New G7 tax regime is worrying news for Ireland

Good afternoon health colleagues, and welcome to the first European Alliance for Personalised Medicine (EAPM) update of the week. Work between EAPM and different journals is now ongoing concerning a special issue relating to the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and blood diseases in children in developed and developing countries, writes EAPM Executive Director Dr. Denis Horgan. 

Oncogenomics and pediatric health:  Call for Papers

The landscape for pediatric blood cancer therapy is just beginning to realize the potential predicted by precision oncogenomics. These developments have created a new environment, one in which parents with a child newly diagnosed find themselves navigating a very different landscape than the one a parent might have encountered in 2010. 

In this Special issue, we invite authors from developed and developing countries to contribute original research and review articles focusing on different aspects of pediatric cancer development, causes, maintenance, and therapeutic strategies. 

Topics include, on developments, challenges, and opportunities in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and blood diseases in children in developed and developing countries.  

This special issue has a global reach, so articles are being sought not only from the EU but also Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. 

The contents of this Topic should provide an insight into current pediatric cancer precision medicine efforts in developed and developing countries, reflecting only a microcosm of the current applications of oncogenomics in this bustling space of clinical translation. The Topic will publish research, commentaries, policy perspectives, historical insights, and clinical and laboratory observations. 

The findings from the Topic will be presented in an international conference in the second half of 2021 – the deadline for abstract submissions is 1 September 2021 and the deadline for manuscript submissions is 1 October 2021.  For more information, please see link

Trialogues on the European Health Union 

September could be the month for the European Health Union plans, with a Commission official highlighting that trilogues on the three EHU files could start after the summer recess if all goes according to plan. 

G7 health ministers agree to clinical trials charter

Health ministers from some of the world’s largest democracies have committed to a new international agreement making it easier and quicker to share results from vaccine and therapeutic trials to tackle COVID-19 and prevent future health threats. Following the conclusion of the UK-hosted, in-person G7 Health Ministers’ meeting in Oxford, a Therapeutics and Vaccines Clinical Trials Charter will be rapidly implemented. This will help deliver high-quality, reliable and comparable evidence from international clinical trials to speed up access to approved treatments and vaccines, benefiting people in the UK and globally. 

This will include stronger collaboration in large-scale international trials to enable greater diversity of participants, including pregnant people and children. The charter will also help to avoid unnecessary duplication of efforts, more quickly eliminate medicines that do not work, and produce robust clinical evidence that can be extrapolated to a larger number of populations and places to save more lives. The agreement follows news that industry leaders are joining forces to step up collective efforts to save lives from diseases and tackle global pandemics, with a new commitment to protect against future pandemic threats and slash time to develop and deploy new diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines to just 100 days.

Health technology assessment

The Commission, Council and Parliament met last week for the latest trilogue talks on the health technology assessment (HTA) file — HTA and increasingly aggressive pricing methods have put drug manufacturers under pressure, but an EU diplomat said they made made good progress: “The co-legislators confirmed the work done at technical level and exchanged views on the Council and EP positions on almost all political issues … and decided to continue the technical discussions in order to prepare for the next and hopefully last trilogue, already scheduled to 21 June.”

EU Beating Cancer Plan

The stakeholder contact group of Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan — a mix of some 200 representatives from the world of patient groups, NGOs, and industry — met virtually for the first time on Friday (4 June) to discuss the Commission’s cancer strategy. The EU’s Cancer Mission — not to be confused with Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan — was also discussed during the contact group meeting. It is one of the five missions of the EU’s research agenda, known as Horizon Europe. According to one participant of the stakeholder meeting, however, all may not be well: When asked about the likelihood of the mission not going ahead, Jan-Willem van der Loo, the team leader for Cancer at the Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, said that the “review process on the missions is being tough” and declined to “give a percentage answer on that, seemingly acknowledging there was some kind of issue,” according to a participant.

Some 50% of Europeans dissatisfied with EU pandemic management

Nearly half of European respondents are unsatisfied with the EU’s measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a new survey has revealed. It found 49% were unhappy with measures taken by the bloc, while 43% were satisfied and 8% undecided. The highest proportion of dissatisfaction was found in Greece, Luxembourg and Belgium, the Eurobarometer poll found. The findings, which stems from a survey conducted between 12 February and 11 March across the 27 EU countries and 12 other countries outside the EU, including the UK, showed dissatisfaction with the EU over coronavirus was up by five percentage points since last summer. It also compares to 43% of people who said they were satisfied with the EU’s COVID-19 measures – down two percentage points since the summer – and 8% who said they “don’t know” how they feel about the EU’s coronavirus response, down three percentage points. 

The highest proportions of satisfaction were found in Denmark (68%), Lithuania (67%) and Portugal (66%). Meanwhile, 12 member states had a majority of respondents express dissatisfaction, with Greece leading the way at 68%, followed by Luxembourg (63%) and Belgium (61%). In Spain and the Netherlands, public opinion was evenly divided, with 44% satisfied and 44% not satisfied in the former country and latter seeing the same, but at 43%.

And that is all from EAPM for now – don’t forget, there is more information to be found here on the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and blood diseases in children Special Issue, stay safe, have an excellent week, see you soon.

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