation and exploitation. Break-out sessions followed on from the work package presentations.

Thanks to our hosts at iThera Medical for hosting such a productive kick-off meeting!