A group of Bioneer members are part of SENSING BARCELONA, the team respresenting Spain in the SensUs competition 2019.
SensUs 2019 is an event where student teams, from 14 different countries, have to develop innovative biosensing systems for the measurement of adalimumab, a biological drug that is prescribed to patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The competition involves both students and the industry, to accelerate the development of these sensors.
RA affects around 1% of the world population. Disease onset is most frequent during middle age and women are affected 2.5 times as frequently as men. Measurement of adalimumab concentrations will enable more efficient and effective management of the disease.
The use of Adalimumab, or biosimilar drugs, in patients with RA is essential. They block the activity of the cytokine TNF-alpha. This decreases the inflammation and the pain experienced by the patient. However, adalimumab affects the immune system and can reduce the body’s ability to fight infections, this is why developing thsese biosensors is so importnat. Biosensing could ensure effective treatment with as little side effects as possible. Moreover, many patients do not respond to treatment with adalimumab or lose response during treatment. Biosensing technologies could identify possible non-responders at an early stage and thereby prevent unnecessary treatment.
SENSING BARCELONA, the team representing Spain, is composed by 13 people: 8 from Bioneer (Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya) and 5 from the Universitat the Vic.
This project is enabling us to get deep into how the developement of a medical device works! We are expanding our knowledge about biochemistry, biology, data acquisition, microfluidics, etc. It’s being a huage learning experience.
Luckily, in this adventure, we have the support of our university (UPC), our professors, a number of healthcare professionals and RA patients who are giving us the tools to build the best prototype possible.