REVAMMAD is part of the European Union’s 7th Framework (FP7) Marie Curie Initial Training Network programme, which provides a supportive interdisciplinary framework for training of Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) who study PhDs supervised by at least two partners in different EU countries. Every ESR experiences a rich training environment including mentoring from clinicians and industry, summer schools, e-seminars, and multiple placements with other project partners. The consortium’s mix of computer science, biomedical and clinical expertise guarantees a unique environment for scientific study.
The retina provides a unique window into the circulatory system (vasculature) making it an appropriate organ for diagnostic purposes, even for vascular diseases primarily affecting other organs. Further research into measuring subtle changes in this area will enable the risk of conditions developing to be detected and tracked non-invasively through routine procedures such as standard eye tests at opticians. With partners in the UK, France, Germany, Denmark, Italy and Greece, REVAMMAD is training a cohort of young researchers able to effectively translate the latest vascular modelling theory and computerised image analysis techniques into effective disease interventions.
Professor Andrew Hunter, Pro Vice Chancellor and Head of College of Science at the University of Lincoln, is the project co-ordinator. He states:
“The vasculature plays a key role in chronic medical conditions that account for an increasing proportion of EU member state healthcare costs, including Alzheimer’s, diabetes, stroke and coronary heart disease. These issues have ignited considerable interest in computerised analysis of vascular images, to support scientific enquiry, diagnosis, prognosis and screening. However, until now research has been fragmented. There is therefore a clear need to establish a research community that integrates modelling, measurement and clinical investigation. This requires the training of a community of interdisciplinary experts with the scientific and mathematical expertise to determine how physiological changes can affect the vasculature, the computer vision skills to detect measurements that are correlated to such changes, and the medical expertise to relatethese to effective prognosis and diagnosis. The project partners have therefore worked together to devise the REVAMMAD project, which will provide a generation of experts with a unique blend of skills uniting theory, modelling, measurement and decision support, laying the ground work for improved retinal research in the next generation.”